Released January 15, 2018.
Ryan Gibson is an eloquent, somber exposition. The intricate guitar work beautifully laces melancholy melodies and cynical lyrics, with a rhythm section that subtly drives and underlines. Songs paint dark vignettes of bitterness and city streets, affected by a reverence for mystery and solitude. The lyrics sometimes contrast the pretty melodies that contain them with their unabashed spite, boldly calling out the state of a world that is cruel and often shallow. But even here there are glimmers of hope and innocence. It is the work of an artist with the depth and resiliency to “transcend hell,” and still have the playfulness to sail the sewer in a paper boat.
The beauty of this album is in its subtlety. Harmonies that bring great depth are sometimes barely audible, where simplicity of sound is an illusory device. Each songs is meticulously crafted; each part is envisioned, played, and layered with the precision made possible by being the work’s sole creative source. This is an album one could listen many times and still continue to uncover nuances.