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Album Review

Red Matter – ‘Northbound Train’ [Album Review]

Akin to a musical chameleon on #NorthboundTrain (Mighty Quinn Records), Red Matter merges tangs of everything from Americana to gospel-laced soul.



Red Matter ‘Northbound Train’ album artwork

Genre-blending jam band Red Matter recently dropped their album, Northbound Train, fusing elements of rock n’ roll, blues, Americana, and psychedelia.

Red Matter’s sound reflects the influences of Gov’t Mule, Dawes, Goose, and Tedeschi Trucks Band, along with stimuli from OGs such as Grateful Dead, Phish, Jefferson Airplane, and Santana.

Red Matter comprises Milo Barer (lead vocals), Geoff Schneider (lead guitar, lead vocals), Paul Dunay (rhythm guitar, slide guitar), Rick Lubell (bass, vocals), Doug Knight (piano, keyboards), Aaron Hagele (percussion, vocals), and JP Geoghegan (drums, art direction).

Recorded at Horizon Studios West, Northbound Train was produced by Michael Caplan and Geoff Schneider and engineered, mixed, mastered, and produced by Vic Steffens.

Encompassing ten tracks, the album begins with “Light Of The Moon,” which opens on low-slung Southern rock guitars, vaguely reminiscent of Dickie Betts. A pushing, finessed rhythm gives the tune a rambling flow as country-gospel-infused vocals imbue the lyrics with persuasive tones.

Highlights on the album include “Jokers Wild,” which showcases the dazzling, soulful voice of Milo Barer atop a bluesy tune undulating on ebbing and rising layers of harmonics. While “Jealous Man” hums on Americana flavours drenched in the drawling colours of a slide guitar. When the lead guitar takes over, producing delicious, piercing licks, the song assumes Allman Brothers-like aromas.

Red Matter

Red Matter

On “Burn Out Bright,” Red Matter parades their jam band heritage, delivering a wonderful jazz-laced rock song decorated by Schneider’s superlative legerdemain on his axe. A personal favourite because of its Midwestern-country-rock motion, “Cool My Bone” conjures up memories of John Mellencamp.

Akin to a musical chameleon on Northbound Train, Red Matter merges tangs of everything from Americana to gospel-laced soul.

Northbound Train Track Listing:

1. Light Of The Moon
2. Hole In My Heart
3. Jokers Wild
4. Northbound Train
5. Jealous Man
6. Not A Soul Around
7. Burn Out Bright
8. Just Shine
9. Cool My Bones
10. Huddled Masses

Run Time: 69:00
Release Date: May 5, 2023
Record Label: Mighty Quinn Records