The Tallest Man On Earth, released his latest gem on Tuesday, There's No Leaving Now and the result is his best album yet.
Since his debut in 2006, Matsson has steadily gained fans with his brand of folk music. Given his vocal style and bare arrangements, he has been compared to Bob Dylan on more than a few occasions. Although it has its merit, I find more similarities with Van Morrison, particularly on the first half of this album.
From the soft keys on To Just Grow Away, to the freight train shuffle and weaving guitars of Revelation Blues, there is a warmth and texture reminiscent of Van Morrison's Moondance. Matsson's ability to craft simple, concise songs often lead to an instant connection and comfort very few artists can achieve.
One of the things I like best about the album, is that it never sound rushed or cluttered. Every instrument has enough space to contribute, but not enough to wander off. The first single, 1904, is a perfect example with scattered single notes that brighten the song like a star-filled night. A lesser artist would have drenched the song with them, instead we are left hoping for more.
The title track, There's No Leaving Now, a gorgeous piano ballad, is filled with so much despair, it's hard not to think of your toughest days. You can practically hear the struggle as he counters subdued piano against stretched, weary vocals.
The entire album is available to stream right now, with a free download of 1904, courtesy of Dead Oceans. As an added bonus, I've added his cover of Paul Simon's Graceland, released earlier this year on his Record Store Day release, King of Spain.