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The Daily Wildcat

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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    The Tallest Man on Earth’s new album ‘The Wild Hunt’ a nostalgic treat

    The Tallest Man on Earths new album The Wild Hunt a nostalgic treat

    Remember the good old days of mountain prospecting, sitting out in the countryside watching the stars and sipping moonshine from the warm still in your backyard? No? Don’t worry. The Tallest Man on Earth will take you back there — and, on Sept. 15, Tucson residents have a chance to see the Tall Man himself at Club Congress.

    The Tallest Man on Earth’s new album, The Wild Hunt, floods listeners’ ears with a sound that is straight out of another time. Swedish folk artist Kristian Matsson, now signed to Dead Oceans records, producers of folk crooners Bowerbirds as well as other well-known artists like Evangelicals and Dirty Projectors, has forged a sound that’s undeniably familiar. But this Bob Dylan sing-alike transcends its folk-rock roots.

    Matsson’s coarse, nasally voice can seem unbearably grating on first listen. Yet a keen listen to The Tallest Man on Earth reveals a musical world that has been long forgotten, awakened by Matsson for today’s listener. A completely deconstructed sound, consisting of only guitar, banjo, and for the first time on The Wild Hunt, piano, Matsson’s voice and his corresponding instrument carry an aesthetic which is extremely disarming.

    Guitar-picked, driving melodies like “”Troubles Will Be Gone”” and “”A Lion’s Heart”” remind listeners of just how intricate a well-plucked guitar song can be.  Matsson is not just a folk rocker but an adept musician as well.

    Beyond mere aesthetic enjoyment, The Wild Hunt is an ode to the spirit of the wandering man in pure folk form. Matsson proclaims, “”I left my heart to the wild hunt a-comin’ / I live until the call.”” Such freedom goes beyond a mentality, as tracks like “”King of Spain”” proclaim, a theoretical journey about self-reinvention, reveling in the idea of freedom. Matsson lives life as it comes: “”I drink my water when it rains / And live by chance among the lightning strikes.”” The Wild Hunt is a manifesto of living life day by day, with much appreciation of nature and wandering along the way.

    Matsson’s music isn’t for everyone, as its pure folkiness can scare the unprepared away. But for the folk-at-heart, The Tallest Man on Earth is a refreshing escape from the hyper-produced studio jams of the modern day. The Tallest Man on Earth is like a dark ale: it should be consumed slowly and deliberately to savor the taste.

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