t was hyped for a long while. Teased with the early release of the first single, Weapon, on MuchMusic's Big Shiny Tunes 17845. And then it came.
Reviews were good from what I read.
Granted, I am a huge fan of Matt Good's music. And like most of the dearly departed Matthew Good Band's other music, I was eagerly anticipating this Avalanche. And it's good. I'll give the album that.
The problem stems with the fact that from the end of Beautiful Midnight, through The Audio of Being and now onto Avalanche, Matthew Good doesn't seem to have grown much musically. He's using the same chords in almost the same progression in almost the same ways as he had on those other two albums.
There are some stand-alone tracks on this album for sure. The first song, Pledge of Allegiance, works wonderfully. It combines all the elements that make a good Matt Good song good, plus it adds in some nice church bells that add a lot to the overall song in terms of new melody.
The much-played song Weapon is another great song.
For me, there are two big songs on this album. One is the title-track. Avalanche stands completely alone for me. No other song can touch this one. It's haunting and beautiful. From the beginning, where Matt sings "One foot in front of the other" over and over, until he belts out the chorus, this song deserves to be a single. It will never be one for the simple fact that people don't like to hear too much repetition on their radios or televisions.
The other is 21st Century Living which is basically Matt ranting his thoughts on world politics, famine, Third-world debt, and our infatuation with consumerism and fast food while music plays in the background.
One good element that hasn't changed for me is Matt's ability to write great songs. While some elements of the music have remained the same, he's constantly able to throw new thoughts and ideas around those notes. With this album, Matt Good borders on something much bigger than the Matt Good Band would ever be. He doesn't top it; he just sets himself up to blow us out of the water with his next album. Hopefully.
Avalanche is good. It's not his best work. For me, Beautiful Midnight still stands as his best to date. But as a fan, it's good to have and it's good to listen to and even the packaging is pretty cool.
If you're not a fan, you might want to pass on this one and wait for his next album.