7 or 8 years ago I mail-ordered a boxed set of 7 cds with packaging built from a collapsed barn from a quirky singer/songwriter known as Captain Chaos. I think only 50 were made and I listened to these 7 CDs non-stop for almost six months. That was my introduction to folk-punk, or whatever you wanna call it. I have no idea what Chaos is up to these days, but listening to Matt Pless leaves me with a sense of nostalgia, bringing me back to that time period and reminding me that “you never forget your first.” I don’t listen to many bands/singer/song-writers of the genre, but the few I do listen to really stand out. I imagine, like any other genre, that countless bands exist that sound the same and follow the same sentiment/ideals, however I’m willing to bet that only a few persevere because of their hard work, dedication and well, song-writing ability. Matt Pless is one of them.
“Tumbleweed,” the latest full length of Matt’s impressive repertoire of musical output, houses 12 hook-friendly tunes that will have you singing along, nodding your head, tapping your foot, giggling and thinking. Mr. Pless calls upon various literary elements to keep his words interesting and clever with an extreme honest and almost uncomfortable undertone. In 12 tracks he sings of everything from letting his father down, drug use, minor crime sprees, love, god, technology and tall/short tales which all could be metaphors (that really happened). His use of humor and his catchy melodies make his message clear and accessible, while adhering to the “don’t take yourself too seriously” protocol. You won’t find the distraction of over-production, over instrumentation or tasteless noodling on Tumbleweed. What you will find is one guitar and one friendly voice ready and willing to make your day that much better.
Matt toured and continues to tour extensively on the album, hitting the DIY circuit hard and relentlessly. Chances are Matt Pless played your town in some barn, basement, living room, storefront, street corner, kitchen etc and you probably missed it. Don’t fret. I’m sure he will return, so keep a look out because he is definitely worth checking out. Listen to “Tumbleweed” below.