Ryan Leas

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Watch Jim James Cover The Beatles For COVID-19 Relief Fund

Jim James is no stranger to covering George Harrison songs. One of his first true solo endeavors, back when he was still going by Yim…
Ryan Leas | March 27, 2020 - 5:36 pm

The 5 Best Songs Of The Week

The 5 Best Songs Of The Week

Every week the Stereogum staff chooses the five best new songs of the week (the eligibility period begins and ends Thursdays right before midnight). This
Ryan Leas | March 27, 2020 - 5:27 pm

Hamilton Leithauser – “Don’t Check The Score”

In the beginning of February, Hamilton Leithauser began rolling out his latest solo album, The Loves Of Your Life. So far, we've heard "Here They
Ryan Leas | March 27, 2020 - 12:02 am

Deeper – “The Knife”

Back in January, the Chicago post-punk band Deeper announced their sophomore outing, Auto-Pain. Along the way, we've heard a couple songs from the album, including…
Ryan Leas | March 25, 2020 - 10:32 am

The National, Soccer Mommy Launching Campaigns To Support Tour Crew During Pandemic

As the coronavirus pandemic continues, many industries aren't able to function normally -- if at all. At this point, the music landscape of 2020 already…
Ryan Leas | March 24, 2020 - 1:04 pm

Squid – “Sludge”

Out of the new generation of guitar bands coming from the UK and Ireland, Squid quickly proved themselves to be one of the most exciting.
Ryan Leas | March 24, 2020 - 11:03 am

Dirty Projectors – “Search For Life”

It's been a fruitful couple of years for Dirty Projectors' fans. Ever since Dave Longstreth kick-started a new era of the project with 2017's self-titled…
Ryan Leas | March 24, 2020 - 11:00 am

Album Of The Week

Album Of The Week: Sorry 925

Sorry took a different path. In their early days, they didn't make themselves known by releasing a couple standalone singles, nor did they put out…
Ryan Leas | March 24, 2020 - 10:50 am

Muzz – “Broken Tambourine”

Earlier this month, we were introduced to a new indie supergroup called Muzz when a song called "Bad Feeling" quietly appeared online. Muzz is a…
Ryan Leas | March 24, 2020 - 10:11 am

Melkbelly – “Sickeningly Teeth”

Back in January, the Chicago-based Band To Watch alumni Melkbelly announced their new album PITH. So far we've heard two singles, "LCR" and "Humid Heart."
Ryan Leas | March 24, 2020 - 10:04 am

Watch Ben Gibbard Play Death Cab’s Earliest Material In Rarities Livestream

Is Ben Gibbard going to single-handedly get us all through quarantine? I mean, a lot of other people are doing livestream performances, but Gibbard is…
Ryan Leas | March 23, 2020 - 10:01 pm

Tres Warren Of Psychic Ills Dead At 41

Tres Warren, frontman of the New York psych-rock duo Psychic Ills, has passed away. The band shared a statement today on their Facebook page. No…
Ryan Leas | March 23, 2020 - 7:15 pm

Watch James Blake Cover Radiohead’s “No Surprises” In His Quarantine Livestream

You know the story by now: The music industry, like much of everything else, is grinding to a halt amidst the coronavirus pandemic and people…
Ryan Leas | March 23, 2020 - 6:32 pm

Stream Father John Misty’s New Live Album Benefitting MusiCares’ COVID-19 Relief Fund

A little under two years ago, Josh Tillman released his fourth album as Father John Misty, the excellent God's Favorite Customer. He toured behind it…
Ryan Leas | March 23, 2020 - 10:36 am

Control Top – “One Good Day”

Last year, the Philadelphia trio Control Top released their ferocious, addicting debut album Covert Contracts, one of the best albums of 2019. Since then, they've…
Ryan Leas | March 18, 2020 - 12:03 pm

Comments from Ryan Leas

That song is really something. My other favorite is "Drop Me Down."
+5 |
March 13, 2020 on The 5 Best Songs Of The Week
"Alright" kinda gives me Binaural vibes but that might partially be because he sings the words "thin air" in the chorus.
+2 |
March 9, 2020 on Premature Evaluation: Pearl Jam Gigaton
There's also this.... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1WUh3DPouDs&feature=youtu.be
+19 |
March 9, 2020 on The Monitor Turns 10
I've gone back and forth on LB and Backspacer a decent amount but I don't really get why people would like other 21st century PJ and hate LB either. In particular, hearing the title track live really made it fit into their overall body of work for me — if I didn't know the album at that point I could've imagined it being an older song. And I still think Infallible and Pendulum are cool.
+1 |
March 9, 2020 on Premature Evaluation: Pearl Jam Gigaton
Hmm yeah I don't know if it's that kind of album. Maybe "Who Ever Said" and "Quick Escape," though the chorus in the latter is more anxious than triumphant. My favorite songs are the mellower ones, so there's strong material I'd want to see them play live but I suspect they'll lean on the rockers more. Very curious how they're going to translate "Dance" live.
+5 |
March 9, 2020 on Premature Evaluation: Pearl Jam Gigaton
Yeah, he plays drums on "Indignities" as well.
+2 |
February 13, 2020 on Nation Of Language – “Rush & Fever”
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...
+14 |
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