Matthew Jay is being tipped for being this years big thing. As an artist he's as likely to grace the covers of Smash Hits as he is to grace the covers of Mojo which just about makes him the perfect interview subject for Designer Magazine. After a series of low key EPs out the general public can finally get to hear what all the fuss is about with the debut album "Draw" released this week. Its one of the albums of the year but you wouldn't imagine it coming from a person who used to listen to Shakin Stevens and believes Eminem is the new Bob Dylan.
Q: How does it feel to be this years critics choice?
A: I totally respect music journalism. Everyone loves until they get slagged off. I read a lot of music journalism, old and new, and these people are writing things down because they mostly love music. I think one of the best reviews I had was of a shite gig but this guy said "it is a shiet gig but the songs are good". I respect that more than someone saying its fantastic just because everyone else is - the music industry is full of bullshit.
Kelly Jones is someone who has been slagged off a lot. Of course you don't like someone who doesn't like you. If they keep calling him "meat and potato" then he's not going to like them.
Q: Using the term loosely as a folk singer what's your lyrical palette?
A: Its all about personal experience really. Its the stuff I respond to best. I like Bob Dylan when he was talking about himself but I wasn't too keen on his hip lyrics and his reactionary stuff. I liked him when he was just being honest. I'm just sat around at the moment listening to Eminem. People say its a strange choice but my favourite artist is Bob Dylan and Eminem reminds me of Bob Dylan. Its not so strange!!!
Q: There's an honesty and passion in your music as opposed to the attitude of a city band?
A: I don't know. I think the Stone Roses and Oasis, although they've got attitude, still have an honesty. You can have attitude in lots of different ways. You can jump around and swear alot which is cool, in fact I'm quite a fan of Eminem. I think the music I play is quite confrontation in as though its quite bare - I don't mind showing a bit of myself now and again.
Q: It was your parents who got you into music wasn't it?
A: I think I'd always been into music. You don't know what is cool when you're young. I was into Queen, Michael Jackson and I think my mum bought me Shakin Stevens which I like for a while but then I got into Elvis.
My parents were really into their classical music and it got me into Tchaikovskey, who I still listen to this day. I think he was probably one of the first rock stars with his weird attitude and his massive beard. He was a nutter who was in love with his mum. I was listening to Dylan, Stones, Beatles, Led Zep up until the age of about 5 when you just listen to your parents record collection
I think the first record I bought was Michael Jacksons "Thriller". I still like the production of Quincy Jones - he's a perfectionist but he still gets soul on the records.
The album "Draw" is out now