For her latest release, genre-hopping songwriter Katie Haverly examines what "matter" means, both that which occupies space, and what it means to matter. But this is more than a context for the album; it's a structure. The songs are impressionistic in their construction, making room for Haverly to linger on affecting lines, pausing on particular piano notes, introducing a soaring guitar line out of the blue, jumping between genres on a dime. She shows this right from the opener, "Zero Null Mono One," where Haverly delivers stuttering vocals like a jazz line, packing multiple instrumental ideas into a minute and a half. "Whir" is a standout, comparing and personifying the cool and heat of Tucson days, shifting from near silence to blistering crescendos. But this imaginative songwriting and technical prowess doesn't detract from Haverly's passionate, introspective stories, which fit comfortably into each and every song. Matter is one of the best albums out of Tucson in recent memory.
A heartrending album that is Katie Haverly's eighth release - Matter adroitly navigates rock, pop, and folk genres, combining jazz sensibilities with poetically introspective lyrics. The gorgeous vocals and tight musicianship pull you in to listen closely, to mull the words, and deeply appreciate the profoundly personal stories she's scribed.
Katie Haverly released a brand new LP, Matter, on March 20th and I think this is just what I needed right now to help maintain some calm rationale in a world that seems to be teetering on chaos. “Thieves” mixes up jazzy folk, smoky vocals, and lyrics poured straight from a reflecting pool into a crystal rocks glass, just so you can hear that ting of a higher harmonies, and offers us a sample of the album’s overarching sound. Structurally complex, but smooth to the senses. Check out “Thieves” but do not stop there.
[Katie] sang songs for people who love real songs, still, too. Channeling Joni Mitchell but updated and rocked up some. My jaw dropped when she started dancing as the street cars and street kids walked by, some of them also stunned by what they weren’t sure they were actually hearing.
Katie Haverly has one of those voices that can lift and soothe, create tension and then release it. It suggests adoration of golden-age (jazzy) folk-pop like Rickie Lee Jones, Judee Sill, David Crosby, and Joni Mitchell—all lovely DNA, certainly—as well as Erykah Badu and Fiona Apple. Yet her songwriting alone could take centerstage.