February 27, 2017 – Having spent nearly two decades building a fervent fan base for his music, Matt the Electrician wasn’t sure if a typical album cycle was the right path for a working class musician like himself. Instead, beginning in 2015, Matt embarked on a 7-inch series of releases (with digital distribution). During the course of the project, Matt worked with six different artists, mostly from his hometown of Austin, TX. On June 9, 2017, the sixth record in the series will be released, recorded with Austin’s The Deer, and at the same time, Matt will be releasing a double album of sorts, The Doubles, including all of the songs from the 7-inch project, sequenced as a proper album, as well as new versions of each song, recorded with his current trio.
“Over the last two years, I’ve been touring, often with the trio, and singing all of these songs, and the versions are different, and have evolved since the recordings,” says Matt. “So I wanted there to be a record of that.” Matt will continue to tour behind the double album release, including a booking at the 2017 Newport Folk Festival.
The songs on The Doubles, first interpreted and recorded two at a time, are each born of the voices of two artists, each pair unified in their partnership. One version the original work, then new iterations, each echoing the intent of the other. The Doubles is a celebration of relinquishing the restraints of artistic control while maintaining creative vision. An assertion that in the human longing for singularity, we are forever bound by our codependence.
“I grew up with vinyl, but by the time I was releasing music in my 20s, vinyl was dead, and I figured I would never get to hear my songs on a record player,” explains Matt. “It actually kind of bummed me out. But when vinyl made a comeback, I thought, ‘oh this is great, I can put something out.’ And I was really drawn to the 45, the 7-inch. That was the first recorded music I ever purchased with my own money. I always loved the deliberateness, and the ceremony that playing a 45 requires. You only listen to one song, and then you have to turn the record over, so you can’t really walk away, or do other things, it forces you to focus on the experience of the music entirely.”
Over the course of the 7-inch project, Matt worked with a varied group of artists on each release - Bluegrass band,Wood & Wire; electronic folk artist Little Brave; ethereal indie-folk songwriter Dana Falconberry; free jazz/folk guitarist and songwriter Wilson Marks: husband & wife songwriters and producers Paul Curreri & Devon Sproule; and heady altfolk band The Deer. “Each band brought their own ideas and vibe to the recording process, and it was such an inspiring experience to soak in all these different sounds and ways of playing music, and it definitely changed the way I was writing throughout the project,” Matt says. “And, as it turned out, it even influenced the makeup of my current touring band, which is a vocal-centric trio, featuring Seela, who has sung with me for years, and Little Brave (Stephanie Macias) who I recorded the second 7-inch with.”
Hear the 7-inch tracks that have been released to date:
Matt the Electrician with Wood & Wire: http://bit.ly/2lVKBUc
Matt the Electrician with Little Brave: http://bit.ly/2mAZhF7
Matt the Electrician with the Dana Falconberry Trio: http://bit.ly/1VhtZSz
Matt the Electrician with Wilson Marks Trio: http://bit.ly/2lKxh4u
Matt the Electrician with Paul Curreri & Devon Sproule: http://bit.ly/2m0wgpM