Sussex songwriter Matt Mitchell is embarking upon an exciting, long-awaited solo project, which sees him joined by his band The Coldhearts.
It’s safe to say that Matt has had a colourful career playing with an array of bands, including fronting up Pride in the mid-2000s then touring Europe with Furyon, before launching his solo career this year.
On that, he tells us: “Well it’s helped me know what to expect and realise the levels of work it requires to even launch something, let alone it being a new project.
“It was a hard decision to do something under my own name or ‘solo’ so to speak as I always saw myself as a band guy, and still do really. Hence the Coldhearts part. I was never going to not do anything as it’s just not me to do that really. I’d always had songs aside from everything else I was promoting at the time.
“The last band project Colour Of Noise had decided to stop and was pretty much out of my control, whilst the other (Furyon) was and still is on ice. Perhaps a lot of ice but it’s still alive under there somewhere I feel. Some bands are just extremely difficult to move around, let alone get the time to write, demo and rehearse – especially when they all live in different countries like Furyon.”
Matt launched his debut single Black Diamonds in January, which gives us plenty of reason to be excited about what’s coming our way with a debut album due for release later this year.
You’re instantly hooked as a delicious riff opens up, then cool bursts of noise as drums kick in under the riff. The verse gradually builds in intensity with bursts of stabbing violins then organs, before diving into an energetic chorus.
A cheeky little guitar lick kicks in as we launch into a second chorus, with the opening riff blasting away over bursts of organ noise, then ending with more guitar flurries. It drops into spoken vocals “Twinkle twinkle twisted star, Playing games with brittle hearts, Radiating from the dark, Two black diamonds torn apart” then a more intense repeat of the lyrics feeds into a big solo. It’s an impressive introduction to Matt’s solo music, and you can check it out in the video below:
On the track, Matt tells us: “The reception has been incredible, better than expected even with lots of radio play. It’s a guitar-led rock tune featuring Hammond Organ, moody verses and a chorus that is made to stick in your mind. The song has a few twists and turns with a breakdown and solo section that takes it up another gear.”
Matt’s musical influences are, perhaps unsurprisingly, predominantly the great guitar bands of the 70s and beyond. As he tells us: “As a very young kid, I was influenced by the music my dad played like Led Zeppelin and The Moody Blues.
“Then I found my own music, which of course was more of what was on offer to us, but sounds that bands like Duran Duran and Ultravox were making appealed to me until I was an early teen and found the likes of Def Leppard and Bon Jovi. From there on it morphed as the rock music offered more and more like Alice In Chains and Soundgarden. I always ventured back to the older sounds and I loved the more bluesy sounds of Free, Bad Company, Rod Stewart etc…”
And on what inspires his music, Matt is keen to tell us it’s nothing too profound. As he explains: “I’d like to sound way more prolific here but really what inspires me, and always has, is people. Life’s ups and downs, fights and victories and the world around us.”
Expect to hear plenty more from Matt through 2019, with a second single out next Friday (5 April) and the album to follow later in the year. While they’ll also be playing shows and festivals, including Ramblin Man Fair.
As Matt adds: “It’s an honest record. The songs are put together with meaning and it’s not been styled to fit in a box with the right scene or anything. I hope it resonates with people. I’m really happy to be putting new music out. Come see it live when we’re at a venue nearby.”