Matt Kivel, “Insignificance”

Jayson Greene

By Jayson Greene

on 05.13.14 in Listen to This

Matt Kivel’s excellent 2013 debut Double Exposure quietly spellbound the few who caught it. Kivel’s high voice dissipated off the music’s pearly surface, which was often just his finger-picked acoustic guitar. It was a whispered record, and on his upcoming Days of Being Wild, on Woodsist, he’s graduated to a murmur. The chugging riff that forms the spine of “Insignificance,” the album’s first single, is quiet and insistent, more blurry shape than riff, and Kivel’s singing has ripened a bit, emerging ever so slightly into the foreground. You still can’t make out most of his words, but the tone and feel of his singing stir unnameable feelings. The mood is closer to early R.E.M. than to Nick Drake, and signals a turn into warmer, fuller territory.