Ryan Adams is mining an unexpected influence – hard rock icons AC/DC – for the sonic design of his upcoming 16th LP, out November 4th. "When I run, I listen to [an iPod] Nano that I have," the singer-songwriter told Entertainment Weekly. "I put all the AC/DC records on from back to front, or I'll listen to the best of stuff from the '80s: Springsteen, or [Nick] Hornsby, and I'll listen to what is going on there. I was listening to AC/DC's Fly on the Wall, and that's when I realized what I had to do for the record."
Last fall, Adams told EW his next album would feature material inspired by Bruce Springsteen's Darkness on the Edge of Town and the Smith's Meat Is Murder. But he's since added several disparate influences into the mix – including classic rock act Bachman-Turner Overdrive ("Takin' Care of Business," "You Ain't Seen Nothing Yet") and pop hit-makers Electric Light Orchestra, both of whom helped expand his guitar production expertise.
"I was like, 'Wow!' I understand the multicolored guitar tone moments now," he said. "You can layer stuff. I really just learned a lot."
The songwriter ended up with "quite literally 80 [songs] – probably more!" – but trimmed down the track list to 12, working alongside producer Don Was. "How do I make a real distinct record where anybody listens to it and says, 'That's the truth from beginning to end?'" he said. "So it's like exercise. It sucks in the beginning. But then you get into it."
In May, he released a massive box set edition of his breakthrough 2000 debut, Heartbreaker. The deluxe release includes the original remastered album along with demos, unheard outtakes and a DVD featuring a previously unreleased solo acoustic show.