December 14, 2010 - Pax Am
Sometimes the best parts of a movie are left on the cutting room floor. Generally, if the film merits it, the discarded scenes are swept up and added in as bonus features on the DVD. Consider III/IV to be the deleted scenes from Ryan Adams’ six-month long songwriting spree, which gave way to Easy Tiger in 2007. The double album is a diverse representation of all the songwriting styles Adams has called his own throughout his prolific career (save for “fully realized sci-fi metal,” the concept behind 2010’s Orion). Not without a stripped-down rock ballad, “Dear Candy” paints a lyrical picture of fantasy and desire with the Cardinals chiming in with critical harmonies. “Stop Playing With My Heart” hits hard with a handclap-inducing beat and a catchy hook that recalls Adams’ Rock And Roll-era glory. With 21 tracks, there are points when this collection falls short and becomes forgettable. That said, III/IV is the director’s cut of a moment in Ryan Adams’ all-too-prolific career. It adds dimension in some areas, but may be too much information for causal fans of the singer/songwriter.