Into the Flame, 2011
For someone that once belted out Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Music of the Night on Australian Idol, Matt Corby has certainly undergone something of a musical renaissance in recent years.
Into the Flame is Corby’s fourth EP, and it is a gutsy, layer cake of genres and ideas. Influences stick out like signposts (listen for the Jeff Buckley vocals on Untitled), but Corby doesn’t stay in one place long enough for him to be seriously compared to anyone.
He hops from the indie hit Brother- with it’s catchy yowling intro, growling vocals and thumping chorus- to the sauntering soul blues of Souls A’Fire . Jumping back into acoustic folk, his voice turns feathery as sings of a broken relationship on Untitled. Then, enlisting vocalist Bree Tranter, Big Eyes turns out to be the softest track on the album, airy harmonies floating above soft acoustic guitar.
Reaching number 3 on Triple J’s Hottest 100 of 2011 (after only being released a few weeks prior) Brother is the standout track, showcasing Corby’s talent for crafting a catchy hook. His voice at times sounds a little contrived as he attempts to capture the squeezed earnestness so hotly demanded of indie artists- but he overcomes that towards the end as he opens his lungs and lets loose with some throaty yells.
An impressive and diverse EP.