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It is a rare thing, like a tinnie under five bucks or a pub unpolluted by whatever scourge of tweeny-bopper to have scrapped up a meager million strong following belting out how damn low they feel after being let go from their tumultuous tweeny-bopper relationship, to find a soul, a larrikin, a force, that with utter resolution and true blue zeal we can dub a bloody great ‘Strayyan.
Mathas. The bloody legend. Is it. He got things cookin’ nicely with his sophomore album Armwrestling Atlas and he’s back with more in the form of his new single Bravo Troll, a comment on the fluid agenda of the proverbial under the bridge cretin, that is still lurking in its damp, filthy crevice to its new iteration, the radiating dominance of those youtube comments.
As Australian as this sun burnt land, Mathas brings passion and wit to things that are going crap balls in politics, society and damn life. Bravo Troll is the new offering from this contemporary of Ned Kelly and it’s about to hit the live scene.
This is a man who, gripping his stubbie in one hand, tongs in the other, coughing up the red earth of our land, deep in a man- hole, good ol’ Gerald the dragon- lizard strutting his sleek self camera left, a bowa constrictor going wherever he wants, spits out such a deep, deep flow about the good ol’ government, their laws and what he bloody thinks of them. You’ll feel the sun burn rise on your skin, because this mate is as Australian as the gargantuan hole that we have in our ozone layer and through his combination of slam poetry, synths and beats, he’s highlighting where we’re being crisped to a husk of our free Australian selves.
As a courageous force of nature, he’s brutally and elegantly throwing his shade onto areas where he thinks there’s been enough damn burning. He pens lyrics that are unashamedly calling out what he sees as absolute idiocy in the shape of bureaucratic justification, ignorance or abstraction. And he’s about to do it from the stage, having announced the Bravo Troll single and national tour.
It would be fitting to liken Mathas’ upcoming Bravo tour to a Ned Kelly campaign trail. If Ned Kelly was to have squad goals and be running for PM come July, Bernie Sanders would be called in for economics tutorials on how to not screw the people over and Mathas would be deep up in the speech writing needs. If times, they became of the essence, Nedo need only read out, passionate word by sincere, zealous word any song that sprang from the pen of his venerable ghost writer. If Mathas had been cruising it in 1800s, it’s safe to say he would have slayed as Ned Kelly’s ghost writer. We can only wait for that dramatized biopic to emerge.
Astoundingly, Mathas doesn’t throw the shade and then run for the burbs, his critical eye turns to solutions that might just mitigate the havoc and pain he observes. Imploring the power that be to humour the old adage of just a little bit of give or take in the rutted road to absolute progress. “How about you just smoke that at home.” Mathas isn’t about slamming the powers that be and then retreating into safety, he’s upfront about being just a bloody Australian who loves his country and will use his craft to call what many see as inevatible as the heat from the sun. In his clip for Enforce Less, as he steadily gets more burnt, you see this guy is legit, this is music with a conscience, a backbone.
He’s not badass ‘cause he swaggers into the club and all become overwhelmed by his oozing sexuality but because he’s walking through the tangled bush of the Australian political, social and economic situation, to a justice beat that’s drumming hard and is delivered as fresh and fierce as a true filthy good slam poet can. In Enforce Less off Armwrestling Atlas as his mouth is covered by dirt, it’s not hard to make the leap to censorship and what that means for the music industry, Australia as a nation and transparency. The shit he deals with is big and has consequences beyond a passive reading of a buzzfeed list.
Saturday 30th April 2016
Wide Open Space Festival – Alice Springs NT
Thursday 12th May 2016
‘Cool Accidents Singles Club’
Newtown Social Club – Sydney NSW *
Friday 13th May 2016
The Small Ballroom – Newcastle NSW
Saturday 14th May 2016
‘Cool Accidents Singles Club’
Northcote Social Club – Melbourne VIC *
Sunday 15th May 2016 (solo show)
The Grace Emily – Adelaide SA
Friday 20th May 2016
Amplifier Bar – Perth WA
Saturday 28th May (day)
Big Pineapple Music Festival – Sunshine Coast QLD
Saturday 28th May (night)
Black Bear Lodge – Brisbane QLD
While you’re here, check out our list of the best music biopics out there.