Matthew Stephen brings a symphonic grace to pop on “The Fire” and “Blue & Gold”. Nicely fitting into the very moment, these two tracks nicely embody the determination that seems to have run through the whole of the world. By far the highlight of the sound comes from the thoughtful way that he sculpts the verses. Word choice proves profound for everything unfurls at its own distinct pace, giving it a grandeur that reigns supreme. Arrangements help to further frame these tracks.
“The Fire” (About Chernobyl)
“Blue & Gold” (about the current war in Ukraine)
Ambient at first, “The Fire” works itself into a frenzy of activity. The song sweeps forward with a gorgeous gaze to it, one that feels doubly refreshing. By ensuring that this song’s rhythm evolves in a careful, compassionate way he gives thanks to those who gave their lives trying to contain the serious threat to safety that Chernobyl possessed. Everything on here deserves to be played with volume. Much more symphonic with its scope “Blue & Gold” makes sure to maintain a regal sensibility to the whole of the adventure. Within this piece he holds absolutely nothing back. Full of a desire for life the song unfurls at a delicate pace about it one that feels doubly refreshing. Within this piece he celebrates a sense of togetherness one that has a delightful, colorful vibrancy to it.
“The Fire” and “Blue & Gold” revel in Matthew Stephen’s deft understanding of history and how it relates to our present.