Sound — 8
The first tracks I ever heard by the matches were from their somewhat amateur album E.Von Dahl killed the vocals. Don't get me wrong, it's a very impressive CD for a relatively new band. However, when I bought there new CD 'Decomposer' I was rather surprised. This is a quite different sound from the band, a very experimental and interesting album. I haven't quite heard anything like this, it's a mix of drum machines and violins, with the vocals of Shawn Harris stretched over it. I really do think that his voice is a very unusual and exciting. When I saw the Matches live, I was drawn by the live performance he gave, he made the band incredible live! The gutiar on this record is very solo-ey, if that makes sense. There are very few chords used in the songs, as if it's a constant improvisation from Devoto, and it is. It's the kind of album with not a single song which any band would be able to cover. This album sounds quite indie, but obviously isn't because of where the Matches came from. I basically recommend it, I was very pleasantly surprised, as it flew the band immediately from a sort of mix of punk pop and emo to an eclectic new sound. Buy it!
Lyrics — 4
The lyrics aren't the strong point of the album, they seem very irrelevant and not about anything in particular. For instance "We know about sex" repeated about three times isn't exactly great writing. It doesn't really put me off though, becuase the musical skill is so great, but the lyrics really just seem a jumble of nice little phrases, that don't really come together as well as they could. If I were to edit this album myself, I would improve the lyrics, definetely. The singing goes very well with the music, Harris can reach different pitches very easily and seems to act out the lyrics in his voice, but I don't really think they improve the lyrics.
Overall Impression — 6
I think this compares very well to what's out at the moment, it's very unusual, I've definetely never heard any band sounding remotely like the Matches in this album, not the first one. The most impressive songs are definetely "Salty Eyes", "Papercut skins" (oh stop with the adjectives), "What Katie Said" and "Didi, My Doe Part 2". These are definetely the high points of the album. Not all the songs are as good as this, but I think the overall sound is great. The point of this review is to sort of promote the band. They are embarassingly unknown, and yet everyone knows who they are. For instance if you type them in on google, few things come up. Check them out, and go take a listen. And if you like the album go see them live, I don't even like them that much, but I can safely say that they are probably one of the five best bands I have ever seen live, Shawn Harris is like a musical actor!