Matchbox Twenty - How far we've come
There's a brand new recording on the way from one of America's hottest groups of the last few years. Matchbox 20, which burst onto the scene a few years back and have been a fixture on the charts ever since.
The new recording is called Exile on Mainstream and is a greatest hits package which features six new tunes to tap your toes to. The first release of the new effort is How far we've come, a fast paced little number that kind of bears a resemblance to Billy Joel's We Didn't start the Fire of a number of years ago.
Front man Rob Thomas kicks out the lyrics in fine style while past events roll by on a screen behind the band. The song begins with a great opening and heavy beat to get you ready to move along as Thomas chants out the lyrics and urges us all to "see how far we've come".
Thomas has a great ability to take a song and craft in his own persona, with one of the most distinctive voices in rock these days, he paces the song at just the right tempo and takes it to the the big finish.
The group have made infrequent recordings of late, Thomas feeding the solo career ambitions while still writing with the group. This debut tune for the new recording brings back memories of the early days of 1996's Yourself Or Someone Like You, which featured a trio of hits, Real World. Long Day, 3 am, which launched the band onto the music scene providing something different for the times.
That was followed up by a disappointing Mad Season, which while spawning hits like Bent and If You're gone, didn't seem to have the freshness or immediacy that the debut album did.
The Third album didn't prove to be a breakaway offering either, with Unwell pretty well tabbed as the main song of note.
As the reactions came in about the two follow ups, the critical blows began to become more frequent, as the band seemed to lose some of the shine from its debut production. It's never a good thing when your music becomes the impetus for satire, such as this Onion piece provided.
Part of the malaise might have been to do with the side path that front man Thomas took after the first Matchbox album,he has had some serious success on his own, but it's good to see that the complete unit can still get things worked out to try to recapture some of that early buzz about them in the late nineties.
From this first offering from Exile on Mainstream, the band seems to be returning to a more recognizable beat. How far we've come, gets you wanting more along the same vein, fast paced and topical music that keeps you listening from start to finish.
Artist- Matchbox 20
Recording- Exile on Mainstream