“Hey Matt” is a joyous, little novelty track that demands immediate replay. There is something about it that just oozes warmth. Asking for a little help from a friend and that friend being The National’s Matt Berninger is all the better. Between hand claps and some ‘flashy’ organ playing, Walter Martin creates a world where pals are always there to lend a hand, even if Randy Newman isn’t.
It feels as if one is at colorful carnival with their best friend. Everyone is just there to help the other enjoy the experience a little bit more. Not being able to sing as well as one wishes is an easy problem to understand. And having a friend like whiskey-stained baritone Berninger certainly aids in overcoming that shortcoming.
We all need a bit more joy in our life. As an artist it is far too easy to take oneself too seriously. Both The National and The Walkmen are bands with a somewhat serious look to them. Their music wouldn’t be called ‘happy’, but that doesn’t mean each individual in the bands need to be made up of dark matter – even if Berninger is sometimes referred to as the Dark Lord. But there is also a Mumbleberry Pie side to The National singer that we don’t get to see enough, and Walter Martin is able to bring that out with ease. It never seems as if the two are acting in this sketchy little track, rather they are just enjoying their three minutes on the phone with one another.
Towards the end of the track, Martin admits that he originally tried to get Randy Newman to sing on the song. Unfortunately, Newman never responded. But Matt doesn’t care if he was the second choice – he would have loved to hear Newman on the track – he just wants to help a friend. And that’s how friends should be.
Now all that needs to happen is May 5th, when Walter Martin’s new album My Kinda Music will be released. Call your friends. Tell ’em it’s happening.
For it’s joy and warm conversational tone, we give “Hey Matt” 9 out of 11 great phone conversations with old friends.
HURRY – LISTEN – WALTER MARTIN