Volume 95, Issue 47

Friday, November 23, 2001
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Tallman: a virtual success

Disc of the Week

Spageddy Eddy's knows pasta

Shits and Giggles

Kravitz wears no ice on his wrists

More like "Matthew Bad Band"

More like "Matthew Bad Band"

Matthew Good Band

The Audio of Being


Three stars (out of five)

The Matthew Good Band's fourth official album is – no pun intended – not especially good, but not especially bad either.

That, in a nutshell, is the biggest problem with The Audio of Being – for each of the record's strengths, there is also a weakness.

Lead singer/songwriter Matthew Good has always been known for his charged lyrics and, in a way, Good's vocals have never been stronger.

On tracks like "I, the Throw Away," where he sings "Picking up the pieces of another fucked-up reason or selling off some freedom that was never free," you can almost see the spittle flying from his mouth.

What the Matthew Good Band provide in emotion, Matt Good lacks in vocal skill. His habit of combining spoken words, whispers and actual singing becomes repetitive after only a few songs.

While Good's far-leftist views can lead to some interesting lyrics, he occasionally crosses the line and becomes overbearing and pretentious. Afterall, it is Matt Good.

The band's trademark hard-rock sound is carried by heavy guitar riffs and

Most of the good songs on Audio appear on the album's second half. Tracks such as "Anti-Pop," "The Rat Who Would Be King" and "Under the Influence" mirror the strength of the album's first single, "Carmelina."

"Advertising on Police Cars" is a ballad in the style of past MGB hits like "Apparitions" and "Strange Days." Unfortunately, what the record lacks is one or two really outstanding songs to push it over the top.

Audio was recorded in late 2000 and, despite almost a year of production, rumour has it that Good himself is unhappy with the finished product. Given the record's lack of focus, it sounds like an album released in a compromised state that likely left neither the band nor the record company satisfied.

Aside from hardcore MGB fans, Audio will likely leave listeners feeling just as disappinted as Good himself.

–Mark Polishuk

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Copyright The Gazette 2001