22nd February, 2019
In Now That I’m Real, Paris artist Matthieu Roche has combined in perfect fashion the twin forces of darkwave with synthpop and constructed an emotively deep and delicately precise work of the highest calibre. As melodic as it is spacious, his ability to provoke and restrain through song-craft is on display on every single one of the album’s 11 tracks. His masterful control of both ends of the sonic spectrum enables the creation of a sparkling array of melodies that sit above a myriad of subtle danceable grooves. Roche’s clever deployment of his own dispassionately passionate vocal imbues his creations with an a sense of warmth and poignancy that both exposes his need for escapism but at the same time barely masks his anxieties. Wonderfully consistent throughout, there is unlikely to be a better album in this part of music’s dark arts this year.