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“The Angels Went Back To Heaven” by MattO

With a nice groove, a fat bass, and a lot of string luster to back him up in a familiar European tone, MattO gets right down to the business of making true blue rock music in his new single “The Angels Went Back To Heaven” this April, and it takes no longer than the first thirty seconds of the track to get a good handle on what his mission is all about here. MattO is one of many rock players on the outside of the United States border scoring a lot of time in the headlines this spring, but whether you’re new to his sound or not, I think that the integrity of his performance in this new single is going to be enough to bring a lot of favor his way from critics and fans the same.  

The first thing that grabbed me in this song was the lead vocal, which seems to slide right between the strings and nestles itself in a spot where it buffers the percussion and keeps all of the loose ends in the arrangement from sounding messy. There are a lot of intricacies mixed with unkempt, downhome grooving in “The Angels Went Back To Heaven,” but it somehow never sounds like we’re listening to a songwriter trying to live in two different aesthetical worlds at the same time. He’s still very centered in his delivery, and crashing in on the stereotypical melodic themes we hear in modern rock music with crushingly emotional, pop-influenced cues I want to hear even more of in the future.  

A single like this one can be as defined by its production quality as it is the actual substance of the material, and something in my gut tells me that MattO was thinking about this when he sat down to iron out the final mastering for “The Angels Went Back To Heaven” recently. There’s a balance between the polish on the mix and the rough-and-tumble attitude of the music that I can’t get over no matter how many times I go back through the track, reminding me a lot of another era in alternative rock without a doubt; an era whose music is on the opposite end of the spectrum from modern European rock music in every way, shape, and form. The passion is the same, as is the potential to sound iconic a generation after its initial release due to criminal oversight on the part of the media.  

There is a lot of new talent coming up in rock music regardless of what scene or even what corner of the world you’re looking in right now, but if there’s only one singer that you should make a point to check out before April has hit its expiration date, I would have to put MattO’s name right at the top of the list. He’s rock in all the ways that count for something and inspired by rock and pop enough to know how to stay tough and tempered in his approach, and “The Angels Went Back To Heaven” confirms his place as an up-and-comer you need to be following.  

Mindy McCall



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