Ryan Bingham tells the economically busted, morally bankrupt world to go fuck itself… When I sat down to review Ryan Bingham’s newest album, Tomorrowland, I took the usual precautions: I threw back a shot of Jose Cuervo and mentally prepared to walk down a desolate lyrical landscape of seared animal skulls, dust bowls and vultures tearing apart the splayed guts of putrescence. I’ve listened to Ryan Bingham over the years for the same reason I read Cormac McCarthy or watch Wim Wenders movies: for the catharsis, to sit still in a symphonic sweat lodge where your darkest demons are absorbed into every pore and oozed back out in an ammonic afterglow. That’s what I knew of Ryan Bingham.
Ryan Bingham is stepping up and stepping out on his fourth album, ditching his former label Lost Highway and his former band The Dead Horses for a truly independent production. But the results crackle with energy as Bingham delivers a platter that may be his best yet. Bingham’s gritty vocals are as cathartic as ever and these songs are sparkling with rocking riffs and big chords.
Ryan Bingham's stellar 2010 album Junky Star felt like a record he'd been striving to make since he began recording. By contrast, Tomorrowland feels like one he had to make. Bingham ditched his label and the Dead Horses, his longtime backing band. This set appears on his own Axster Bingham label; it was co-produced by the artist and Justin Stanley.
For his new album, Tomorrowland, Ryan Bingham ditched his label and his band. He’s also ditched the hard-worn sensitivity of “The Weary Kind,” his breakthrough Oscar-winning song penned for Crazy Heart. This time around, Bingham, like some kind of commercial for the authenticity-craving Americana fanbase, embraces a louder, more aggressive sound that leans more towards rock than country.