Michael Matera | Two

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neverwhererecords.com PassAlong QtrNote Tradebit Audio Lunchbox PayPlay Apple iTunes Bitmunk BuyMusic

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United States - Mass. - Boston

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Electronic: Ambient Electronic: Soundscapes Moods: Type: Instrumental
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by Michael Matera

Atmospheric instrumental music - dreamy synth pop and swirling guitars create a unique soundscape.
Genre: Electronic: Ambient
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Uaso
3:41 $0.99
2. What You Deserve
3:21 $0.99
3. Giving It All Away
4:25 $0.99
4. Need
3:43 $0.99
5. Want What I Get
3:06 $0.99
6. Too Many Years
3:44 $0.99
7. Forget Tomorrow
3:30 $0.99
8. Broken Outside
3:39 $0.99
9. Let Go
3:03 $0.99
10. Wet
4:09 $0.99
11. Two
5:50 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
Michael Matera's inspiration for the CD "Two" came from the adoption of an orphan elephant named Uaso. "Two" has a unique sound with tribal drumbeats mixed with thick synth sounds and the occasional guitar, often not recognizable as a guitar at all. "Two" is Matera's second release for Neverwhere Records, he has been creating electronic music since 1995. Matera's first release, titled "M", was released in 1998 and received favorable reviews in the electronic music circles.



to write a review

Bill Binkelman of Wind and Wire

I know next to nothing about keyboard player/guitarist Matera, except what I
learned after listening to his second album, 2. What did I learn? This guy
is talented - he can play dynamic accessible electronic music with the best
in the business, and if there¹s any justice, this album is gonna be in a lot
of people¹s CD players someday.

Don¹t be fooled (as I was) by the apparent ³blue sky and clouds² cover art
of this album. Wrongo! Thirty seconds or so into the opening track, ³uaso,²
you¹ll be set straight in a hurry. Thundering drums (programmed but d**n,
they sound like a real trap set and hand drums), soaring whistling
keyboards, and dramatic piano all combine in a powerful song suffused with a
sense of celebration and life! Next up is ³what you deserve² which again
brings drums to the forefront (a blend of organic and electronic in nature),
along with darker shaded ebbing and flowing keyboards. This one has a
quasi-prog feel to it when the trap set erupts in pounding kick-bass,
cymbals, and tom toms, along with some stinging electric guitar work.
³giving it all away² has more of a tribal sound to it, owing to the
abundance of different sampled hand percussion, much of it ethnic, along
with great pan pipes that carry the wistful and a touch sad melody.

Through my many playings of 2, I was reminded of two artists whom I think
have influenced Matera (or at least Matera¹s music is similar to theirs):
Patrick O¹Hearn and Peter Maunu. Both of these artists¹ strengths are (or
were with regards to Munau) their abilities to craft accessible and melodic
music that never becomes stale, ordinary or commercial, yet retains
noticeable ³song-like² structure, as opposed to being just ambient in
nature. Matera has the same knack and it¹s in evidence throughout 2. This is
not new age music by a long shot, but it¹s not ambient either and it¹s not
really any brand of EM I know of. Rather than try to pigeon-hole it, I¹ll
just state that Michael Matera¹s music kicks ass and takes names!

Listen to the driving drums and whirly-gigging synths of ³need² or the fiery
³want what I get² featuring a blend of tribal rhythms, soaring synths, and
thumping electric bass. You¹ll hear an artist who is obviously passionate
about his music, which is plenty passionate to begin with! Some cuts are
brimming with an almost organized chaos, as a wall of sound seems to burst
from nowhere (such as on ³broken outside² with its cascading guitar licks
and chords and take-no-prisoners drumming). ³let go² sidesteps into catchy
electronica-like beats at the outset but morphs into something more along
the lines of the more dynamic cuts from O¹Hearn¹s Eldorado. Speaking of
Patrick O¹Hearn, ³wet² the second to last track, and the closing number,
³two,² could both sit alongside other songs on Metaphor or Trust. However,
that said, Matera¹s engineering skills are not as satisfying as O¹Hearn¹s. I
used an earlier comparison to Phil Spector¹s ³wall of sound² approach on
purpose. Matera would have been better served to separate the instruments
more from each other more in the mix. Some of the inherent drama on the CD
is overshadowed by a slight muddiness and indistinct sound as layer after
layer of music is built up in some songs.

On balance, though, this is a rock solid effort. O¹Hearn fans should be the
first to seek this one out, as should those who wish Munau had recorded more
than just Warm Sound in a Grey Field. However, don¹t come to this party
expecting much in the way of quiet music. As long as you¹re ready for a lot
of unleashed dynamism, you¹ll have a helluva good time.