Fri, Oct 18, 2013.
Matthew Good just released a new album, Arrows Of Desire, and began a Good, old-fashioned national tour to promote it this week. He's doing it the way it's supposed to be done, from the East Coast to the West, and has already played a couple of dates in the province, in Saint John and Moncton, with Fredericton to come Saturday night. The vet's been at it now close to 20 years, still delivering intense rockers and moody, punchy ballads, always with his interesting lyrics, stories that draw you in, driving rhythms that keep you moving.
Good's moved with the times, and morphed along with the new models of the music biz. He's in full touch with his fan base, thanks to a friendly website that offers lots of incentives to follow along, and hit the shows, from VIP ticket packages to lots of links to interviews, performances and streaming events for the new disc. Of special note is the Live Road page, which is making concert recordings available just a couple of days after recording. These are untouched and unedited cuts, warts and all, not the overdubbed or autotune-corrected live cuts that have been the industry standard. But they're fine sound too, not bootleg or YouTube quality. For instance, you can already check out the song from the new album Letters In Wartime, in a version recorded in Moncton at Casino New Brunswick on Wednesday night.
Another feature on the site is a list of complete set lists for the tour, another fan-friendly touch that gives you a lot of info about the show if you're curious. First off, it's great to see that the set list changes dramatically each night. Good decided to do that after the first show, said he would in his daily Rubbish blog post, and has kept it up. I love that he's bravely putting the new album out there, not hiding behind a greatest hits set. Moncton got a full nine of the ten album tracks for that show, Saint John had eight. You will find a few favourites scattered around, such as Weapon, Apparitions and While We Were Hunting Rabbits, but Hello Time Bomb hasn't made an appearance, for instance. I'm always for an artist who hits me with the new stuff.
Arrows Of Desire has the goods anyway. Guns Of Caroline stands out, an epic slower number with beautiful harmonies in the chorus. The opening title cut gets things moving right away with ringing guitar, and a full, passionate Good vocal, which builds into a strong rocker. It's the stuff that I'm sure will translate live, and you could do yourself a favour my getting to the Boyce Market Saturday, Oct. 18 for the Matthew Good show.
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Bob Mersereau has been covering music, and the East Coast Music Scene since 1985 for CBC. He's a veteran scene-maker at the ECMA's, knows where the best shows and right parties are happening, and more importantly, has survived to tell the tales. His weekly East Coast music column is heard on Shift on Radio 1 in New Brunswick each Wednesday at 4'45. He's also the author of two national best-selling books, The Top 100 Canadian Albums (2007) and The Top 100 Canadian Singles (2010).