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Jacksonville City Nights [Australian Bonus Track]
     

Jacksonville City Nights [Australian Bonus Track]

by Ryan Adams & the Cardinals
 

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Ever since the big, splashy Gold failed to make Ryan Adams an all-conquering superstar -- it bolstered his reputation as a rock critic darling, but never had the sales to match the press -- he's retreated to genre exercises, beginning with the sleek modern rock of 2003's Rock N Roll and its moody alt rock counterpart, Love Is

Overview

Ever since the big, splashy Gold failed to make Ryan Adams an all-conquering superstar -- it bolstered his reputation as a rock critic darling, but never had the sales to match the press -- he's retreated to genre exercises, beginning with the sleek modern rock of 2003's Rock N Roll and its moody alt rock counterpart, Love Is Hell, carrying through to his Neil Young/Grateful Dead pastiche on his spring 2005 double-album Cold Roses, and now its autumn sequel, Jacksonville City Nights. Arriving a little over four months after Cold Roses as the second installment of a planned trilogy of 2005 releases, Jacksonville City Nights -- which at one point was going to be called the less-evocative but calendar-specific September -- is Adams' straight-up, straight-ahead country album, a lean 46-minute collection of 14 songs designed for late-night drinking. While the terrific cover art deliberately echoes classic '60s country LPs, the sound of the album isn't quite as honky tonk as that suggests, thanks to a handful of brooding numbers like "September" that are too introspective, lyric-centered, and light on melody to truly qualify as classicist country. These are the weakest moments here, but they're also the exception to the rule, since most of the songs represent a number of classic country archetypes, from the opening pair of barroom anthems, "A Kiss Before I Go" and "The End," to his "Dear John" duet with Norah Jones or the light hillbilly swagger of the galloping "Trains" and how "My Heart Is Broken" is sweetened by just enough swings to give it a candy coating but not enough to turn it into countrypolitan schmaltz. As good as these cuts sound, it's still hard not to shake the suspicion that Ryan Adams is primarily a pastiche artist, since it's not only easy to spot influences throughout the album, but because the atmosphere of the record makes more of an impression than the individual songs. That said, Jacksonville City Nights still ranks as one of Adams' stronger albums, not just because he's returning to his rootsy roots -- after all, this isn't alt country, this is pure country -- but because it maintains a consistent mood, is tightly edited and well sequenced, and thanks to the Cardinals, has the easy assurance of Cold Roses, which is preferable to the somewhat desperate feel of the records immediately following Heartbreaker. It may not all add up to a major statement, which is something Gold and Rock N Roll aspired to be, but it surely makes for a more likeable and ultimately more listenable album. [This edition contains one bonus track.]

Product Details

Release Date:
02/07/2011
Label:
Universal I.S.
UPC:
0602498849064
catalogNumber:
9884906
Rank:
69137

Tracks

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Ryan Adams & the Cardinals   Primary Artist
David Angell   Violin
Connie Ellisor   Violin
Carl Gorodetzky   Violin
Bob Hoffnar   Pedal Steel Guitar
Johnny T   Drums
Julia Kent   Cello
Joe McGinty   Piano
Nashville String Machine   Track Performer
Pamela Sixfin   Violin
Alan Umstead   Violin
Catherine Umstead   Violin
Gary VanOsdale   Viola
Mary Kathryn Van Osdale   Violin
Bergen White   Conductor
Kris Wilkinson   Viola
Jon Graboff   Pedal Steel Guitar,Group Member
Glenn Patscha   Piano,Background Vocals
Ryan Adams   Acoustic Guitar,Piano,Vocals,Group Member
Carole Rabinowitz-Neuen   Cello
Claudia Chopek   Violin
Norah Jones   Piano,Vocals
Byron Isaacs   Background Vocals
J.P. Bowersock   Electric Guitar,Group Member
David Gold   Violin,Viola
Catherine Popper   Keyboards,Background Vocals,Group Member
Michael Panes   Violin

Technical Credits

Mark James   Composer
Johnny Christopher   Composer
Bergen White   Arranger
Tom Schick   Producer,Engineer
Jon Graboff   Composer
Wayne Carson Thompson   Composer
Ryan Adams   Composer,Art Direction
Caitlin Cary   Composer
Norah Jones   Composer
J.P. Bowersock   Composer
Josh Grier   Legal Advisor
Catherine Popper   Composer
Michael Panes   Composer
Andy West   Art Direction
Brad Pemberton   Composer
Tom Gloady   Producer,Engineer
Frank Riley   Booking

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