Matt Mays is on a quest to find and create the music that he hears in his head. When he stays still the sound of it drifts farther away: “when the vibrations stop,” he says “it’s time to move on.” A few years back, Matt left wherever he was living at the time to embark on a journey into open space. To live in the midst of a world where anything could happen. A crusade into the sound, traversing the vast musical divide that he calls home. Mexico, California, Indonesia, Hawaii, Costa Rica, New York… wherever. He used surfing, yoga, and a ukulele as tools to bring him closer to the melodies and words in his head. Eventually, the sound was found. As soon as he stepped off the plane in Halifax he started work an album he called Coyote: a proper home for all his experiences. Imagery painted with song. Coyote covers the whole spectrum of the sound that Mays finally found. “I’ve always loved animals that are beautiful but dangerous,” Matt explains. “It’s a good analogy for life. Coyotes are native to Canada, Mexico and the United States and that’s where I lived while writing this album.”
Coyote is Matt’s fifth album since his self-titled debut. Released in late 2012, it has won three MusicNS awards, been named Album of the Year by the ECMA and won a JUNO for Rock Album of the Year.
Whether it’s a California stoned and hazy rock and roll song like ‘Indio’ or an alone at the microphone heartstring strummer like ‘Chase The Light’, you’ll feel it. You can tell Matt found what he was looking for. In every song you can hear a freedom in his voice, and if you listen closely enough can hear the sand from ten different beaches scratching on the fret board of his guitar. “I wanted to make songs that followed my outlook on life as honestly as possible and record them as honestly as possible. That’s it.”
The gods were on Matt’s side one day while working on Coyote. He was scheduled for a mixing session at one of New York’s most prestigious studios and the mix files didn’t show up. Panic mode. The studio engineer asked Matt if he had any songs to record to make use of the time. Luckily, the night before Matt stayed up all night and wrote ‘Take It On Faith’, which ended up being Coyote’s first single. “I had no musicians handy so I was forced to play everything myself except for the drums which were played by local monster Greg Wieczorek who happened to be one street over in Soho with his drums in his car. He nailed it, first take. The whole song was recorded in a few hours. It was one of those rare sessions where everything works out.” It’s fitting that fate was such an integral part of the birth of the song ‘Take It On Faith’.
Matt will bring this sound to your town and his band will play it loud. He will sing these songs with soul because every verse means the world to him. After all, he chased them down, in a journey around the world, and he has sacrificed everything to get to sing them for you.