Ryan Leas

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Grammy Ratings Hit All-Time Low In Demo

Last night's iteration of the Grammys was exceptionally grim -- one might even call it a "sad, fraught, fucked-up night of television" -- and apparently…
Ryan Leas | January 27, 2020 - 7:52 pm

Rolling Loud Miami 2020 Lineup

Having launched back in 2014, Rolling Loud has already expanded well beyond its Miami origins. The giant hip-hop festival has now spread into multiple events…
Ryan Leas | January 27, 2020 - 7:12 pm

Deeper – “This Heat”

Back in the summer of 2018, the Chicago post-punk band Deeper emerged with a self-titled debut. It was a promising introduction, the kind that leaves…
Ryan Leas | January 27, 2020 - 10:47 am

Nipsey Hussle Posthumously Wins His First Grammy

Nipsey Hussle has posthumously been awarded his first Grammy. After receiving his first nomination last year for Best Rap Album with Victory Lap, Nipsey was…
Ryan Leas | January 26, 2020 - 6:37 pm

Genesis Reunite At MSG (To Watch The Knicks)

Back in 1996, Phil Collins left Genesis to focus on his solo career. He later rejoined the band for a massive 2007 tour. But for…
Ryan Leas | January 23, 2020 - 6:13 pm

Sorry – “More”

We've been excited about the malleable UK indie group Sorry for quite some time now. Back in the middle of 2018, we named them a…
Ryan Leas | January 23, 2020 - 1:56 pm

Too Free – “No Fun”

A couple weeks ago, we got our first taste of Too Free, a new electronic trio featuring Merchandise's Carson Cox alongside singer Awad Bilal and…
Ryan Leas | January 23, 2020 - 11:09 am

Wye Oak – “Fear Of Heights”

Over the last year, Wye Oak have given us a couple standalone tracks, as Jenn Wasner and Andy Stack pursued other projects following the tour…
Ryan Leas | January 21, 2020 - 10:27 am

Watch Post Malone In The Trailer For New Marky Mark Movie Spenser Confidential

Post Malone is always pretty busy. Over the last couple years, he's never wandered too far from the spotlight. But after last year's Hollywood's Bleeding,…
Ryan Leas | January 20, 2020 - 2:41 pm

Pearl Jam Reveal Gigaton Tracklist

It has been a long, long wait for Pearl Jam's new album Gigaton. The band's last collection, Lightning Bolt, came out way back in October…
Ryan Leas | January 20, 2020 - 9:45 am

The Anniversary

Transference Turns 10

There is a well-worn yarn about Spoon's career. For years, the prevailing narrative was that you could barely create a narrative around them at all…
Ryan Leas | January 17, 2020 - 10:50 am

The 1975 – “Me & You Together Song”

The rollout for the 1975's forthcoming album Notes On A Conditional Form has been long. I mean, it's been really, really long if you consider…
Ryan Leas | January 16, 2020 - 2:36 pm

Squirrel Flower – “Streetlight Blues”

At the end of this month, Ella O’Connor Williams will release I Was Born Swimming, her debut album under the moniker Squirrel Flower. We've already…
Ryan Leas | January 16, 2020 - 11:14 am

Beastie Boys Story Directed By Spike Jonze Coming To IMAX, Apple TV+

There's a new Beastie Boys documentary coming from Spike Jonze. Today, it was announced that Beastie Boys Story, which Adam Horovitz and Mike Diamond wrote…
Ryan Leas | January 15, 2020 - 1:08 pm

Spotify Unveils Playlists For Pets

Soon there will be a Spotify playlist for every single aspect of your life. Today, the streaming giant unveiled their latest algorithmic concoction: playlists for…
Ryan Leas | January 15, 2020 - 10:14 am

