The Proclivities
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The Proclivities

Band Rock Singer/Songwriter

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Apr
22
The Proclivities @ The Evening Muse

Charlotte, North Carolina, USA

Charlotte, North Carolina, USA

Apr
21
The Proclivities @ The Garage

Winston-Salem, North Carolina, USA

Winston-Salem, North Carolina, USA

Apr
11
The Proclivities @ Tanner's Creek

Norfolk, Virginia, USA

Norfolk, Virginia, USA

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This band has not uploaded any videos

Music

Press


Apologies to The Proclivities frontman Matt Douglas for the comparisons to Josh Ritter, but it's a compliment of the highest order: Ritter is as good and smart an American songwriter as is working today, and Douglas—who sometimes shares members of Ritter's backing band—is graced by many of the qualities that make Ritter so endearing. A true romantic possessed by candor and wit, Douglas turns complicated pop fare into a marathon of charm. And is it just me, or do I hear a little Douglas humor rubbing off on Ritter's forthcoming Historical Conquests? Matt Douglas deserves your ears, as does Ritter. Philadelphia's visiting The Bee Team makes totally cute acoustic pop. 10 p.m. —GC - The Independent


Raleigh guitarist Chris Boerner has been an integral ingredient in the Raleigh music scene for ten years, having a hand in everything from experimental jazz to rock to hip hop. His signature fiery sound and expansive knowledge have contributed to successful collaborations, including The Mighty Burners, Mosadi Music, his acclaimed Jazz outfit The Chris Boerner Quartet and his role with the ever-popular Michael Jackson cover band Who’s Bad.

Predispositions is the debut album from his recent association with Matt Douglas, a Fulbright Scholar and seasoned jazz musician. The new group, The Proclivities—also featuring Nic Slaton and Matt McCaughan—offers up an unprecedented sound measured by any of the foursome’s previous projects. Douglas’ songwriting is ambitious and serene with each track probing love lost and redemption found. You get the sense he is wise beyond his years.

His bandmates have proven themselves old hands in the studio. Crisp, clean, and at times haunting, the musicianship blends well with the soft spoken Douglas. Be inclined to expect great things from Douglas and his Proclivities. Favorite tracks include: “Second Floor” “Pauline” and “Love-Life Beginner.”

Go to www.theproclivities.com for more information. Predispositions can be purchased from www.cdbaby.com.
—Dan Reeves - Metro Magazine


Title and director aside, there's not a lot of information available about Coney Island, Ramen Cromwell's film that's due this spring. That is, unless you count Matt Douglas and The Proclivities' score, which reads and winks much like an elliptical, purposefully ambiguous screenplay. We can infer this much: Coney Island is a love story not far removed from Garden State, and its central characters need each other—at least right now, even if they're at first too weak to admit it.

Things bleed open with foreshadowing, The Ciompi Quartet mourning in the midrange via a prelude to "Red Clothes." That's until drummer Matt McCaughan bounces in, his sunny steadiness mirroring Douglas' naively confident vocals, singing the part of a man who's returning to something he'd thought he'd left long ago. Douglas has a voice that pairs equal parts pop bounce and hearthstone fidelity (much like his friend and collaborator Josh Ritter), and it lends his best songs an empirical credibility that's rare.

Douglas, after all, has written plenty of good songs, both here and on The Proclivities' debut Predispositions, but they've often had trouble coalescing into an album. Until now, at least. Coney Island—often harder, more complex and altogether more effective than its predecessor—feels like an unorthodoxly communicative picture, its oscillation between perfectly pleasant tracks about epiphany and relief (closer "Anyways") grinding against moments of turmoil. "Oubliette," which finds our hero's neuroses torturing his previous interests and strides, slinks into a stepwise crawl but eventually spears its narrator, sheets of electric guitar crippling Douglas' lyrics. He has to overcome, and—by disc's end—he does. Especially telling are the irresolute instrumental themes, notable for their humility or grace. Second track "Guy Theme" trips over its chord changes through an electronic haze, much like Christian Fennesz' Endless Summer. But the penultimate "Mermaid Theme" offers a reciprocally open, welcoming framework, proffering the lover that is ready for acceptance.

