The Tallest Man on Earth

The Tallest Man on Earth, 'There's No Leaving Now' (Courtesy of the Artist / June 5, 2012)

Swedish singer/songwriter and guitar player Kristian Matsson, who performs under the name of The Tallest Man on Earth, has always brought a young, more sweet-voiced, tuneful, tender and deft guitar-picking version of Bob Dylan to mind. On his new album, you could say Matsson is following the path already trod by the Bard, branching out from acoustic guitar, adding drums, piano, pedal steel and a fuller sonic scope. Despite the expanded instrumentation, the sound and mood of The Tallest Man on Earth hasn't changed drastically since coming to most people's attention with 2010's haunting The Wild Hunt. Matsson has a slightly pinched voice that still has lots of color and depth. There's a chill Scandinavian depressiveness that looms over his slow and brooding songs. To my ear Matsson offers a nicely flinty and emotionally rawer version of what more popular singers like Coldplay's Chris Martin and Dave Matthews turn into saccharine smarm. Like Vampire Weekend, this is contemporary indie music that mellowing Gen X-ers, nostalgic boomers and of-the-moment Gen Y hipsters can all possibly enjoy at a low-key summer party.

The Tallest Man on Earth
There's No Leaving Now

(Dead Oceans)

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