Striking Matches - Nothing But The Silence

If you’re a fan of the TV show Nashville or have attended the C2C Country to Country festival you’ll be familiar with the molten hot Nashville duo Striking Matches. Coming to the fore for their songwriting contributions for the TV show, they left an indelible mark on festival goers in London recently with their scorching guitar work on stage at the O2. Working here with the grand master of American music, T-Bone Burnett, Justin Davis and Sarah Zimmerman have delivered what you likely expect: a mainstream friendly set of guitar lick-driven songs mainly dealing with themes of love and relationships.

It can be tough for an act that’s partly made its reputation on stage to translate that energy to their recorded output. Burnett’s experience is vital in Nothing But The Silence capturing some of that exuberance yet you feel the duo have been reigned in a little too much; the only time they properly cut loose is on live favourite ‘Make A Liar Out Of Me’. What does transfer well is their spirit: opener 'Trouble Is As Trouble Does' positively flows; 'Miss Me More' is peppy and full of mandolin; 'Hanging On A Lie' pitches Davis and Zimmerman's harmonies, and plays acoustic against electric guitar well. An over reliance of relationship songs dims their impact somewhat, though the odd beauty like 'When The Right One Comes Along' show what the duo are capable of. With expectation heaped on their shoulders this is a solid start, which is good enough. There's obviously space to grow and heaps of promise here.

Overall

The songwriting duo have put a marker down - they're a band that will only get better.

7

out of 10

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