By Keith Sharp
At a time when songwriters are collecting just pennies per song via the likes of Apple and Spotify, significant radio airplay is a distant memory and record companies can’t justify handing out gold and platinum records to signify significant sales, the likes of Matthew Good continue to be creative.
With the release of his latest recording, `Something Like A Storm’ Good has unleashed 10 tracks reflecting a stream of consciousness which far surpass your usual lyrical composition. This Vancouver native paints aural pictures with a style crafted over 20 years of continuous song writing. Just check out the lyrical form of tracks like the record title, “Decades”, “There For The First Time” or “Bullets In A Briefcase” and you have to marvel at the way he spins the English language into poetic imagery.
Especially at a time when current music demands cater more towards pre-fabricated soundbites, the likes of Matthew Good and his ilk continue to strive towards meaningful lyrical content, even if at times he may feel he is doing it for his own vanity.
“I have no choice, I am an artist, this is what I do,” he explains over the phone as he plugs his new release prior to launching a national tour with Our Lady Peace. “If I couldn’t do this, what would I do, work at a gas station, matter of fact, I’ve already done that,” he laughs.
“I gave up getting played on radio a long time ago but I have established a fan base and it’s my fans who support my music,” Good continues. “Making new music gives me an excuse to go touring and I have spent the past 25 years solidifying this fan base.”
Things haven’t always been easy for Good. He’s fought mental depression and a number of other physical setbacks but even when he admitted himself into a mental institution to battle his problems, Good has still created a litany of creative prose.
Having made is mark as The Matthew Good Band in 1995 with their debut `All Of The Good Astronauts’ which led to his 1999 Beautiful Midnight released which garnered Juno Awards for Best Group and Rock Album Of The Year.
After four group albums, Good has moved on to create a total of 12 solo records and although he has battled bouts of manic depression and a bipolar disorder which was diagnosed in 2007, Good has maintained an impressive level of creativity.
With the release of his 2015 `Chaotic Neutral’ release, Good announced he had successfully battled against the Altivan addiction which had plagued his mental problems and was in great shape both physically and mentally.
Following extensive touring which put Good back in the spotlight, he has joined forces again with ace producer Warne Liversey (Midnight Oil, Deacon Blue) to produce another stimulating opus which focuses on personal reflections including political overtones, given what is currently going on in the world, and the inevitable digs – especially at current U.S president Donald Trump.
“I touched on it in a song “Bad Guys Win” but writing about him is a bit of a dry well,” Good allowed. “This guy is like one of those street performers you find with cymbals tied up so he can clap his knees together. It’s like lowering yourself into muck, you have to deal with being In the muck, it’s not an intelligent conversation! Within the context of the United States, Trump’s presidency will not be irreparable. He’ll be a one-term president – if he lasts that long!”
“The gist of Something Like A Storm is about divisionism,” Good explained. “As a musician, you travel all over North America and around the world and your exposure to different trends becomes very apparent and this input has a major influence on me.
In recording the new album with Liversey, Good explained that he tried a bunch of things differently. “This album was basically recorded live off the floor,” he explained. “We doubled down on the drums instead of using a computer. Warne had a lot of tricks up his sleeve, it worked out really well.”
With a major tour set to go with Our Lady Peace, Good feels there is a great synergy between both bands and looks forward to appearing with the newly-revamped OLP. “Raine Maida (OLP lead vocalist) and I get along like a house on fire,” effused Good. “We are the kind of guys who can sit in a room for like 12 hours and just talk. I am looking forward to getting up with them at the end of the show, I am sure we’ll work something out together.”
For further tour information please link to www.matthewgood.org.