Comments from Ryan Leas

I don't know that the site has anything against that album, I can't remember why we didn't do an anniversary. Speaking for myself, and maintaining the whole "they don't make bad albums" bit... it was my initial gateway Spoon album but became my least favorite over time. I don't think it's as interesting as the ones from the '10s, or as memorable as the albums immediately before and after it. It feels a little more stuck in its time to me. But like I said in the piece... that's the thing with these guys. That's just my ranking, and I totally get why some people have it towards the top.
+4 |
January 17, 2020 on Transference Turns 10
Drawing Radiohead parallels is not where I expected this to go but now I'm thinking of They Want My Soul as the glossier, prettier night album with all these new sonic touches and ... A Moon Shaped Pool kinda did the same thing after TKOL, too. What is Radiohead's Hot Thoughts gonna be like...
+13 |
January 17, 2020 on Transference Turns 10
It's no "Manhattan" by Kings Of Leon. JK...the Cat Power one is good. Writing this kinda made me want to write a whole list of NYC songs. Barely scratched the surface just listing some really big ones in the article.
0 |
September 9, 2019 on “Empire State Of Mind” Turns 10
Guys, they still call me Young Classic Rocker Ryan Leas on staff - I know about Belew. But I still think it’s kinda weird for people to compare a 2019 band to both of them when you consider the historical signifier of “King Crimson as an influence” is a little different than “Talking Heads as an influence”
0 |
July 19, 2019 on The 5 Best Songs Of The Week
Yes, that too. (Transference was one of my favorites for years but over time TWMS has edged right up towards the top for me.)
+13 |
June 25, 2019 on We’ve Got A File On You: Britt Daniel
I think this is a very apples and oranges thing in the sense that "experimentation" is relative according to whichever realm an artist operates in. Holly Herndon is making strange, beautiful electronic music partially using fucking AI to do so...naturally, it is more experimental by most metrics of mainstream taste, and it's also great. So it's not really a value judgement, in my opinion. When I say the National are "experimenting," it's within the context of them being an indie band that headlines festivals and has songs featured on movie soundtracks or in commercials. It's within the context of their own writing, and trying to take a pretty granular look at how it changes a bit from album to album. So within that context, Bryce's classical work creeping over into the National more and more here, having these choral breaks or sidelining their frontman, does strike me as an experiment. They're not over here searching for New Music, but they are testing the limits of their work and their past. Anyway I guess the TL;DR is I think both these artists are excelling at what they do, and pushing themselves within what they do, and it is OK to like both!
+28 |
May 13, 2019 on Premature Evaluation: The National I Am Easy To Find
"Cattails" is one of the best songs I've heard this year. I wasn't joking in the blurb. I've had it in my head literally every single day since I got the album.
+12 |
April 5, 2019 on The 5 Best Songs Of The Week
Yeah "Cruel Fisherman" isn't technically part of the album so we didn't get into that one.
+4 |
March 22, 2019 on The Story Behind Every Song On Strand Of Oaks’ New Album Eraserland
Man, I think the title track is one of his best songs ever. I was floored when that came on during my first listen.
+4 |
March 22, 2019 on The Story Behind Every Song On Strand Of Oaks’ New Album Eraserland
My contrarian opinion is Gimme Fiction is the less interesting passage between Kill The Moonlight and Ga, and I'd happily listen to Transference or They Want My Soul over it any day
+2 |
February 15, 2019 on Dark Was The Night Turns 10
I love Transference, I don't get why people still dismiss it either. But no getting around that Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga is perceived as their big contribution to that era.
+14 |
February 15, 2019 on Dark Was The Night Turns 10
I loved this Bon Iver/St. Vincent track "Roslyn" back then https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-LKbYhEwUoE Imagine what a collab between the two of them would sound like *now*
+19 |
February 15, 2019 on Dark Was The Night Turns 10
Ha, this actually came up between me and Michael when we were editing this. I guess you could call it a dig...to me they are just very, very of that era. But at the same time, I'd far prefer to revisit their albums than albums from some of the other more prominent/respected names that were also on this comp.
+16 |
February 15, 2019 on Dark Was The Night Turns 10
From what I remember I liked the old Spies better, but maybe I'll have to go back and give the newer stuff a listen again. Also, this is sorta splitting hairs for any of us who don't actually live in Dublin, but they've been kicking around for a little while longer than some of these other names.
+2 |
January 16, 2019 on Band To Watch: Fontaines D.C.
I definitely hear U2 in "Desire" as well. I think you can see it a couple different ways, depending on the light, so to speak. Also wish the Ought album got more love. I was really into it, and they were one of the best live shows I saw this year.
+2 |
December 21, 2018 on The 5 Best Rolling Stones Songs Of 2018
I spent a chunk of my time writing this wishing that "Rent I Pay" had come out this year, too. The Stones vibes are deep with Spoon. As for coolness...the Stones and anyone successfully taking influence from them will always be cooler. Universal truth. That being said, I tried to find a Father John Misty song that made sense for this list, and failed. Definitely more Beatles in his veins. And he's a pretty cool character.
+7 |
December 21, 2018 on The 5 Best Rolling Stones Songs Of 2018
To be honest, I've since gone back and I can hear both. But that being said "Laurel" is still the one I hear much more easily so I'm still a little taken aback by people who hear "Yanny" from the start, without trying.
0 |
December 13, 2018 on Phoebe Bridgers Reviews 2018
Nation Of Language! You are a wise Stereogum reader. They would've had a song on mine if they hadn't been #1 on my list last year.
+3 |
December 11, 2018 on Stereogum’s 90 Favorite Songs Of 2018
As it happens, those are the exact three songs I'd cut. Nice as B-sides, and then the album does all the same messy exploration and introspection but is a better listen overall, IMO. And yeah, feel like "Sad Professor" is one of the best songs from the post-Berry years.
+2 |
October 29, 2018 on Up Turns 20