Matthew Anderson - Noble Dust
Record Label: Mrsvee Recordings
Release Date: March 1, 2011
Matthew Anderson, where have you been this whole time?
For those of you scratching your head and asking, “who?”, Matthew Anderson is a multi-instrumental musician from Kent, OH who has been playing music since his early childhood. He has released two EPs (Fragments, Uncaged) and one full-length album (Merciless Ocean), all through Mrsvee Recordings.
His most recent release, Noble Dust, introduces a more atmospheric, less rock sound than that found on previous releases. Throughout the record, Anderson weaves multiple instruments together with rich ambient textures to create a haunting yet soothing sound. All the while, Anderson throws in personal lyrics of love, life and regret to create an atmospheric indie rock album filled with sheer honesty.
The thing that makes Anderson different from other musicians is his ability to blend numerous instruments together perfectly. His sound is able pull you in and gently caress you from beginning to end. This is made evident on opening “In Solitude”.
“In The Womb” brings forth Anderson’s vocal talent. “Summer” presents a more warm tone, combining the banjo and an acoustic guitar to create an atmosphere similar to that of the season he sings about in the song.
“You Sweep Men Away Like Dust” shows Anderson’s impressive guitar work while on “Telephone Sea Shells”, Anderson presents his most thoughtful lyrics, such as “Live in regret / Or reverse and forget”. “Silence” begins with a calm strumming until turning up the distortion, transitioning into probably the darkest song on the album. While no words are spoken on the song, “Regret” can be seen as Anderson’s lament for his past mistakes and moving forward into the future as the album ends.
But Noble Dust has it’s flaws as well. The main problem with the album is that some of the songs are really long, with most going over the five minute mark, making it hard to listen to all the songs in one listen. In fact, it can be hard to figure out if you’re on a different song or if it’s still the same song playing because he constantly switches up what’s going on in each song a lot. Too much if you ask me.
Another weak point is that the vocals, as good as they are, are kept at somewhat of a minimum, being overshadowed by the instrumentation. I feel if Anderson would have cut up some of the longer songs, made shorter songs out of them and added more singing parts, he could have made a much more digestible record.
But don’t let the song lengths polarize your view of the record. If you look at it as a whole, Noble Dust is simply a testament to Anderson’s amazing musicianship and song writing ability. There is not enough praise for him for being able to create a sound that is unique and specific in a time where bands are rehashing the same sound over and over. A lot of artists today could learn a thing or two from Matthew Anderson and with his amazing talent, it won’t be long until they are.