With unique and mellifluous vocals on uplifting songs full of indie swagger, Matt Wilson creates the perfect folk-pop fusion, cushioned by the lush, velvet sounds of his guitar.
Listen to Life’s A Beach. It’s that moment in a teen drama series when our hero looks up and sees the blue skies of hope in front of him, it’s the happy endings of one thousand Michael Cera films. The soft, Badly Drawn Boy-esque tune almost talks to you, tells you it’s going to be all right.
From sunny Girvan, on Scotland’s south west coast, and now having a capital time in Edinburgh, this Beach Busker has been listening to an incredible range of influences since the womb: The Smiths, The Who, The Jam and Echo and The Bunnymen. And it’s with a mod attitude and surfer’s soul, this 18-year-old composes songs effortlessly evoking his inspiration, the shore and growing up close to it. Matt’s in tune to the turning tides, the sands of rhyme, the rocks and reefs that slow you down, sometimes ground you. He’s a young man with horizons. He's current.
Matt says: “My secret weapon is my Fender acoustic stringed in Nashville tuning. The ‘jangle’ and ‘twang’ off this is beautiful and helps add texture of my sound. A sound heavily influenced by Bon Iver as well.”
A big fan of Dashboard Confessional, their music introduced him to different tunings and you can hear tracks in open C tuning and DADGAD, giving him a thick, full sound, and providing him the perfect foundation to layer with riffs the likes of which Johnny Marr and The Sundays’ David Gavurin would be proud.
Matt’s flirty but gentle acoustic arrangements are imbued with a maturity and talent that belie his youth, and even when he sings of break-ups and melancholy, such as in Love is Dragging Me Down, there’s a pretty twinkle of guitar, like a knowing smile, perhaps the optimism of his young years. One guitar hauntingly drives on, its open chords powered by the sentiment, while another picks out a tune full of hope.
And that’s what’s great about Matt’s songs: They have more hooks than an angling convention organised by the former New Order bassist.
He’s a clever composer. On Journey to Anywhere, he assimilates the sound of the rushing train he sings about. You actually feel you’re in that carriage, speeding through country, the sunshine strong through the window. His appealing voice and playing make you complicit in his escape.
This young tunesmith may not yet be THE flower of Scotland, but was certainly plucked from God’s own garden of sonic delights. Think of a young Jeff Buckley, with the jingle-jangle loveliness of Bon Iver and Turin Brakes and you wouldn’t be too far off the aural sensations of Matt Wilson and his soundscapes. And in one song, he mentions stairwells.
Don’t take our word for it that he's going to be big. Matt’s only been playing in the city for a bit, but here’s what people have been saying already:
“Despite being one young man on a stage, he owns it. He really does. His voice is West Coast and although he is indeed from Girvan on the West Coast of Scotland, I’m talking about theUS here! He has a kind of non-accented Gram Parsons mixed with Ray LaMontagne thing going on” 80eightblog.wordpress.com
“This young singer songwriter is advancing quickly and is not to be missed” Electric Circus
Matt is making waves in his new home of Edinburgh. On the back of a fantastic Liquid Rooms set, he has now joined the Voltage line-up. If you see he’s playing somewhere, give yourself a treat – go on, you deserve it, and you’ll thank us later – go check this Beach Busker out.
Dashboard Confessional, Bon Iver, Ellie Goulding, The Smiths, City And Colour...