Milwaukee Artist of the Week – 10/10/14 – Jay Matthes

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This week’s Milwaukee Artist of the Week is Jay Matthes, a country/Americana artist with an infectious sound. Without the help of publicists or management, Jay has managed to make a name for himself in Milwaukee’s country music circles, a scene that is relatively small, but also contains a lot of very talented artists. We received an advance copy of Matthes’ latest, “A Drier Place”, which will be released to the public on Saturday at Fire on Water. As someone who admittedly isn’t the biggest country fan in the world, I can honestly tell you that Matthes’ album won me over.

The biggest draw to this album is that it doesn’t contain any of the pop-like post production that many mainstream country albums incorporate these days. As a casual observer of country music, even I can tell you that radio-worthy country music has started to blend elements of pop and rock. This album strays from that, however, and just sticks to straight up country and Americana, and it’s actually a breath of fresh air for listeners of any type of music. Even though the technology is there to make any artist sound better, Matthes’ album is solid because he gets by on raw talent alone. Armed with a guitar, and a surrounding cast of talented musicians, “A Drier Place” makes draws back to a simpler time in country.

From straight up country tunes like “What Pretty Girls Do” to folk/Americana track “Who Found The Whiskey?”, this album is all-original. Completely analog, it’s no wonder as to why Matthes was nominated for best Acoustic Musician this past year. Make sure that you check out the album when it is available, either in person on Saturday, or when it becomes available for download shortly after.

In the meantime, you can check out Matthes’ previous release, “Apt. 201” here via his website.

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