Matt Woosey – Desiderata (Rating 4 out of 5)

mattwooseyA years in the making and should-be overnight sensation after the release of Desiderata, his eighth album, U.K. based Folk Blues guitarist Matt Woosey seems ready to take both sides of the pond by storm.

Pastoral enough to be soothing, but not sleep inducing, this is a wonderfully diverse listen that floats around in the ether between a more exciting John Martyn, a less depressing Elliot Smith and Father John Misty. The guitar work is dazzling with “Who Do You Love” as a sterling example, and the lyrics are moving, thoughtful, and introspective with “Always Be the One” as a standout.

Sometimes, my glass is half empty, sometimes, my glass is half full/Sometimes, I fill it right to the top, sometimes I don’t drink at all/ Sometimes I like to be on the road my friends, sometimes I like to be at home/I always carry your kiss on my lips, so I never feel alone/ Sometimes I  crave silence sometimes I crave Rock and Roll/Sometimes I feel like a wise man, sometimes I feel just like a fool/ And you will always, you will always, you will always be the one/Always be the one.

The best thing about this album is the way it seems to be almost ageless. “Mystified” could have been a Fairport Convention Song, and “Lighthouse” with its early era Van Morrison vibe, could be a song played by a hipster shoegaze band at the Austin South by Southwest music festival.  “Lovin’ Me Ain’t Easy” is a dynamic piano based favorite where Woosey brings the vocals to the front, and is perfect album closer, while “You and Me” seems to mine the same territory as Dawes and The Avett Brothers.

There is no bad egg in this hen-house. At 8 songs in length, it is a perfect afternoon or early evening listen.  And now, after reading that his influences are Rory Gallagher, Tim Buckley and Roy Buchanan among others, it seems like this might be a good time to enter the way back machine and explore his back catalog.

God Speed.