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An Interview With Matt Saxton

Matt Saxton brings out his best with a new and personal single that blends a smooth southern tones contemporary rock tonality and features such an honest and up-front lyrical approach that it really makes you think.

"It's Only Now That I Know" boasts a very cinematic and moving feel and comes through with an impactful message to go along with slide guitars, piano lines and that rock feel that keeps to a subtle but powerful dynamic.

This track is beautifully woven and builds into such an almost anthemic soundscape that it becomes something that engulfs you and you find yourself just getting washed away with the song.

But it feels great to let it wash you away. It's incredibly relatable and the guitar work on this track is outstanding from start to finish as it builds in intensity along with everything else in the song.

You can hear that piano line throughout the songs course, and it keeps everything in one place emotionally.

There is an existential and deepening vibe lurking just beneath the surface of this one and it shines through plenty but keeps its head hidden at times.

You can feel it though. It's got a pull to it and if you listen to the song in full, you'll end up soaking in that feeling the way it was meant to be.

With such a wonderful release, we wanted to have a sit down with Matt to find out where this one came from and what may be next for the artist.

Here's what happened.

Buzz Slayers: Okay so let's start with "It's Only Now That I Know". The single has a very cinematic and impactful sound to it! Where did this track come from??

It is interesting that you mention cinematic because a lot of people have said that this song would work really well in a movie.

It’s Only Now That I Know is about wisdom and the journey, we take to hopefully obtain it.

At some point in our lives, we look back at the past and hopefully recognize the mistakes and the successes.

As a mature artist, this song is therefore a reflective look at the past and realizing how far the gap is between who you thought you were and then who you actually become.

I really wanted to try and create a song which had a bit of an epic/cinematic feel but still felt personal.

I also wanted to write a song where the chords were the same in both the verse and the chorus.

Buzz Slayers: I'm hearing a few styles on this release. Who are some of your biggest musical influences?

For Tonight I would say Bowie is the main influence.

I am such a fan of Bowie's voice and songs.

My voice is a baritone and these days I really like singing in the lower register.

The other influences for this song would be Suede and those synth led bands from the 80s.

I did manage to get Simon Raymonde from the Cocteau twins and Bella Union label to listen to Tonight and he said I sounded like Tom Robinson so that goes back to the theme in It's Only Now That I Know.

I might think I sound like Bowie but I actually sound like Tom Robinson which is of course still a good thing!

Although the song kind of breezes along, the lyrics and theme do come from a very dark place where I have battled chronic periods of insomnia over the years. At one point sleeping pills couldn’t knock me out.

Glad to have turned such a desperate negative experience into something hopefully positive!

Buzz Slayers: So how did this all begin for you really? When did you fall in love with making music?

My older brother was a big fan of The Who so I grew up listening to all of their albums especially Quadrophenia and Who’s Next. The Who’s music got me hooked.

My parents had a small record collection but there were some real gems in it including albums by Leonard Cohen, Crosby Stills Nash and Young, Cat Stevens as well as classical composers like Mozart and Beethoven.

As a kid a was classically trained on the clarinet and piano doing all the grades but by the age of 14 I started to teach myself the drums inspired by Keith Moon.

I have spent many years playing the drums in various bands but I always wanted to write and sing my own songs.

As a teenager I also taught myself the guitar and that led me to writing my own songs.

It has taken many years though to feel more confident writing and singing.

Buzz Slayers: What's next for you as an artist?

I am going to release another single and then the whole album hopefully over the Summer.

Will also be making a video.

Buzz Slayers: What inspires you to write a song?

Inspiration tends to either come from personal feelings/experiences or from great books I have read.

One of my favorite authors is Graham Greene and I released a song called Greeneland about him.

The older I get the more things I want to say in my songs.

Buzz Slayers: What are you doing when you're NOT working on music?

Thinking about working on music!

Buzz Slayers: Who are you listening to right now?

BBC 6 Music for new and old music and Mark Lanegean's albums including the Screaming Trees. I have just finished reading his Sing backwards and Weep book which blew me away. What a story and what a brilliant writer.

Buzz Slayers: Are you putting any thought into live performances?

Would love to play live but I need to find great musicians who can replicate the sound of the recordings. Working on it though! Would love to play with the two brothers who I recorded with but they are always busy with multiple projects.

Buzz Slayers: This single seems like a big undertaking. What kind of advice might you have for other up and coming artists out there?

Not really sure I am in much of a position to give advice!

However, I would say just write and record songs which mean something to you and chances are they will resonate with other people.

Buzz Slayers: Before we go, what would you like to say to fans of the music?

Thanks for listening, it means so much to me.

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