Matt York be Mine

When I first popped in this CD I had a preconceived notion about what this may sound like. You know, your typical pop rock album, but as soon as track one began it erased any previous thoughts I had about Matt York. The second release from this Oakville Ontario native is appropriately titled Mine, as to say that “this is my sound and what I am presenting to the world”. This album begins with a traditional gospel like tune which instantly sets the mood for the rest of the album. From the beginning I am super stoked to listen to the rest of this album.
As the album continues the songs are musically well written, but at parts reminds me of a mash up containing Jack Johnson, Lenny Kravitz with a sprinkle of Michael McDonald. When the player lands on the song Someday I instantly see the more playful side of Matt and his band. This song displays the vocal range of Matt and with the gradual addition of instruments makes the the intensity of the mood increase. Props to the keyboard/organ player, Scott Galloway, who is able to mesh an traditional organ sound with the well scripted guitar solo. The CD weaves in and out of forgettable songs, laced with hints of John Mayer and Broken Social Scene. With hidden gems like Lucky Man and One Day, Matt is willing to open up to his audience and let them see the song writer that lies beneath. Adding a more melancholy feeling with backing vocals that left me with chills, One Day had me hitting the repeat button a few times. At time, while listening to the album, I felt like I knew the direction Matt was taking his album, then just when I thought I had him figured out he switches it up and takes it down a completely different road. To be precise, while bobbin' my head along to Mine, I instantly heard “The Boss”, as though Matt was listening to Bruce Springsteen’s Born In The USA. But as soon as the chorus kicks in the song changes from a steady driving sound into a super happy almost Ben Lee sound, which left me in a semi-confused state of mind. Wrapping up the album is Now And Then, and I have to say it was the best way to end the album. Like the opening track Now and Then has a real soulful Motown feeling with a hint of gospel.
All in all the album was good, although I believe that album would have been stronger if Matt was able to keep that gospel/Motown sound that was displayed at the beginning and the end of the album. With well written lyrics and a strong backing band Matt was album to construct a audibly pleasing contribution to the pop/rock/folk. As I eject the CD, it leaves me with an itch that I could only scratch with artist Michael McDonald or possibly even the Blind Boys of Alabama. I highly recommend this album for those who enjoy Jack Johnson, John Mayer, Jose Gonzalez etc.

It's Chris James Bitch.