Scott Matthews is back, and he’s brought with him a new album in the shape of Home Part 1. If you haven’t heard of him before, this is your chance to catch up with the rest of us and see just what a talented musician you’re missing out on. Having already won an Ivor Novello award for previous single Elusive and toured with the great Robert Plant, Home Part 1 is an album that shows off his deep love of music, and really shows what Scott has learnt in his years of success.
The record kicks off with Virgina, with gentle but skilful picking warming you up as an ongoing musical hum in the background gives the track a haunting feel. Scott’s soft and comforting vocals keeping everything in check, to-ing and fro-ing above the melody. The Outsider lets the listeners imagination run wild, allowing them to paint their own picture with the magic of the lyrics; its clever in that different people will bring away different meanings from this song, and just shows the amount of layers in Scott’s music.
The singers penchant for an ol’ country song crops up now and then throughout the record, especially prevalent on track Let’s Get You, whereas Sunlight calls on the help of influences from the Beatles and Fleetwood Mac to create a subtle humidity and catch the essence of a perfect summers evening.
The singer has always been great at creating lasting imagery in a sentence or two, and he doesn’t let us down on this record. 86 Floors Fro, is a particular highlight, with Matthews singling of love and his afflictions, putting you right there on the train with the girl in the song: ‘she has her mothers eyes, the kind where darkness takes a shine’.
Scott’s apparent ease with his skill is frightening now, but don’t let this fool you, he’s worked hard to get this far. The singer manages to make the instruments meld together and create a master class in original and layered folk music, all held up with his enticing vocals and beautiful words. The only criticism would be that some people might find the lack of a more upbeat song or two a little over bearing, but in my mind this would take away from the overall essence of the record. Home Part 1 is up there with Scott’s best work and is a real achievement for the talented singer.