George Harrison new where every part was supposed to go on a song, because he was an incredibly talented songwriter. Where the hook comes in, how the piano should sound and how hard the drums should hit all came across as close to perfect as you’d hear when he was still releasing music. This is being brought up because on his new solo album Light’n Up, Matthew Logan Vasquez does the exact same thing, reminding us in more ways than one of Harrison’s talents and his mark on the music world. The key to any great album is the quality of the songs, and here Logan Vasquez has a lot of quality to work with.
If you just heard the opener on this album “Ballad in My Bed” you’d miss so much more of how intricately beautiful the rest of the album is. While the opener has plenty of soft and pretty tones, it doesn’t prepare you for the hook filled pacing of “Trailer Park.” The “heartland pop” of the song offers such a snappy speed and a rocking sound, that it could become the anthem for the workin’ folk of the south. However what sets it apart from the blue collar rock of other acts is that it contains orchestral parts that take the song to a whole new place.
The rest of the record plays out in a similar fashion. The way that “Vacation” opens doesn’t sound bad, in fact it’s wonderful; but the song comes across in a different way than how it begins. “Ball Pit” has an almost SGT. Pepper’s feel though it’s more inspiration than any lifting. The album also has slower songs to round things out. The way that “I Love My Boy” feels so sincere, how “Poor Kids” touches on so many emotions, or even how those orchestral sides come through on “Oslo,” where Logan Vasquez has some of the best and most tender notes of his career. Of course for us, the standout of the album was easily “Ghostwriters” where Logan Vasquez seems to excise demons of the industry while giving listeners a catchy track that goes deeper than just surface level. Matthew Logan Vasquez has released the album that places him on his own plane, away from being the co-founder of Delta Spirit and further as a solo artist that can write better than many of his contemporaries.
You can stream Light’n Up on all streaming sites, you can purchase it in all digital store fronts, or you can pick it up on vinyl directly from Dine Alone Records. Matthew Logan Vasquez will be on tour beginning March 13 in Dripping Springs, TX at Revival until July 05 at Historic Scoot Inn in Austin, TX. A complete list of his tour dates can be found here.
Image Credits: Photo Courtesy of Paradigm.