Mattiel

Monqui Presents

Mattiel

Fri, June 7

Doors: 9:00 pm / Show: 9:30 pm

Bunk Bar

Portland, OR

$12.00

This event is 21 and over

Mattiel
Mattiel
It’s afamiliar story: fledgling singerdoes soul-sucking day job in order to fund their real passionduring the nocturnal hours. Except Mattiel Brown, Atlanta’s rising star, is arare exception to this time-honoured tradition: a fulfilled creativeby day andnight, albeit in different contexts. “It’slike I have two full-time jobs:designer andmusician,” she says, humbly hip to hergood fortune. During office hours, Brown works as an ad designerandillustrator at MailChimp, a position she’s enjoyed for four years. “I work with a great video production team, in a greatstudio. Luckily, they’re a company that encourage side gigs.” Out of office hours, Brown swaps the design studio for the stage, a softly-spoken, chilled-outdesign nerd turned rock & roll belter,performing bold,vintage soul asMattiel(pronounced ‘maa-TEEL’). Brown grewup on a five-acre farm in rural Brooks, Georgia, the only child of a Detroit native. “My mom bought the farm in the early ‘90s. She had –still has –horses, so I learnedto ride western-style when I was 6, 7 years-old,” (askillBrownnods toin hercover art). As an adolescent, Brown delighted inthe ‘60s folk and pop of hermother’s limited vinyl collection: Donovan,Peter Paul and Mary,andJoan Baez.As an adult, relocated inneighbouring Atlanta, she’dsing along to theradio on the long drives to work: Screamin’ Jay Hawkins,Andre 3000,Dylan,Marc Bolan,Sister Rosetta Tharpe,andJack White.When Brownfirst began jamming withInCrowd, the Atlanta-based song-writing and production team behind her dynamite eponymous debut, shehad no real designs on making a whole album andno gameplanbeyond the funof “creating something out of nothing.”She said, “That process is always prettyastounding to me, and doing it with other people is even better.” But her producers, Randy Michael and Jonah Swilley, knew a good thing when they heard it: Brown and InCrowd had chemistry. InCrowd’s founders, both skilled multi-instrumentalists,met in 2014,as session musicianstouring with soul man Curtis Harding. Michael –an experienced player who’dco-written withHardingand racked up impressive session spots with the likes of Bruno Mars,andThe Next Day-era Bowie–played guitar, while Swilley (producer, writer and performer since age 9and younger brother of Black Lips bassist Jared)playeddrums. On the road, they bondedover a mutual love of vintage R&Rand ‘90s rap. “We discovered we both loved The Beatlesas much as Jay-Z, Dylan as much as the Arctic Monkeys,” remembers Swilley. Back in Atlanta,once the Harding tour hadwrapped,thepairformed a band,Black Linen, writing reverb-washed guitar music inspired by Tarantino soundtracks,by way of ‘60s Cambodian psych. Mattiel’ssound might borrow from the past, but their art direction–Brown’s inspiring handiwork, of course–isdecidedly forward-thinking, all colour block aesthetics(ála the White Stripes) andartful, design-savvy music videos. “Idon’t wanna hit people over the head with like,bell bottoms and long hair andaJimmy Hendrixoutfit,” Brown laughs. “People have seen all that before.” Mattiel isa “fresh mesh of retro and contemporary,”saysSwilley,the latter thanks in large part to Brown’s vision, voice and on-stage energy. “She's very exciting to watch. She doesn't rehearse it or try to emulateanyone; she's just doing own her thing. And she's not fazed by the crowds [as evidenced during theirshows to date: arecent,three-date support slot for Portugal The Man]. It’skind of incrediblereally, because in person she's pretty chilled and softly spoken, but when she gets on stage...in the last six months, she's really been killing it.” With a European festival circuit tour scheduled for this summer, Mattiel isno longer Atlanta’s best kept secret.L