Kalle Mattson Anchors

Kalle Mattson Anchors
Upon first listening to Anchors, the debut from Kalle Mattson, it's difficult to look past the thin, brittle and ennui-drenched quality of vocalist Kalle Wainio's delivery. But after a few more spins, it becomes the band's greatest asset. Mixed by eternally underrated Toronto, ON musician Howie Beck, Wainio's voice is left unsullied, free from double-tracking, harmony or voice correction, allowing songs like "Thick as Thieves" and "Shattered Minds" to spill over with anti-character and slacker charisma. As expected, Anchors is fraught with reference points and conduits, with the vocal quality of Stephen Malkmus, Thurston Moore and David Berman coming off as the most obvious examples. But songs like "Come & Gone" and "Singing Knives" manage to capture the livewire guitar tone of Wilco's Nels Cline and the vertigo pacing of Polvo and Helium. Anchors is a splendid surprise, much more inventive, focused, meaty, individualistic and industrious than you would ever imagine coming from a group of early adults (originally) from the Soo. On second thought, it makes perfect sense. (Parliament of Trees)