Matt Tarka doesn’t like being told what to do. Instead, he follows his heart — it’s a good thing, too, because his heart tells him to make honest, catchy music anybody can relate to. The Washington D.C. based singer-songwriter has been putting out material since his 2008 musical debut, and now, nearly a decade later, his current work finds him in the one-of-a-kind niche he’s built for himself. Though the folk rocker’s latest EP, Surely Late, is releasing this Friday, he teamed up with Elmore for an early record stream.
Tarka says that Surely Late is his “attempt at describing a handful of isolated moments of heartbreak, rejection and the ability to plow ahead,” generally negative themes improved upon by upbeat rhythms and obvious energy. The EP opens with “Now Or Never” as Tarka’s distinct voice starts soft with bare guitar strums then bounces right into an old-school pop-rock 80s sound. Even singing seemingly hopeless lines like “We have lost our way,” he offers solace immediately with positive solutions like making amends to his mistakes, all over a bed of constant, wailing rock instrumentation. The closing track, “Bring A Glass,” gently pulses an emotional opening that welcomes Tarka’s aching vocals dancing with Lara Supan’s sparse, haunting harmony. The track feels vast with rich rhythm beating to a cohesive, classic tone.
Surely Late tackles the despair of everyday life, turning it from hopeless to hopeful with Matt Tarka’s carefully and confidently crafted musical arrangements, sincere vocals, and relatable lyrics.
Stream the EP a few days early below and connect with Matt Tarka on Facebook.
Catch Tarka on tour:
11/20/16 Bourbon & Branch Philadelphia, PA
11/25/16 Little Amps Harrisburg, PA