The Catalyst

MATISYAHU

MATISYAHU

The Constellations

Wed, October 17, 2012

Doors: 7:00 pm / Show: 8:00 pm

The Catalyst

Santa Cruz, CA

$22 advance/ $27 at the door

Off Sale

This event is 16 and over

MATISYAHU
MATISYAHU
Few artists make an impact as complete as the one Matisyahu made with his Top 40 hit “King Without a Crown”: Here was a true original, the song announced-a Hasidic Jewish musician from New York City singing reggae songs about his religious devotion. Fans responded to this one-of-a-kind voice, too, driving Youth, Matisyahu’s Grammy-nominated 2006 studio disc, to the top spot on Billboard’s reggae albums chart. That album, as well as Matisahu’s previous recording Live at Stubb’s, went Gold.
True originals, though, don’t stay put for long, and on his bold new album, Light, 29-year-old Matisyahu proves that there’s much more to his artistry than might initially meet the eye.
Light is anything but safe. Produced by David Kahne (Paul McCartney, Sublime, the Strokes), the 14-track collection covers a dizzying amount of stylistic ground, from hard-edged dancehall (“Smash Lies”) and ska-inflected New Wave (“We Will Walk”) to laidback pop-rock (“So Hi So Lo”) and acoustic folk-soul (“I Will Be the Light”). While reggae is far from absent here-see the old-school toasting in “Motivate”-Light finds Matisyahu edging away from his comfort zone into more daring territory.
Despite the lengthy and varied guest list, Light remains a work traceable only to Matisyahu’s unique creative sensibility, an album that reflects more than two years’ worth of religious study, particularly the story of the seven beggars by Reb Nachman. This is the driving spiritual force behind Light. The story is about two children who get lost in a dark forest after fleeing an invasion of their kingdom. Each night a different beggar, each of which suffers from a different ailment, approaches them with food and water. “I feel this theme, though written as a fairytale in the 1800’s, is very relevant to many of the struggles that we face today,” Matisyahu says. “From child soldiers to child sex slaves to everyday people trying to awaken their broken hearts.”
The Constellations
The Constellations
Jump on the bus for this EP, "Sold Out." Your tour guide on this madcap adventure is the magnetic frontman and vocalist Elijah Jones, the ringleader of the twisted circus that is The Constellations. A follow up to the band's debut, "Southern Gothic," and appetizer to the band's second full length, "Let's Get Paid, coming in June, the EP comprises three brand new tunes and a video with fellow Atlanta guest Cee-Lo Greene on "Love Is A Murder."

The band will be on the road all summer on Warped tour.

Atlanta has been providing the backdrop and soundtrack for Elijah Jones' life since childhood and for the music of The Constellations. And he wants to share his hometown's underbelly with the rest of the world. "Atlanta is a huge city, but it still has a small town feel to it," explains the singer. "Everybody knows everybody, you run into the same people at the same bars every week. So it's still kind of Mayberry, but with all the yummy stuff that comes along with being a big city—and all the bad stuff, too."

Jones, the song of a Baptist deacon, taps his experience singing in the church as a child to explore the tension between dark and light in everyone's life. "People ask me, 'How can you be into this weird after hours scene, coming from a Christian background?' But you can't just write about the good in life. There's some bad shit in the human heart, and that part of it is just a little more interesting to me."

"Atlanta is strange," he adds, "because we're all basically pushed together." The hip-hop heads, punk rockers, and indie kids all rub shoulders and mix it up. Our music reflects that inclusive diversity in its far-reaching sound. One expects nothing less from a singer who cites Tom Waits and Cee-Lo of Goodie Mob and Gnarls Barkley as his musical heroes.

The musical diversity of the band comes through on the anthemic party rocker, "Let's Get Paid," and the gospel infused "So It Shall Be."

The band's name refers to the myriad musicians from the regional scene who either contributed to making of their first album or have since played in The Constellations live band. One luminary who drops in is Cee-Lo, whose verse on the electro-rocker "Love Is A Murder" prompted a completely overhaul the track underneath.

Although the line-up would go through numerous changes, today its stable core finds Jones accompanied by a five-piece combo and the non-stop shimmy, shout and wail of two female back-up singers.
Venue Information:
The Catalyst
1011 Pacific Avenue
Santa Cruz, CA, 95060
http://www.catalystclub.com/