CD REVIEW: Matthew Nimegeers- Mystery Man (Against the Tide)
by: Cyrus Rhodes
Label: East End Productions
Genre: Americana, Rock, R&B, Folk, Classic Cork,
Sounds Like: Van Morrison, John Cougar, Guns n’ Roses, Jon Bon Jovi, R.E.M.
Technical Grade: 8/10
Weakness: Winded Songs. Genre Identify Crisis
Matthew Nimegeers is a Canadian based singer/songwriter who just released his latest work entitled : “Mystery Man (Against the Tide ) (2013) Citing from his bio: In the vein of epic rock albums of the past, the blend of mystic rhythms with cutting edge guitar riffs is set off with original keyboard styling and orchestral accompaniment electrically charged throughout with top-notch musicianship. The exceptional and passionate songwriting of the old-school and varied instrumentation including saxophone, banjo and steel guitar this music touches off just the right mix of variety and experimentation.
The CD lifts off the ground nicely with Track 1, “Against the Ride” a heartfelt flowing rocking ballad that serves up impressive guitar-driven groove, meshed against impassioned vocals and invigorating yet soulful melody from Nimegeers. Track 2, epic “Coming Back for Me” shifts gears a bit with a steady flowing rhythm and well placed Americana-Folk-Organ ambience painted against a grand slam chorus and impressive finale making for an impressive follow-up statement. Track 3, “Daddy Long Legs’ is another impressive bluesy ballad that dishes out a rock steady R&B rhythm, and some well placed vocal harmonies that flows and ebbs its way through to motional fruition. The CD makes a strong first impression, dashing out 3 very solid songs in a row. The musicianship involved is above the bar. I would classify this music as classic Singer/Songwriter. Pop/Americana, with brief touches of Classic Rock and Psychedelic Rock of the 70’s and 80’s. Nimegeer’s music is reminiscent of classic Van Morrison, John Cougar, Guns n’ Roses, Jon Bon Jovi, R.E.M. Bruce Springsteen, The Cars, Collective Soul to Counting Crows. Along the way you will notice lush instrumentation with well placed solo guitar, Keyboard, Acoustic and Rhythm Guitar, slide guitar, saxophone. sporadic Organ and Piano, lush harmonies all built upon a ‘thick as a brick’ rhythm section. What I like the most about Nimegeers and his band, is how well they seem to groove together, testament to hundreds of hours of writing and rehearsal time no doubt. Now turning our attention over to Nimegeers. As for his vocal abilities - he’s a great advent for the Singer/Songwriter genre. His soulful voice goes down smooth and fills the space peacefully and unobtrusively with a timbre that is a bit rasp, reckless and infectious. I might add he takes some impressive vocal risks indicating to me a confident vocal ability. He commands an effective baritone, tonality and vibrato. All songs are extremely well crafted and consistent across the board - World Class Songwriting. All production aspects check out. This latest effort from Matthew Nimegeers delivers 10 solid tracks all providing musical enjoyment filled with strong musical variety and diversity. From hypnotic “Midnight Child” to heartfelt “To Be Loved” to melodic “Now that you’re Here” to thought provoking “The Bread” my personal favorite “On My Feet Again” this CD has something for just about everyone. The CD ends with Track 10 “The Love That’s Breaking Your Heart” the perfect finale statement for a CD like this.
All songs over 4 minutes tend to drag you across the finish line. Though adequate this mix is not the best I’ve heard and sounds a bit off kilter. The production lacks a modern day flair, marketability and dynamic. I don’t like how the vocal sit within the sonic space - a bit hot. CD suffers from a mild case of genera identity crisis, From The Cars to Guns and Roses it’s fair to say Nimegeers is all over the place. I would recommend Nimegeers narrow the fairway a bit with respect o his overall signature sound.
From start to finish, “Mystery Man (Against the Tide ) by Matthew Nimegeers is an impressive collection of music. The songwriting is gold standard – full of consistent musical experiences, each one possessing a unique personality, flair, and signature groove. Note for note, song for song, there isn’t really a weak piece in this entire catalog. The writing and playing abilities of Matthew Nimegeers and his band are rock solid. The melodies and harmonies are well crafted, and the lyrical content is packed to the hilt with good old-fashioned conventional wisdom. At the end of the day Matthew Nimegeers brings the mojo, and is clearly a marquee talent from Canada. One would be wise to keep a watchful eye on him over the years to come – north of the border.