Christian Review Magazine Issue 3 - March 2015 - Page 52

MUSIC REVIEW Mat’s music has been featured in many television shows and movies M Artist: MAT KEARNEY Album: at Kearney is a pop-rock/CCM artist with a defining halfspoken, half-sung vocal style, and a penchant for crafting great tunes mixed with relevant, relatable, and at times, whimsical lyrics. With four years between this release and his last (Young Love [2011]), JUST KIDS is Kearney’s fifth studio album. JUST KIDS Rating: Genre: Pop, Singer Songwriter, Rock For Fans Of: Jack Johnson, Coldplay Label: Republic Records Reviewed by: Leah St John Release Date: Out Now 52 > CHRISTIAN REVIEW MAGAZINE A fairly unique artist, Mat Kearney has always seemed to exist in a place that lies somewhere between singer-songwriter and pop. And he continues this tradition with JUST KIDS, an album that contains a variety of songs, some which lean more towards singer-songwriter sensibilities, whilst others which exhibit more of a poporiented vibe. JUST KIDS opens with “Heartbreak Dreamer”, a brilliantly composed track that closes with a spoken-word rendition of part of Anis Mojgani’s poem “Shake The Dust,” a beautiful piece of writing which serves as encouragement for the overlooked, the underdogs, and the outcasts. And as JUST KIDS progresses, it follows in the footsteps of this track, pairing great music with poignant, meaningful, and reflective lyrics. In fact, this album is pretty intimate in nature, with Kearney singing about and reflecting on certain aspects of his personal history. One of my favorite tracks on JUST KIDS is “Los Angeles”, on which he sings about the early days of his music career. A collection of noteworthy tunes, JUST KIDS deftly combines an upbeat pop ambiance with singer-songwriter sensibilities, and other genres - including folk, hip-hop, and even 80’s pop. As well, a variety of musical elements making appearances throughout. Needless to say, JUST KIDS is a pretty creative album, and I would expect nothing else from Mat Kearney, who always manages to maintain an edge of originality within his music. With JUST KIDS, Mat Kearney has crafted a great album which makes for an enjoyable listen. It’s also great to see (and hear) how he audibly continues to mature and grow in his musical abilities and talents.