death comesto matteson
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death comesto matteson

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The best kept secret in music


"Have you heard: death comesto matteson's "If I'm Going Down, You're Coming With Me""

Murfreesboro, Tennessee locals Death Comesto Matteson have a penchant for “sad bastard music,” or perhaps more appropriately, delicately built indie rock ballads about love lost or unrequited love that land vocally somewhere in the vein of Badly Drawn Boy or Pedro the Lion. Aside from Europe’s post-punk greats of the late 1980s (Joy Division, The Smiths, et al) few bands are able to pull of a perpetual melancholy with much success musically or commercially. But whether or not he’s truly as depressed as the album would suggest, lead singer Matteson does a good job of projecting sincerity and his lyrical capabilities are more impressive than most aspiring acts. Lines such as “Rock and roll will never die/But you and I will my dear” lend themselves to memory and sound more poetic then cheesy when heard in context. That’s not to say Death Comesto Matteson is anything like the aforementioned bygone post-punk groups. They’re nowhere near their league. But they do show potential for distinguishing themselves in Nashville’s competitive local music scene and perhaps eventually even the national indie rock circuit.

Stephanie Trick
- Red is All The Rage

"death comesto matteson"

Death Comes to Matteson

If you are looking for a happy pop band, keep looking. Death Comes to Matteson is more of a mix of Morrissey and the Cure but not as whiny as Morrisey and not as pop as the Cure. This band is an intimate look inside with a courageously real perspective. At times the statement seems to be that there is more to life than this. Lines like "This isn't love, holding hands falling down the stairs" and "If what you want and what you get are the same, I will not know what to do with myself," tell a beautifully tragic story. There is a sense that Peter Matteson is telling us that we should deal with our demons head on, appreciate what we do have and realize it is ok to yearn for more. So sit back, listen, smoke a clove cigarette and drink expensive wine from the bottle while contemplating your purely sexual relationship that is doomed to be never more.

Trey Mitchell


"Vanderbilt Hustler"

WRVU Benefit to showcase local talent

By Kelly Taylor and Clare Scalzi
September 10, 2004

Though originally trained as an opera singer, Nashville's Peter Matteson now chooses to use his classically toned vocal chords in the pursuit of rock music. His band, Death Comesto Mattheson, will play Saturday night along with Clist, Disappointed by Candy and By Divine Right at WRVU's Back to School Benefit show at The End. "Death Comesto Matteson" (pronounced Death Comes to Matteson, but spelled Comesto because of the band's affinity for three word band names) has a strong, emo-flavored sound. Matteson started out in music by writing Christian worship songs, feeling that the current church songs lacked the power and relevance needed to reach today's youth. While his lyrics still have some subtle religious undertones, listeners by no means have to be "believers" to enjoy a DCM performance. Each live show that DCM puts on is both memorable and unique, and the band maintains an impressive level of both emotion and pitch on stage as well as on their recently released EP "If I'm Going Down, You're Coming With Me." Matteson is known for mixing it up on stage. The audience at The Red Rose in Murfreesboro Sept. 7 got a special treat when the band re-mixed their songs to dance beats. Peter Matteson went solo at a Sept. 4 CD release party for another local band, Thornton, and wowed the audience with a more inviting version of Ace of Base's "All That She Wants." The songs on DCM's EP are vivid and haunting, and with lines like "your constant laughing eyes make it hard for me to breathe," you'll realize those angst-ridden poems that you wrote in high school weren't quite the creative masterpieces that you once thought.
- Vanderbilt Hustler

"Nashville City Paper Interview"

Heard Around Town: Death Comes to Matteson

June 27, 2005

Background music it is not. With Death Comes to Matteson, the full force of the band's emotional weight hits you quite hard, and you're either enchanted or turned off completely. That's exactly how they want to come across, and they largely succeed on their latest record, If I'm Going Down, You're Coming With Me. Peter Matteson spoke with us about the band behind the sad face.

Members, ages, instruments and day jobs: Peter Matteson, 27, guitar and voice, Bound'ry waiter; Jay Arnold, 22, guitar, CD Warehouse employee; Mike Walker, 23, drums, Starbucks manager; Joseph Ash, 26, bass, handyman; Luke Jones, 28, keyboards, Loews Vanderbilt valet.

Why the name? Partly it's because I am a Christian and a big part of that that I'm still figuring out is, there's this Bible verse that says, "I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live, yet not I, but Christ liveth in me." It's taking that as a concept, trying every day to remember that there's Peter Matteson the name and all the history that comes with it. And there's the Peter Matteson that I can be today and remembering no matter what's happened in the past, today is new and fresh and whether it's good or bad, it's still joy because it's amazing to be alive and a human. … I think you kinda have to kill your dreams to some degree to find what they really should be.

Do people take the wrong idea from that? Yeah. It's really weird. There's a guy who e-mailed us and wants us to play this funeral. ... I think people think we're about sadness a lot more than we are.

So what are you about? A lot of the idea is that America has become numb trying not to be sad; you'll see it in the incredibly high rates of depression in people, especially intelligent people. So I wanted to make music to force people to have emotion when they become emotionless, so they could actually feel alive again. At times it needs to be loud; at times it needs to be soft; but it should never be just there. It's taking from the operatic convention of big, like Mahler and Stravinsky and the classical music I grew up with. At the same time I wanted to make sure the lyrical content was about big things, not just a thing of, "I met a girl and she's really pretty and let's go surfing," partly because that's already been done.

How do you create that feeling? One thing we try to find is the interplay between people - less like grooving on something and more like layering things. You may play the same part over again for a long time but the way it's layered can make what you're playing completely different. It's easier for me to play that way because I don't have to figure out 40 different chords for every song.

How do you write songs? Through my music I try to take up people's pain as much as I can to alleviate it. I stopped writing songs about myself a long time ago because I'm really kind of boring. All I do is eat, sleep, work and call my family. I think there are a lot more important things than me.

What are your plans for the near future? We're going into the studio this month to do the first five songs of the new record. Depending on if we can learn the rest, we're going to do the rest in July and hope we get an unpackaged but mixed version before a tour - 10 days - on Aug. 4th. We're going up to New York and play up there, and we should be releasing the new record in September.

- Nashville City Paper


Non-fiction EP (2002)
If I'm Going Down, You're Coming With Me EP (2003)


Feeling a bit camera shy


Peter Matteson entered the world of music via classical vocal, and trumpet competitions. As a college freshman he performed Donizetti’s “L’elisir d’amore” with the Nashville Opera. By the age of 20 he shunned the traditional belief that pure musical virtuosity has intrinsic value. There is a difference between performing as an athlete or as an artist.
The sound of death comesto matteson starts with the dramatic dynamics of Igor Stravinsky and the lush, stacked chords of Ralph Vaughn Williams. Adding the influence of lyricists such as Michael Stipe and the vocal melodies of Tears for Fears, comesto has come to resemble an amalgam of Pedro the Lion, Depeche Mode, Mineral, Elliott, and The Cure.