"With such a multitude of albums released at the tail-end of last year, it’s not hard to see that some albums released may have passed you by. Now looking back at the end of 2018, i’m going to tell you about one of the most intriguing Australian albums of 2018. Time by M.E. Baird."
When I sat down with Matt at the end of last year, we began the discussion about his second solo album and fifth overall by the comparisons that his vocal prowess draws to my mind. “I don’t mind that comparison” Matt begins as I inform him that his baritone delivery is reminiscent of Nick Cave. “I don’t have any specific people that are there (as influences) all the time. In saying that, my touchstones for songwriting has always been Leonard Cohen, Bob Dylan and Nick Cave for more of the lyrical component. Specifically for Time, I was listening to a lot of Scott Walker and also David Sylvian. Sylvian was the main influence (behind layering sounds). Lou Reed was another big one.”
The predecessor to Time was recorded in Melbourne back in 2014 but due to a lot of a personal things going on, it took Matt a few years to release this record. Relocation to the North Coast of NSW also was a contributing factor in the delayed release of Fall. “I had a permanent part time position at Deakin University in Geelong and my partner was working 18-20 hour days. There was a lot of other stuff going on at that time such as illness and deaths in the family. It was quite surreal really, it’s one of those situations where you think back but you can’t really recall what was going on because so much was happening.”
“To be honest, I can’t believe I wrote and recorded an album in the time. In one week it literally all fell apart, my father passed away and he was the last in a line of family members that had passed on, Deakin let me go on Tuesday, my dad passed on the Thursday and my partner said I cant do these hours anymore and we decided to go for change and move up to be with family here.”
Recorded analogue with a lot of concept and thinking behind each of the nine tracks, Time is a record that will draw you back in with its sweeping cinematic approaches. So how long did it take to bring this album to life? “All up we were off and on for about 18 months, some stuff went down in a couple of takes. There’s three or four tracks that we did and they were surprisingly fast. That’s down to the amazing musicians I had playing alongside me. That was the mission, we didn’t have a date to finish and wanted the songs to be the best they possibly could.”
M.E. Baird’s 'Time' is available on all your favourite streaming services with gigs showcasing the album to come further into 2019. Keep your eyes peeled on The Night Vibe for all the info.