The straight forward way that Matthew Hoppock (Manipulator Alligator) tells his folk stories are unflinching, funny and very poignant. He makes lo-fi music with his guitar and keyboard, and has an ear for infectious hooks. We Raised Them is his first full length and has the tightest production of any of his releases. His whole goal with these songs is to show us these vignettes from various times in his life. These off kilter folk songs make you tap your feet and smile at the same time. There is an energy to them because you can tell that Matthew believes what he is saying. That these aren’t just words to him.
The album opener, “i wish that everything”, is a vivid sketch of from his childhood. ‘When I was a kid, my parents hit a deer with our van, we were hungry we took that thing home and we ate it. Did you suffer when that car was all up in your face? You’re all like I was just walking here, belly full of baby deer.’ Not your everyday folk song is it?
“i get along with you well” features Matthew’s keyboard in place of his guitar. It’s a simple song but sung convincingly.
“your crescent moon” is the song I linked on the player above. It’s a folk song with Americana leanings. ‘I want your love, wrapped around my heart like a tourniquet, keepin’ all my insides in’ he expounds.
The combination of the subject matter of these songs and their delivery makes Matthew a very unique songwriter. You can get the rest of his music library at cllct.com.