Matt Lowen’s “Last Year’s Leaves” is an acoustic blend of zen, bluegrass, and americana—it’s the music you hear in the autumn wind as the leaves turn colour; it’s the music the moon makes as it scrapes against the edges of the summer sky; it’s the music of change, of transition, of life as we live it.
A poignant work of lyric & melody, this ephemeral album overflows with an abundance of image & song as it explores the cyclical nature of growth & decay, love & loss, and life & death.
Recorded over the summer of 2014 with Rick Genge at Spiderlodge studio, Last Year’s Leaves “ripened and fell from the vine” with a creative ease in the warm July nights. Each session lasting through two (or sometimes three) bottles of red wine, Matt & Rick worked to emphasize the organic spirit of the music with acoustic instruments and chose to abandon percussion, enabling the songs’ structures and melodies to carry the listener along.
With Rick and his wife, vocalist Lori Paul, providing background vocals, creative conversations, and more than a few good meals, the backdrop was set at the quaint and comfortable home studio nestled deep in the heart of the Fraser river valley. From the hummingbirds buzzing over our heads in the afternoons, to the dogs curled up beneath our feet in the evenings, to the moon shining in through the window as it rose over Mt. Cheam, the record began to reflect the natural setting it was born out of.
A chance trip out of Idaho brought musicians Renee & Jason Homey to Spiderlodge to lay down the fiddle on “Never Goodbye.” With the addition of the fiddle, Rick’s masterful Guitar, Dobro, & Bass playing along with Matt’s work on Piano, Mandolin, Banjo, Harmonica, & Guitar combine to evoke a unique sense of timelessness. There is an old-world spirit that dwells within the music which feels ancient but sounds crisp, clear and contemporary. As dust brushed from an antique clock reveals the brilliant patina beneath it, so Last Year’s Leaves shines like an old soul with a new body.