Now, three years after his debut, Matthew E. White is back with Fresh Love, and touring the US and UK in support. For the very last stop on the tour, he’ll play at Shoreditch’s Village Underground, the venue of choice for some of the world’s most eclectic musicians. Book fast – a one-off visit to St. Lukes in March has already sold out.
Resident in Richmond, Virginia, White stands as the founder of Spacebomb, a collective of local musicians devoted to creating a specifically vintage sound. Perhaps because of this background, he functions something like an old-fashioned bandleader, developing his music alongside a coterie of trusted and experienced collaborators. Across Big Inner, White’s soul-inspired vocals are backed with the momentum of country rock, the rhythms of funk and the euphoria of gospel.
‘Will You Love Me,’ for instance, begins as a sparse, hymnal mantra, adorned only by a drumbeat, before the arrival of horns, strings, piano, guitars and a backing choir transforms it into a graceful torch song. In the hands of a lesser arranger, it could so easily collapse into big band bluster, but White blesses everything with a restraint. On ‘Big Love’, his vocals are almost whispered, gliding impressionistically above the band’s forceful pulse, while the crisp, minimal ‘Human Style’ has the percussion of classic hip-hop. Listening to White on record can feel like being drawn into a community of sound; live, the effect will hopefully be magnified.
|What||Matthew E. White, Village Underground|
|Where||Village Underground, 54 Holywell Ln, EC2A 3PQ | MAP|
|Nearest tube||Old Street (underground)|
On 20 Apr 15, 7:30 PM – 11:00 PM
|Website||Click here to book via the Village Underground website|