@planetmosh reviews the debut album by .@LittleMatador out on .@FictionRecords
After catching Little Matador a couple of times last year as they supported Nine Inch Nails and Queens Of The Stone Age, I thought it might be worthwhile checking out their self titled debut record as Snow Patrol guitarist Nathan Connolly takes a bold step out front and center to take on vocal duties with a newer, harder edged sound.
Knowing exactly what each band member would bring to the sound Connolly went about bringing on-board some stellar musical talent from around the UK and Ireland. The fuzz infused, triple guitar approach of Connolly, Dave Magee (LaFaro) & Tired Pony’s Troy Stewart (who also shares vocal duties), provides a massive soundscape which is held together throughout with a solid back-line of Gavin Fox (Idlewild) on bass and Binzer Brennan (The Frames) on drums.
Right from album opener ‘Stitch Yourself Up’ (which is also the first single to be released), the listener is immediately given the impression that the band as a collective are having a great deal of freedom & fun away from their respective ‘day jobs’.
There is a certain quirkiness to the overall Little Matador sound, but it’s not something obscure or dated, but is rather refreshing very accessible. There also seems to be a healthy respect given to the influences of the band, as is particularly evidenced on ‘Liar Liar’, which has some very healthy punk homage in its main guitar hook & overall song structure. ‘Leaving Anyway’ while the slowest track on the album is also reminiscent of something Johnny Cash might have had on his American Recordings, such is the extent of the diverse influence in sound on this record.
All in all these are songs that are incredibly catchy and actually quite memorable, after hearing them previously last year on just two occasions, then listening to the album they seemed oddly familiar again. Connolly takes his new vocal duties in his stride and actually seems to thrive on the challenge. The swagger & raw energy of tracks like ‘Boom Boom’ and ‘Gimme All You Got’ mean this is modern Rock N’ Roll that is best served up live, and with Little Matador set to play a number of club & festival dates up and down the UK this summer, I have no doubt they will come away with armies of new fans.
1.Stitch Yourself Up
6.Give & Take
7.Gimme All You Got
10.This Crooked Wood
Nathan Connolly – Lead Vocals, Guitar
Troy Stewart – Guitar
Dave Magee – Guitar
Gavin Fox – Bass
Binzer Brennan – Drums