Matt Hannah – Let the Lonely Fade
Matt Hannah based out of Minnesota just released his latest CD entitled “Let the Lonely Fade” in 2014. I must say there’s a real sense of cathartic musical independence here via this latest work from Hannah. While everything here on this 4 track set entitled is shall I say exceptionally entertaining it also manages to cover a pretty wide range of musical styles. When you listen to the music of Matt Hannah it’s almost as if you are dreaming. I can’t really hear many influences and styles because he’s all over the place. I’ll give it stab anyway: Love Spit Love, Peter Murphy, Ian McColloch, Sad Lover and Giants, Gene Loves Jezebel. A few more: Bruce Springsteen, Joseph Arthur, Beach House, MGMT, and Gram Parsons perhaps. I may be way off. But it needs to be said that the real magic is how Hannah doesn’t hold much back regardless of the outcome. In many ways he’s quite fearless and also manages to blend all these above ingredients into his own unique signature sound. Hannah encompasses the rich history of Americana Blues Roots, then broadens and reshapes it into something youthful, reckless and very passionate. He sings and laments about thing he has no control over. All this and more makes Hannah’s songs uniquely brilliant. A few tracks notably stand out for me in particular. “Midnight Hurt” and “Colorado Girl” are 2 very strong tracks that deliver pure grooved magic with an amazing writers touch. Much of the 4 track experience present straight forward Alternative rock that is like I said before – about topics that are close to the heart. Despite this somehow the music has a more of an organic bluesy/pop feel as the album hits the deck running.
In my opinion Hannah is a modern example of classic psychedelic-alternative folk rock popular in the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s. I can hear acts like Chris and Thomas, Blind Pilot and Citizen Cope. Above all there is an underlying yearning love passion theme going on here. The musicianship is shall I say, off the chain. The vocal front from Hannah is gravitating. White really draws you in and I’m convinced he know what he’s doing behind a microphone. Another highlight for me is “Long Way to Drive” and “1000 Miles” which exemplifies his sound to a T. I like how these songs are back to back It’s got plenty of cool melodies and interesting lyrical content – but above all it shows just how Hannah masterfully navigates through this simplistic yet amazing writing style – while feeling very comfortable in his own skin.
Criticism: Hannah needs to implement more instrumentation in his next release. Things like cello, horns, accordion, stand-up bass, sporadic percussion, organ, Rhodes Electric piano, strings and fiddles. As impressive as the music is it’s a bit too conservative. Either that or totally go towards an even more unplugged feel making for a pure acoustic experience with no electric instrumentation.
So are you thinking what I’m thinking? Somehow all the above is not compatible with the superficial musical times we live in? A guy like Matt Hannah is well-suited for a wide audience that enjoys emotionally driven Alternative Folk/Rock with a poetic flair. It modestly combines amazing writing via an innocent look and sound. I believe there’s a detached and disgruntled audience just waiting for Matt Hannah to arrive.
Barbara Clarke. Approved by Cyrus Rhodes