|Photo by Aneleise Ruggles|
We're suckers for really well done power pop, and JATK (the project of Boston singer/songwriter Matt Jatkola) is quickly becoming a new favorite. His latest single, "Conscious Wonder," is a prime example of that. It's this giant, jangly as anything pop song that reminds me of mid-90's Matthew Sweet, Atlantic-era Lemonheads, and a little Gram Parsons thrown in. It's a gorgeous and sunny pop song literally perfect for this period of the summer (if it ever stops raining here in New England). If this was released in 1995, this would have been a pretty decent local radio hit.
As with all truly great power pop, the sunny vibes of "Conscious Wonder" mask a much darker story. Matt Jatkola explains:
“The lyrics are about hugging the line between existence and non-existence, and they touch on some heavy subjects about death and struggle. I wanted the sound of the track to encompass the feelings of joy and grief at once. Not an easy task, but I think we captured something special. You can tap your foot to it or dance to it, but there's some twangy country lap steel longing away in the background too. Nothing is ever just happy and that's ok. There's a comfort in thinking that, in some way, you're going to live forever. You won't in a real sense, but you will in a philosophical sense. And at the very least, you're alive today. These are all truly wonderful things to contemplate and write about. They're especially poignant topics for me right now.”