Ryan Adams just wants to be your sober little bear

It seems useless to pine for the days when Ryan Adams was just a Gram Parsons worshipping, "Too Drunk to Dream," alt-country fool in a lil band called Whiskeytown because, nine albums (some Heartbreakingly beautiful, some not so Easy to take in, tiger) and a shitload of drugs later, he still sort of is that guy. But older, wiser, soberer - with an addiction to Diet Coke, not the other kind of coke - and definitely weirder. We thought the obnoxious number of rap songs on his website a year or so ago were odd but amusing, for about 2 minutes or so, and when we saw him play in NYC around the same time, clad in knee-high black pleather boots and jamming with Norah Jones, his between-song dialogue was rambling and incoherent, but no one really seemed to mind. And maybe that’s because part of being a successful artist - and part of the reason his many die-hard fans adore him - is having an extreme, eccentric personality. He’s like this century’s Jackson Pollock or Andy Warhol, minus their tragic fates, thanks to his newly abstinent persona (we’re avoiding all comparisons to Elliott Smith that are coming to mind right now). The latest in Ryan Adams’ weird, wacky world is a series of videos he’s posted on his YouTube page (where he writes: “I make movies because i am lonely a lot, a busy body, and i love to learn”) which include bad poetry streaming downwards, Star Wars-style, followed by an acoustic “Saturday Night Bedroom Show” performance of “Everybody Knows,” (preempted by the message “a sober little bear, just tryin to share.” Awwwww). But he’s not all lovable alcohol-free cuteness! No! Adams can be DARK. And GLOOMY! IN ALL CAPS! There’s proof in SATANIC, Adams’ new, fake, hilariously awful death metal band. SATANIC’s video, forbodingly titled “Witches Arise,” stars Adams in what looks like a Morticia Adams wig, dancing fireside in a living room like a giddy, middle school-aged metalhead, and dragging a coffin around (we were half expecting Adams’ mom to wander in any minute, turn off the music, and tell the boys to come to the dinner table). It pairs well with “SATANIC, ‘Black Horses of Death’”, the apocalyptic (how can death metal not be?), lighting and fire-filled video starring Adams dressed as a wolf. Check out the recently-posted videos here:

"Black Horses of Death"

"Witches Arise"
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