Sponsored: Mathieu Santos + Vinyl Giveaway
Welcome to a special edition of mySpoonful plus vinyl giveaway, sponsored by Ra Ra Riot bass player Mathieu Santos! To celebrate the release of Mat’s new solo album, Massachusetts 2010, mySpoonful is running an exclusive giveaway of five vinyl copies. To be entered to win, all you need to do is subscribe here to mySpoonful’s free email newsletter, which delivers the best in new indie music from this site three times a week.
The winner will be selected at random from new subscribers that sign up here.
In the meantime, enjoy the spoonful of Mathieu Santos below. For a limited time, you can also listen to a free stream of Mathieu’s new Massachusetts 2010 album here!
Ra Ra Riot, The Boston Bruins :-)
Mat says, "I basically made this album on a whim, accidentally, and had a blast doing it! It was the first time I'd ever really tried songwriting and singing and I wanted to see what I could come up with. It was a ton of fun, getting to experiment and work without any pressure."
The songs that compose Massachusetts 2010 were first written last year in - you guessed it - the great state of Massachusetts. Following their recording, however, those demos were set aside and left to sit while Santos spent time on the road with his main band, Ra Ra Riot. In the winter and spring of 2011, he returned to the 10 songs with fresh perspective and a critical distance from the context in which they were originally written. Originally trained as a painter and applying his visual artist's focus on only the most essential compositional elements, Santos borrowed a friend's guesthouse in rural New Jersey where he finalized the album in just a few days. He worked quickly, maintaining the impulsive freedom of the original writing process but stripping down the palette and creating an arresting sonic environment that sparkles with tantalizing abstract imagery and finely-observed details, set against a backdrop of wide open spaces.
Santos sings with an echoing, bounding tenderness on opener "I Can Hear The Trains Coming," and its balance of youthful exuberance and skillful elegance sets the tone for the rest of the album. Spritely vocals bounce off stark arrangements, the instrumentation referencing the natural musicality of ordinary things-from seagull shrieks to dial-up modem rings. As the album title suggests, these songs represent a particular time and place for Santos, and although the lyrics are largely impressionistic, phrases emerge regularly to make the album resonate with echoes of warmth, loneliness, love, regret, loss, and joy. Even if you weren't there then, Massachusetts 2010 is a place and time that anyone with ears and a heart can hear and feel.