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Matt Charles is old school – no fads, no fashion.
The Tasmanian-born singer songwriter’s debut album, Java Tsunami, chases down a classic rock sound that’s fueled with honest and achingly powerful songs.
Steeped in the rock sensibility of his musical heroes, the album’s lean and tight arrangements add weight and depth to Charles’ writing, while inspired playing from lead guitarist Andrew Gatenby adds just the right amount of muscle.
The band rocks; all are old friends, they’re having a good time and it shows. They help make songs like Sacred Heart gleam and shimmer, while Ashes, with its seductive rhythm and understated melody twists around the lyrics to help draw out the song’s dark truth.
Matt Charles writes songs that are honest and clear, in the way that neither the music nor the lyric gets in the way of the other. Its themes are universal, and tips its hat to the tradition of folk and blues, where life, love and loss strikes the chord in each of us, regardless of what musical fashion dictates.
Java Tsunami is a rich seam of light and shade, a song set that is uplifting and hopeful, dark and truthful. It’s a conversation Charles invites you to join – come in and sit down for a while.
[Rob McGlynn – Freelance Journalist]