Name Your Price Download //
It'd be rather easy to write off Matthew William Charles as a member of the folk punk community. On a press release, I imagine the bottom line would say something like "RIYL: Sledding With Tigers / Slade and the Big Nothing / AJJ" and while that might be enough to sum it up for some people, it's not enough for me. People can enjoy music simply based upon the genre and the idea of "This sounds like something else I like so naturally I like it". But the other thing is that the music of Matthew Williams Charles is so much more than just folk punk, even though that is how it could be on the surface and first listen.
Through the rattles of acoustic guitars, blares of the harmonica and vocals that are just as fast paced come electric guitars and other instruments in the background which take this music one step beyond folk punk. If you've ever heard a punk band who has had a number of albums before, you will often find that said punk band will have that token "acoustic song", which I could name names but what's the point? MWC sounds less like those token acoustic songs and more like what would happen if a band from Epitaph or Fat Wreck Chords decided to use more acoustic guitars than electric.
Furthermore, I really enjoy the lyrics of Matthew William Charles. The first song is called "Age" and really touches on a subject I've always wondered about. When you work in animal rescue (or if you've ever adopted a cat or dog), sometimes the exact birth date of a cat or dog might not be known and someone (usually a veternarian) just estimates it. I've also heard this saying "You're only as old as you feel" which is intended to mean that if you're 45 you could feel 25 and that's good thing but I always think of it as being more of me feeling a lot older than I am.
I'm not sure how much of the music on "Heads Up" is inspired by the Bouncing Souls or how much I even hear of that band in this music, but the funny thing is I have a line from one of their songs stuck in my head after listening to this album so many times: "I learned some things about the places I saw / I learned some things about myself". Any time music can teach you something- especially something about yourself- well, that my friends is a debt which cannot be repaid but I will forever try.