Personal songs from the archive of folk/Americana artist.
Matthew Check is a singer-songwriter based out of Brooklyn, New York. ‘The November Album’ originally dates from recordings made in 2013, but which are finally seeing the light of day eight years on. This is a really enjoyable collection of acoustically-driven rootsy country-pop songs, with a definite early ‘70’s Laurel Canyon sound at times.
Opening track and lead single ‘Couple of Reasons’ has a loose feel with an irresistible Bo Diddly rhythm, and an ensemble chorus which is so catchy. It also has a cool video which was reviewed elsewhere in American UK’s archive by Andrew Frolish (check it out here ). ‘Lovely to Have Met You’ follows this with an exquisitely world-weary tone, and more than a hint of 60’s era Dylan in the chorus, harmonica and all. ‘Josie Revisited’ has a gorgeous melody, absolutely rooted in the 70’s singer-songwriter sound of Dan Fogelberg, Dan Hill, Gordon Lightfoot etc. Very delicate and very lovely.
Not everything is a home run, and ‘Further and Further’ and ‘On My Mind’, although not bad tracks, sound a little too much like demos, and perhaps offer less in terms of interest lyrically and musically. Still, Check has released a counterpart EP ‘The Amazing Worth’, which is also well worth seeking out. Recorded in 2008 but also being released this year, this comprises predominantly piano-led songs, with a slightly more introspective feel.
Check feels 2022 may be a time for new music, although he also notes he still has plenty of already-recorded material in the locker. The quality of some of these songs suggests there may be some more treasures to be had from the archive.