Ever since the release of the wildly catchy and emotional song, ‘Brother’, in 2011, fans across Australia and the world have been patiently waiting for the release of Matt Corby’s debut album. In the five-year waiting period Corby teased us with a string of singles and even an EP, wetting our tastebuds for what was (hopefully) to come. The release of an album as highly anticipated as this, has the potential to go one of two ways. Disappoint us as hard as the finale of How I Met Your Mother, or live up to everything you had hoped for. Fortunately for Corby, Telluric most definitely has done the latter.
From his beginnings, Corby has been on an extensive journey to produce this soulful and intimate album. Despite recording an album while in the USA, he decided to shelve the project.
“There were two producers and too many people all saying what the album should be and so it pretty much turned into a massive fucking mess,” Corby has previously revealed.
Returning to Australia, he underwent a series of lengthy creative processes, including living in isolation for six months, and learning many of the instruments featured on the album well enough to solidify his ideas for the album.
To some, this may seem a bit over the top. However, when you see what he has produced in Telluric, you gain an insight into his process of self-discovery and maturation. Lyrically, Corby covers some serious ground, touching on many themes including the difficulties involved in intimacy in ‘Belly Up’ and ‘Knife Edge’, as well as expressing the complications of being caught up in a system you don’t want to be a part of in ‘Wrong Man’.
Corby’s powerful vocal abilities have not wavered from his early days. The vocals on each track are quite different from next, showing off his wide ranging and unique sound. From smooth and intimate tracks ‘Belly Up’ and ‘Good To Be Alone’ – which can really only be enjoyed from a bath tub whilst knocking back a glass of red – to the more soulful and upbeat songs, ‘We Could Be Friends’ and ‘Why Dream’, the album’s mixed sound takes the listener on a soulfully emotional rollercoaster.
The broad and varied instrumental work is definitely a standout of the album. The rich and layered sounds in ‘Smooth Lady Wine’, going from the mellow bass and percussion at the beginning to the surprising yet pleasing addition of the flute midway accompanies and adds great depth to the vocals throughout. Comparatively, in ‘Monday’, Corby’s use of vocal percussion as the predominant instrument throughout creates an organic and raw sound.
Telluric makes it startlingly clear why so many kept their faith in Corby over the long wait. The themes that encompass the album, the complex and rich production of each track and Corby’s hauntingly beautiful vocal ability will only makes you want more, reinforcing the fact he is one of the country’s most talented songwriters around.