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Matt Reid and Friends 

Letters (indie)

Long-time Halifax scene-guy Matt Reid assembles friends and family for a delightful collection of piano-pop tunes. Perhaps those closest to Reid know the inspirations for these songs---imaginary or not---but regardless, it's fun to speculate whether his words address real Halifax people and situations. The lyrics for each of these 12 tracks reads like a direct correspondence or a compelling diary entry, like a slightly lighter-hearted version of Ben Folds' The Unauthorized Biography of Reinhold Messner.

Things kick off dramatically with "Well, F"---almost a slow tango with the keyboard, which demands, "I see no justice in a world that shits on such a decent guy." "Finger on the Pulse" goes for the jugular of the Saturday night dance crowds with "handbill in my left, staple gun in the right." Reid sneaks in a jab to those who spend time on local message boards on "Cheap Shots at Easy Targets," before changing the tune to the lovely old-timey "Belle," perhaps a sweet, romantic ode to a deceased grandmother.

Reid makes good use of his pals' talents (his band includes Dean Gallant, Kristina Parlee and Luke Goguen, plus a ton of guests), including better half Rochelle Goguen (Stolen Minks), who closes the show, singing sultry lead on "Reason," and demonstrating a kinship with Carolyn Mark not heard before. Sue Carter Flinn

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Vol 25, No 21
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