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M. Ward

Another musician I'm championing lately is M. Ward (known to his family and friends as Matt Ward; not sure why the abbreviation exists). His stuff is fascinating; listening to the delicate songs "Bad Dreams," "So Much Water" and "Carolina" and hearing his cracked whisper of a voice, you'd swear he was an 80-year-old codger from the Appalachians, but he's actually a young guy (late 20s, I'd guess). His guitar work, especially the acoustic, is gorgeous, and his lyrics are spare but evocative ("I used to feel like California with baby’s eyes so blue; now I feel like Carolina, I split myself in two"). I've been thoroughly enjoying his second record, End of Amnesia, on Future Farmer Recordings, during the last several months. Definitely a keeper.

Authorized MP3s are available at Epitonic.com, from Howe Gelb's Ow Om label (scroll to the bottom; "Beautiful Car" is particularly lovely) and at his current label, Merge Records. And once you've had your fill of those, check out this live recording of a Netherlands club appearance from 2000 (click on the second photo on the left for a nice 20 minute clip; near the end is an invigorating cover of Yo La Tengo's "Saturday").

Thoroughly wonderful stuff.

October 8, 2003 in Music | Permalink