As frontman for the California blues rockers Delta Spirit, Matthew Logan Vasquez has long established a ‘no rules’ policy for their music, placing them at an endearingly weird crossroads between the squeak of vintage guitar amps and the ambitious rush of futuristic shoegaze-pop; and from their masterful self-titled LP onwards, they’ve made the whole thing look incredibly easy. At the heart of that, no doubt, is Matthew Vasquez’s gravelly drawl, thick as a horse’s neck; the kind of voice that ties all disparate threads together, stops you in your tracks, and commands you to listen. Since Delta Spirit took a break, Vasquez has dropped two solo albums in as many years: this year’s LP is literally called ‘…Does What He Wants’. Despite that title, Vasquez’s tired-of-this-shit blues is a touch more focused than his main gig, rolling together country-rock, Motown strings and piano ballads into an intoxicatingly smooth smoke; and yes, it flips between them all with a careless attitude, wearing its emotional scars with a playful shrug. As much as Vasquez comes off as the suffering troubadour, as much as he seems enigmatic and unknowable behind that hundred-yard stare, it seems like he’s found out what he wants for the time being – and so much the better for us.
Sat 8 Jul, 8pm at Actress and Bishop, 35 Ludgate Hill, Birmingham B3 1E. £6. seetickets.com
Published on: Sun 25 Jun 2017