When Douglas promises "Love is a song that sings real slow" by way of introduction to the closer, you get the point: This band—much like the hero you may imagine for this film—needs its foil and some support, just like everybody else. The Proclivities found that in a movie, and they're notably better for the experience. So much so that someone should give them some help in making their next "film." —Grayson Currin

- The Independent


On his debut album, Predispositions, Matt Douglas--a Fulbright Scholar, an NYU jazz graduate and a classical composer--has written what may be the Triangle's pop song of the year: "Your Secret" creeps and swells up and over, all from the strength of a beautiful soul girder, a pitch-perfect organ guiding Douglas' deliberate acoustic and Chris Boerner's map-burning electric atonality. It's contagious and charismatic, and Douglas' The Proclivities follow suit. One of the most exciting new bands in this state, no kidding.

-Grayson Currin, The Independent - The Independent


On his debut album, Predispositions, singer/songwriter Matt Douglas strays from his jazz roots to wander into the world of folky pop-rock, creating an album full of reflections and observations on hell, happiness and women. Douglas finds his voice, a warm and warbly alto, functioning as its own spiritual soothsayer, taking life lessons of failed relationships, unrequited love and the higher art of understanding God and turning them into open-ended lyrical sermons of inspiration.

But don't be fooled: Douglas is not a champion of romanticized hope. In fact, his songs carry a pragmatic philosophy, relying heavily on his reality and eschewing his illusions. On "Second Floor," Douglas comes to terms with naiveté in romance, singing "I can't be so starry-eyed/ When the stars are loving you" over a sweeping arrangement that, like his voice, flows directly from a tempered shuffle to an emphatic swell. Songs like "Subway Girl," "Pauline" and "Annie" find Douglas on his knees, sorting through the pieces of his broken heart, thinking about second chances and bad timing to acoustic guitars. The gospel-influenced "Your Secret" walks the fine line between a sinner and a saint, sorting out small-town deception and morality over running lines of organs and handclaps.

Douglas isn't overtly optimistic or pessimistic, but he moves with the ebb and flow of his emotion, highlighting the pain and the pleasure through his music. His expert band follows him through those changes like it's their natural bent.

--Katherine Justice, The Independent - The Independent


There's a good chance you haven't heard of the Proclivities; they are a relatively obscure band out of North Carolina led by Matt Douglas, a talented musician with early roots as a jazz saxophone player. Here he picks up a guitar and sets his own lyrics to acoustic and electric instrument-filled songs of relationships and unique characters on his debut singer-songwriter album "Predispositions." The album opener, "Second Floor," sneaks in with its hushed bass and guitar, but takes an interesting turn with some effects, finger snaps and male vocal backing. That's what's fun about this album: You can expect the unexpected. Most songs are filled out with dobro, Wurlitzer, accordian and other great sounds. Douglas' mom even plays cello on the first song. "Subway Girl" has an Iron & Wine-like sound: sweet electric guitar lines play over a subtle acoustic, and then in the middle the song kicks it up a notch with the chorus "I can't be so starry eyed, especially not tonight when the stars are loving you." Every song seems to have its own personality and unique sound, which makes for great listening. "Love-life Beginner" shows the band stripped down to its basic guitar/bass/drums and in full rock mode. - Modern Acoustic Magazine


Discography

Predispositions (self-released), 2006
Music From The Film "Coney Island" (Blackwater Films), 2007
Handguns & Dancing Shoes, 2008

Photos

Bio

Matt Douglas, singer/songwriter for The Proclivities, is a music school trained jazz saxophone player that strayed into the world of songwriting. After graduating from NYU, Matt received a Fulbright Scholarship to study folk music in Budapest, Hungary. It was at that time that Matt started writing songs. After two years, Matt moved to Raleigh, NC where he met up with guitarist Chris Boerner and drummer Matt McCaughan (Bon Iver, The Rosebuds). They have released 3 albums, "Predispositions" (2006), a soundtrack called "Coney Island" (Blackwater Films, 2007), and their most recent "Handguns & Dancing Shoes" (2008). The Proclivities have been seen onstage with the likes of Josh Ritter, Laura Cortese, The Old Ceremony, Caitlin Cary, and more.