EP Review: Rivalry by Matthew Gordon Price
by Danni Gillespie

Alt-folk musician Matthew Gordon Price’s new release Rivalry is a stunningly intimate venture that is full of sentiment; he presents an emotional narrative to which many will relate to with beautiful melodies and an honest tone. Opening with ‘Sweet as Stone’, an emotionally rich introduction to the EP. We are taken on a bitter-sweet journey of disparate love – “You never missed me […] but I miss you” – that builds to an almost angry crescendo before settling into a sad acceptance.

Price’s candid lyrical content and smooth vocals are backed by beautiful guitar and instrumental accompaniment; reminiscent of Passenger, Mumford and Sons and Ben Howard’s later work. ‘Vixen Queen’ is a more upbeat tune; the music builds and then cuts back to raw guitar, before building again with an emotional vocal foreground. The anger and frustration in ‘Sweet as Stone’ is mirrored and expanded upon in this track – we feel the heartache and pure sadness in Price’s voice and become entranced by his story.

Rivalry begins with melodic guitar and gives a hint of Price’s instrumental talents. The track strikes a beautiful balance between guitar, harmonies and soulful strings. He tells life-stories; stories we can all relate to and the emotional tone of his voice, the harmonies and the instrumental music brings them home all that more. ‘Numb Overture’ starts with soft instrumentals, recalling the tranquil ebb and flow of the sea. This is a beautiful piece that lasts just one minute and 35 seconds; it’s a solely instrumental piece that will take your breath away.

"He tells life-stories; stories we can all relate to"

This beautiful EP concludes with ‘Numb’; this track incorporates all the components listeners will love from the rest of the EP – more beautiful instrumental, soulful vocals and emotive lyrical narrative. There are instrumental solos and choruses, clam, tranquil verses and true-to-life lyrics. A wonderful send-off for both new and old listeners. This EP is a staple for any indie folk collection. It incorporates the raw emotional oral tradition of folk music with contemporary indie instrumentals. What’s not to love? 

Rivalry is released 30 March 2018, 

Photo credit RWYSessions

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