Matthew Moon

I Thought U Should Know

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    8
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The second album from this Colorado-based musician has similar leanings to Evan & Jaron as well as traces of the Calling on the opening "It's Alright." The track has a solid pop/rock rhythm that leads into a better-than-anticipated chorus. Matthew Moon appears quite content in the roots pop/rock category, especially the slow-building "Somehow." Resembling the Gin Blossoms during a slower rock ballad, the number takes shapes during the second and third chorus. Jeremy Lawton's piano playing is another key component here. Unfortunately, Moon goes down a path in the third song he can barely escape. "Like a Fire" has all the feeling of a Richard Marx song, but improves marginally as it evolves. It's almost adult contemporary to a fault. A surprising experiment is the reggae pop on "Like a Fire"; its laid-back feeling perfectly meshes with Moon's easy delivery. The sweet harmonies and subtle rock texture on "Love & Devotion" have the same tempo and feeling as Tom Petty circa Into the Great Wide Open, even down to the guitar solo. Moon can also pull out a stool and acoustic guitar without hesitation, especially on "Drive Me Home" with a rolling guitar riff. Over-produced and almost pandering to radio is the stale-sounding "I Would Give Anything." Although its arrangement has a lot of groove in it, it's a song that could have a harder, edgier tinge to it. "Not That Bad" seems an apt title for a song that has a mid-tempo country-pop feeling to it, although it veers into a contemporary pop bridge. By far the standout song is "Love Disaster," a track that is equal parts Gin Blossoms as it is Hootie & the Blowfish. A false ending leads into perhaps the album's crowning achievement, mixing the acoustic pop with a singalong rock feeling and handclaps. Although not without flaws, the album is definitely a consistently good and repeatable listen.

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