Home > News & Reviews > Bill Ryder Jones

Bill Ryder-Jones - Yawn (Album Review)

Tuesday, 13 November 2018 Written by Jacob Brookman

Photo: Ki Price

Bill Ryder-Jones’ fifth solo album is a dream-pop melange of shoegaze and alternative indie fed through a highly literate, if rather boring, cypher.

It’s not that the music isn’t well put together. Ryder-Jones has been recording since his former band, the Coral, broke through in 2002 and is a seasoned arranger and writer who explores many different tonalities on ‘Yawn’.

Furthermore, his distinctive fingerpicking guitar style is rich, skilful and occasionally hypnotic. The challenge comes from the lack of tangible innovation within the music.

Additionally, his mumbled vocals - which place him stylistically in the neighbourhood of Conor Oberst and the Clientele’s Alasdair MacLean - help to dismiss lyrics that might otherwise be quite interesting.

One of the challenges with this kind of music is that it is actually very similar to the soft rock of Coldplay or Elbow, but without the big singalong moments. Those bands often generate contempt from the same musos who value the independence of artists like Ryder-Jones, but it’s a deeply tribal hostility that can also be seen in the outright hatred of centrists by the hard left. Surely the real battle is with the hard right?

None of which is Ryder-Jones’ fault, of course, but it might explain why he makes certain compositional choices. There Are Worse Things I Could Do is a heavy dirge that resembles the Cranberries’ Zombie. It’s long, varied and should be transcendental, but the actual impact is enervation. The music seems to drain the energy from the room, filling it with a kind of emotional exhaustion.

At the end of the day, Ryder-Jones has called the album ‘Yawn’, so he’s clearly pre-empting any poison pen. The music has a kind of satisfaction in its mopey trudging, but that self-awareness is not enough to save it. Like Arctics Monkeys’ recent ‘Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino’ album, one could see this record as a bit of a genre exercise if it weren’t for the fact that - as mentioned before - ‘Yawn’ sounds like something very mainstream: a kind of knock-off Elbow.

Bill Ryder-Jones Upcoming Tour Dates are as follows:

Thu December 13 2018 - LIVERPOOL Grand Central Hall
Tue February 12 2019 - SHIPLEY Salt Beer Factory
Wed February 13 2019 - EDINBURGH Summerhall
Thu February 14 2019 - GATESHEAD Sage Gateshead
Fri February 15 2019 - NOTTINGHAM Bodega Social
Sat February 16 2019 - BIRMINGHAM Castle and Falcon
Sun February 17 2019 - BRISTOL Thekla
Mon February 18 2019 - BRIGHTON Haunt
Tue February 19 2019 - LONDON EartH
Thu February 21 2019 - BELFAST Black Box
Fri February 22 2019 - DUBLIN Whelans

Click here to compare & buy Bill Ryder Jones Tickets at Stereoboard.com.





Let Us Know What You Think - Leave A Comment!




Related News

Bill Ryder-Jones Lines Up Summer Release For Piano Version Of 2018 Album 'Yawn'
Mon 03 Jun 2019
Photo: Jack Finnigan  Bill Ryder-Jones has announced a piano version of his 'Yawn' album.
Bill Ryder-Jones Reveals Video For New 'Yawn' Track Don't Be Scared, I Love You
Tue 30 Oct 2018
Photo: Ki Price Bill Ryder-Jones has posted another track from his new album.
Bill Ryder-Jones Plots February UK Tour Following Release Of 'Yawn'
Wed 03 Oct 2018
Photo: Ki Price  Bill Ryder-Jones has announced a UK tour for February.
House Parties To Headliners: Foals' Guitar Riffs Through The Ages
Mon 10 Jun 2019
In the 10 years since Foals released their debut album, ‘Antidotes’, Yannis Philippakis, Jack Bevan, Jimmy Smith and Edwin Congreave have naturally evolved.
Cate Le Bon - Reward (Album Review)
Tue 04 Jun 2019
Photo: Ivana Kličković Cate Le Bon has never been easy to pin down. Having toured and collaborated with a diverse selection of musicians ranging from St. Vincent to Deerhunter, the Welsh musician and producer could loosely be described as trading in sprawling alt-folk, but that would only tell half the story. On her newest record, ‘Reward’, Le Bon creates a unique world indebted to new wave and jazz as much as it is to contemporary pop and folk acts—all with her own idiosyncratic twist.
Black Mountain - Destroyer (Album Review)
Fri 07 Jun 2019
Photo: Olivia Jaffe Black Mountain’s fifth studio album, ‘Destroyer’, comes in the wake of line-up changes that threw the band’s future into doubt. Following the amicable departure of founding drummer Josh Wells and vocalist Amber Webber, Stephen McBean and Jeremy Schmidt began working on new music that might have eventually fallen under a new name. But that wasn’t to be.
Foals Unveil Video For Sunday Ahead Of UK Tour
Tue 04 Jun 2019
Foals have shared a video for Sunday.
Bastille Continue To Tease 'Doom Days' With Video For New Track Those Nights
Wed 05 Jun 2019
Bastille have shared a video for Those Nights.
 
< Prev   Next >