There gotta be something special in the water of Seattle, as so many supreme guitarists and charismatic musicians in general have come out from there (Jimi Hendrix, Pearl Jam, Metal Church to name a few) and now this new guitar player with a mysteriously titled debut-EP dedicated to the dearest people in his life.
The opener "The Mistress" is a headbanging song with a mesmerizing main riff, hieratic vocals, baroque solos, a Middle-Eastern feeling and a drum machine. Metalheads should pay special attention to this song when approaching Matthew Meadows for the first time or start from the following instrumental track, "Gravity", displaying the guitar shredding skill store he's in possession of.
More various and gifted with tribal obsessive percussions, "The Turk" is another instrumental composition, which owns crushing guitar sounds, yet still displays Malmsteenian influences.
Things change radically with "Falling", a bit Spanish-like in its acoustic guitar double fugue, with vocals again, and more fit for dancing or as a serenade to one's lover.
The last track, "Circles", is the last instrumental one and uses only guitar sounds, first reminding Led Zeppelin, and later darker and more somber ones; this track is ruined by the fact that it is interrupted suddenly before its natural end; I don't know if this is due to a serious mistake by the manufacturing company or a misunderstanding between the musician and the company, what's sure is it's a pity and leaves a bad taste in your mouth.
The 5 songs differ a lot from one another, explaining the one-man-band, singer, composer and instrumentalist wants to apply to a heterogenous audience including Rock and Metal fans, as well as people who don't listen to music so often and aren't going in search of a complicated record to face with.
The protagonist here is the guitar, because the vocals aren't always present, secondly because the bass is absent and thirdly owing to the simple and delicate drum beats set in the background.
I'd like to listen to further material from this artist, but next time with a full band, even if mere session-musicians, and at the same time I wish I could see "Etherati" reprinted with dignity. For the moment, we are dealing with a product which is catchy, cleverly arranged and played, which is particularly suited for night listens (and I am not adding any negative connotation to that).