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Mat D. | Merciful 66

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United States - Iowa

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Country: Americana Country: Country Folk Moods: Mood: Brooding
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Merciful 66

by Mat D.

Folk Rising's Album of the year 2008 - Hard luck, acoustic Americana fueled by the heartache channeled from dive motels, jaded lovers, death and the remnants of life from the cracks of route 66.
Genre: Country: Americana
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Lucky Number Seven
Mat d.
3:25 $0.99
2. The Ghost of Huddie Ledbetter
Mat d.
3:11 $0.99
3. In God's Name
Mat d.
4:22 $0.99
4. Red Prairie
Mat d.
3:14 $0.99
5. Promissary Road
Mat d.
4:32 $0.99
6. Gasoline Angel
Mat d.
2:15 $0.99
7. Gypsy Town
Mat d.
4:05 $0.99
8. Merciful 66
Mat d.
4:25 $0.99
9. North Star
Mat d.
3:26 $0.99
10. Metropolicana
Mat d.
3:54 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
Folk Rising's Album of the year 2008 - Mat d., singer / songwriter from Sioux City, IA works with recurring themes of hard living, lost love and heart wrenching spirituality using the "banks of old Route 66" as it's musical inspiration and lyrical backdrop. The album, produced by collaborator and guitarist Kurt Mullins stays true to Mat's acoustic roots, expanding on the stripped down style of 'Gasoline Rattle" with a more somber tone and focus than it's predecessor. The album, dedicated to the memory of Mat's father who died in early 2008, serves as a journey of grief, comfort and personal reflection for the songwriter. Mat stated that "following my father's death the tone of the album changed dramatically. Much of the material I had prepared for the CD no longer seemed to represent what I was feeling; so we shelved several of the songs and I went about working on music that became very cathartic for me."

Merciful 66 chronicles some of Mat's most heartfelt songwriting and performances to date. A few of the album's songs draw directly from Mat's own experiences while others tell an allegorical story of his father's life and work. Even though much of the album ventures to the darker side of the tracks, Mat's signature redemptive and glimmer of hope cynicism remains intact from the Coney Island inspired "Gypsy Town" to the gospel flavored "Gasoline Angel". The theme of mercy is woven tightly into each track from the old timey big tent revival holler of "the Ghost of Huddie Ledbetter" to the bittersweet tone of "Merciful 66" and "Metropolicana". A document of hard luck living and death with remnants of redemption and grace, Merciful 66 not only leads the listener into the grave, but lifts one up from the depths briefly; perhaps long enough for a taste of resurrection.



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Mat D. Merciful 66
There are singer songwriters and there are real singer songwriters. Many of them are merely filling in time whilst at university playing at being in the music business. Then there are the true troubadours that sing the songs of the lost souls lost on the highway of life. Such a troubadour is Mat D.

His songs reek of the decay of the souls brought by cigarettes, alcohol, heartbreak and hard times. You get the feeling that the meeting with the Devil down at the crossroads is coming soon as he sings his way through this collection of tales of the downtrodden. Take "The Ghost of Huddie Ledbetter", for example, as the protagonist of the song finds himself "sleeping on a dirt road waiting for the mercy to come". You know that dirt road leads to redemption. Likewise "North Star", as the title suggests, looks for a way out of the darkness and into the light. His words have the poetry of the true storyteller and they have soul. Like the late Lee Hazelwood, his songs speak from the heart. There is affection for the subjects of his songs but also the same lack of sentimentality. Life hurts and that's the way it always has been and that's how it always will be.

On the downside, some of the songs would have benefitted from a band (in fact, The Band came to mind…) to give them more sonic impact. That does not detract from Mat D's song writing or storytelling abilities, of course, but even the casual listener can hear that there is space left for more. Even bearing that in mind, this is still an album that is well worth seeking out.

Folk Rising

Mat d. raises the bar even higher
After Setting the bar so high with his critically acclaimed and award winning \"Gasoline Rattle\" - Folk Rising was convinced that Mat d. would not be able to raise the bar even higher with future releases. But he has definitely done so with his new album \"Merciful 66\"

Gary Kappenman

Folk Rising's Album of the year 2008!
Folk Rising™ Music Productions, LLC (Folk Rising)'s 2008 Folk Album of the year is awarded to Mat D for his Merciful 66 album. Gary Kappenman, A&R for Folk Rising, stated "as I sit here listening to Mat’s Merciful 66 album for about the 20th time, I’m considering that reviewers of Mat’s first solo album, Gasoline Rattle, reminded them of a young Steve Earle. While I enjoy listening to Steve Earle’s work, I believe Mat’s new album goes significantly beyond Steve Earle’s work in both the striking imagery of his lyrics and the heartfelt soulfulness he brings to his vocals. If you like Steve Earle’s work, you’ll love Mat’s new Merciful 66 album!”