Genre/Influences: Neo-folk, chanson, experimental.
Format: Digital, CD.
Background/Info: The lockdown because of Covid 19 is a rather prolific time for artists. Matt Howden is giving lockdown performances, releasing a series of “Lockdown Sieben”-albums plus a totally new work entitled “2020 Vision”. It’s Matt Howden’s very personal vision about what our world will be like although the vision became reality…
Content: Sieben remains a unique experience in sound. Matt Howden is still playing his violin in a very personal way. Sometimes delicate, but also rough and even enraged because he has a lot to express. This album is once again very engaged because of its lyrical content. Matt Howden has a very critical- and sometimes cynical view upon the world we’re living in. You feel some anger and rage, which has been transposed in the composition. He got the help of a few guests (mainly singers) to achieve his “2020 Vision”. Sometimes ghost-like, often deeply melancholic, the work also moves towards dreamy passages. Sieben once again reveals impressive writing skills.
+ + + : This album has it all: sadness, melancholia, evasion, drama… The songs aren’t always easy to catch and that’s because of the particular and singular style of Sieben. This artist can’t be linked with established music genres, but brings different influences together. He experiments with his violin, creating atmospheric noises, but still a kind of industrial scratches. But the magic and authenticity of the violin playing also resulted in a few more ‘classical’ songs, which are simply beautiful. “Shirt Of The Apocalypse” is one of these little, artistic pearls from the album. But I also have to mention “You, My Cult Of Blight” And “Come And Ride In The Cult Of Light”. The violin remains the essence of Sieben’s creation, but there also is a real harmony with rhythmic and synths.
– – – : I can’t say that the first songs of the album are hesitant, but it’s just that the most artistic and accomplished cuts are in the midst- and the end of the work.
Conclusion: Sieben’s new work in a way made us forget the terrible tragedy we’re going through this year and that’s rather funny as his work is a severe perception of this situation.
Best songs: “Shirt Of The Apocalypse”, My Cult Of Blight”, “Come And Ride In The Cult Of Light”, “Berylsinperil”, “Enzosonbenzos”.