13 Songs, 53 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Josh Ritter creates music that falls through the cracks. It defies easy categorization; it dances to its own beat; it sounds like folk music that is haunted by its own particular ghosts. The Idaho-born songwriter explores many deep concepts on his fifth studio album, writing a novel tentatively titled Bright’s Passage while completing this album. “The Curse” was the song that formed the record, focusing on a Victorian archaeologist that led Ritter to seek more information about science and, specifically Newton and his concept of gravity and beyond. One need not be versed in the sciences to enjoy the murder- ballad destiny of “Folk Bloodbath” or the casual bounce of “Lark.” These are tunes still built on the belief that a well-spoken vocal and a gentle ensemble performance can cut through to the heart. “Another New World” spreads out over seven minutes with a great swell of dynamics supporting this tale to nowhere that evokes Donovan in his search for Atlantis.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Josh Ritter creates music that falls through the cracks. It defies easy categorization; it dances to its own beat; it sounds like folk music that is haunted by its own particular ghosts. The Idaho-born songwriter explores many deep concepts on his fifth studio album, writing a novel tentatively titled Bright’s Passage while completing this album. “The Curse” was the song that formed the record, focusing on a Victorian archaeologist that led Ritter to seek more information about science and, specifically Newton and his concept of gravity and beyond. One need not be versed in the sciences to enjoy the murder- ballad destiny of “Folk Bloodbath” or the casual bounce of “Lark.” These are tunes still built on the belief that a well-spoken vocal and a gentle ensemble performance can cut through to the heart. “Another New World” spreads out over seven minutes with a great swell of dynamics supporting this tale to nowhere that evokes Donovan in his search for Atlantis.

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Ratings and Reviews

4.7 out of 5
255 Ratings

255 Ratings

muzikel ,

top 5 albums of 2010

I'd rate this as one of the best records of 2010 -with such brilliant and diverse sonic and lyrical landscapes, it's a real genius work. Here's my list of top 5 records of 2010:

1. Josh Ritter - So Runs the World Away
2. Richard McGraw - Burying the Dead
3. Joanna Newsome- Have One on Me
4. Bonnie Prince - The Wonder Show of the World
5. Edward Sharpe - Up from Below (even though it was releaste in 2009)

SRTWA711 ,

Album of the Year

Top to bottom, the best album I've heard released this year. There's really not a bad (or even less-than-awesome) song on it.

So Runs the World Away reminds me most of Animal Years rather than the more recent Historical Conquests, though this new album certainly breaks ground into new territory. The lyricism is brilliant/witty/haunting/poignant/exceptional as always and holds up well against Josh's best writing (Thin Blue Flame, Girl in the War, Kathleen, so many more...)

The album is certainly more mellow than Historical Conquests, though there are a couple of excellent rockers (Orbital, Lantern). If I have to pick, the highlights among highlights are The Curse, Rattling Locks, Another New World, Change of Time. I feel very confident this album is going to get better with repeat listens.

Honestly, though, in an age of downloading one "hit single" or a couple of songs by an artist, So Runs the World Away is a true album that should be listened to as a whole. So get the album, get your beverage of choice, sit down in front of your stereo/computer/Ipod and prepare for 50 some minutes of bliss.

Jake 47 ,

Listen

While his previous album "The Historical Conquests..." was a different sounding album, Josh Ritter's strengths throughout his career has been in his lyrics. (The real power of the songs on "Historical Conquest..." really shine on the live CD "Live at the 9:30 Club" -- WOW!) I did like the rowdiness of "Historical Conquests..." and with the summer months approaching it would have been cool if the songs on this record were more car radio friendly. But that's OK, "So Runs the World Away" is a listening album with songs such as "The Curse" being hypnotically unforgettable. The production of the album is stunning and frames the lyrics beautifully. It has been a long time since I popped a CD in, pulled out the lyric sheet and just followed along the stories the writer sings. I guess I can describe the difference between this CD and whatever else might be out there now as the simple difference between hearing and listening.

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