>> Ruth Gerson: This Can't Be My life (2010)

Artist: Ruth Gerson

Album: This Can't Be My Life

Members: Ruth Gerson

Genre: Other

Label: Wrong Records

Tracks: 11

Type: LP

Release Date: July 20, 2010

Discs: 1

Rating: 3.85 (out of 4.00)

Grade: A-

Official Site

This Can’t Be My Life has an interesting history which intrigued me from the beginning. Set to be released in 2007 Gerson opted not to because she didn’t want to tour and leave her children behind, especially since becoming a single parent and the ordeal of going through the process of divorce. As a songwriter/poet its natural to feel that the greatest writing you can possibly come across lay at the aftermath of life’s turmoil. Your more perceptible to honing the raw passions of life and be inspired to brave putting yourself out there almost as a therapeutic release. I expected no less from Gerson and wasn’t disappointed.

While the album begins with a very Fiona Apple type sound to it in its opener, Fresh Air, the power of that first track lay in the lyrical and the ambiance of the piano driven core. It’s the start of a narrative that works with the albums testimony-like history, stating this is where I went wrong but despite it all this is how I overcame. As the album unfolds it reads like your flipping backwards through someone’s journal. This Can’t Be My Life, the title track of the album, reads like a realization. Fresh Air may be Gerson writing from greener pastures This Can’t Be My Life is definitely Gerson coming to the breaking point where keeping things together is no longer an option. While the tempo of the music is contemporary pushing to be more rock you can still feel an animosity helping to push the lyrical through with a passion enforced by a cross between frustration and anger without stretching the control of the albums direction musically. The following two tracks are fine but seemed to be directed in a more constructed manner. Bulletproof with its repetitive chorus sounds more like the album is reaching to make this its radio friendly single. Stay With Me, the following track, comes off more like experimentation, again a repetitiveness to the overall track that doesn’t strive to inspire or play as release. Someday Soon is a return to the albums living breathing sense of history, a subtle track that can be interpreted as Gerson reproaching herself or her antagonist or both. I panned over the track several times and my mind went in both directions.

While technically this isn’t an album that I can see in heavy rotation on my play list its definitely an album that’s seems designed as a light specifically made to accompany you in darker times. For me its power is reminiscent of NIN’s The Downward Spiral, The Rollins Band’s End of Silence, or any of the profound and insightful albums that simply speak to you in times of need and comfort you when you feel as if your all alone and doubting your ability to climb out a hole you find yourself in. As always final judgment is yours. Enjoy. 




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