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Download Santa Rosa Fangs

by Matt Costa
  • Release type: Album
  • Year: 2018
  • Tracks: 12
  • Duration: 40:37
  • Size, Mb: 94.4
  • Bitrate: MP3 320
  • Genre: Pop/Rock

Review

Presented as a loose narrative about a California woman named Sharon and her two ill-fated brothers, Santa Rosa Fangs is the fifth studio album by singer/songwriter Matt Costa. Inspired as much if not more by Costa's own life, remembrances, and learned stories from having lived in multiple parts of the state, it interweaves real and fictional accounts for an album that's ultimately a tribute to California itself. Costa is known for his renderings of pop sounds from decades past, including '60s folk, '70s AM pop, and '80s college rock, and Santa Rosa Fangs basks in updated '60s pop with allusions to Motown, the Kinks, and the San Francisco sound, among other retro styles. It was produced by Peter Matthew Bauer (the Walkmen) and Nick Stumpf (French Kicks), who honor his deliberate return to more stripped-back arrangements here, at least in comparison to his fourth LP, the more orchestral Matt Costa. Despite limited personnel, the results are still rich and warm right from the opener, "I Remember It Well." A bright and jangly '60s pop hybrid with prominent piano, it establishes the album's lush harmonies, hummable melodies, and theme of nostalgia. Next up, "Sharon" is a lively rock tune that introduces the colorful heroine ("Amongst the buffoons and the bogarts she's strung out again"). Later, the sparser folk-rock ballad "Ritchie," in which the two brothers lose their lives, was inspired by Costa's own cousins, who died in separate motor vehicle accidents in the early '80s. West Coast folk, psychedelia, and sunshine pop also inform the album, which closes with a reverb-washed acoustic version of the opener ("I Remember It Well #2"). Shimmering, melodically sweet, and tragic, Santa Rosa Fangs is an ambitious set, with songs that nonetheless go down easy and will also stand alone well on playlists without the album's well-crafted context.

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