Matt Owens sits in next to the Fireplace in DeBarra’s for a special acoustic session this thursday.
Matt is a British singer-songwriter and musician, who came to prominence as one of the founder members of indie-folk band Noah and the Whale, and for fronting Rock’n’Roll band Little Mammoths.
Under the pseudonym of Urby Whale, Matt recorded four albums with Noah and the Whale that have collectively sold over a million copies in the U.K, including two gold records and one platinum record.
Having toured the world constantly since 2006 (with both bands and solo) he’s played festivals such as Austin City Limits, Fuji Rock and Glastonbury, touring with bands such with Arcade Fire, Vampire Weekend and Broken Social Scene.
Little Mammoths debut E.P came out last year to critical acclaim, and was instantly championed by Texas Songwriting Legend Ray Wylie Hubbard, who wrote ” If your ears dig gnawing on the gritty sounds from a young, dirty, cool rock band, I just found Little Mammoths who satisfy the craving…”
After headlining two stages at Wilderness last year and a European tour with Bahamas, the band are set to release their debut album this summer.
Songs for an Empty Room
Songs for an Empty Room is Matt’s debut solo album.
On it, he’s joined by a talented five-piece acoustic band, comprising some of his cohorts from Noah and the Whale, Little Mammoths and folk troubadour Tom Figgins. The aim was to generate ‘a warm Sunday morning’ feel – roughed up with a bit of grit’ and sees Matt’s returning to many of his initial musical inspirations; Neil Young, Tom Waits and Warren Zevon.
Cut live in two days and with no overdubs, the rawness of the record reflects the tensions between two very different existences: the heady escapism of his life on the road, and the inescapable realities of a life back home.
Songs for an Empty Room is a highly individual glimpse into the beauty and dirt of lives seen at first hand, with narrators often compromised as they try to justify and reconcile the absence and guilt that accompanies the distractions of the ever-changing landscape of the road.
The album’s title echoes the original settings the songs found themselves in. These were conceived not with an audience or release in mind, but purely for the sake of the songs themselves – in hotel rooms, backstage dressing rooms and snatched moments in fleeting visits home.
The songs present the tensions and trials of a life lived at opposite ends of the same personal universe.