Ryan Driver

Exclaim! - - REVIEWS - LAURA STAN­LEY

Care­less Thoughts

On Care­less Thoughts, Toron­to­based, multi-tal­ented artist Ryan Driver is highly in­quis­i­tive, ques­tion­ing how to find peace and see beauty in a volatile world, and he ru­mi­nates on the trou­ble love causes. Al­though th­ese sub­jects are tinted with sad­ness, this is a good-hu­moured batch of songs, and Driver’s re­flec­tions end up be­ing a ve­hi­cle for cel­e­bra­tion. Care­less Thoughts has a cin­e­matic qual­ity to it; the songs could be the sound­track to an emo­tive drama or a beloved rom-com. With gen­tle plucks of a gui­tar, whis­per­ing strings and Driver’s steady pi­ano plods, th­ese songs are a soft mix of jazz, folk and pop. Opener “They Call This Ev­ery­thing” and later track “Olive Tree” are string-heavy se­quences whose warmth and beauty are akin to a seem­ingly never-end­ing sun­set. On al­bum high­light “It Must Be Dark Tonight,” a playful folk tune and duet with Ta­mara Lin­de­man of the Weather Sta­tion, Driver asks, “If you don’t like trou­ble, my friend, then what is there left to life?” Here, as through­out Care­less Thoughts, Driver re­solves to find joy even in dif­fi­cult times. He looks for

light in the dark­ness, and en­cour­ages us to do the same. (Tin An­gel, tinan­gel­records.co.uk)

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