Monday, August 27, 2012

Matt Mays: "Coyote" (album review)

It's not out of the line to call Matt Mays a Canadian rock veteran at this point.  The Halifax-native comes out of a mini-hiatus on September 4th to release Coyote, his first album in four years.  Like any good veteran, Mays shows little rust on this new effort.

Blue collar Springsteen-esque rock has been Mays' calling card for quite some time.  That hasn't changed with the layoff.  In fact, the record opens with a gritty rocker, "Indio", perfect for any road trip.  That's matched by the equally hard-driving "Slow Burning Luck".  "Dull Knife" is a Neil Young-style roots/blues hybrid.

There are more grooves this time around, with Mays digging way down for "Drop the Bombs".  A funky bassline is cranked up on the all-too-brief "Airstrike".

The lead single "Take It On Faith" is a catchy, smooth-flowing rocker than manages to retain its rough edges.  The harmonica-heavy "Queen of Portland Street" provides listeners the best opportunity to clap along.

Mays dips into World music for some of the sounds on Coyote.  A Spanish-influence hangs over the brass-tooting, danceable "Madre Padre".  On a couple of occasions, "Ain't That The Truth" and "Stoned", there's the very faintest of island undertones.

Sure Matt Mays isn't a groundbreaking artist with a sound that will alter how you view music.  No, he's a hard-working, reliable, sweaty rock n' roller.  And we need those kinds of musicians in our lives.

Best tracks: "Take It On Faith", "Queen of Portland Street"

Track listing for Coyote:
  • Indio
  • Airstrike
  • Ain't That The Truth
  • Take It On Faith
  • Loveless
  • Dull Knife
  • Drop The Bombs
  • Rochambo
  • Slow Burning Luck
  • Madre Padre
  • Zita
  • Stoned
  • Queen of Portland Street
  • Chase the Light

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

If you haven't gone to a Matt Mays show, do yourself a favour the next time he's in town. Balls out.