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“An American South journey with the literate, finger-picking Scandinavian Sherpa.”
There’s No Leaving Now
(Dead Oceans Records)
Seven hundred and thirty days – that’s how long the folk world waited since Kristian Matsson gave his listeners The Wild Hunt; and we obsessed and shared its songs like it was our extraordinary opportunity to witness Bob Dylan before he went electric. The Scandinavian singer has provided, much in the same vein as his previous release, a compilation of varied tempos and cadences, bluesy instrumental forms, gallivanting finger-picking and the nectar of Matsson’s romancing lyrics.
“Leading Me Now” strides like his previous single, “King of Spain.” Refined to words and acoustic noodling, Matsson swoons “You give me the look of thorns, we get liars every night / But I get you somehow / Be the reins inside / ‘Cause you’re leading me now.”
Matsson is a wordsmith, fearless with literate playfulness, injecting sweet romance and paired with humor and vivid achiness. His signature tone backlit by timid instrumentation: occasional electric or lap steel guitar (“Bright Lanterns”) or murmuring piano (“There’s No Leaving Now”). There’s No Leaving Now is wall-to-wall singles, each a broad stroke with charismatic, poetic, rambling songwriting, which serves to center the album as a pinnacle for anyone targeted in the Wild Hunt sights.