Vancouver-based contemporary pop artist Mathew V has just released his highly anticipated EP, The Outer Circle, which is a gorgeous collection of songs reflecting his coming-of-age experience. After hearing this masterpiece, we do not doubt that Mathew V will become our newest obsession, here at The Honey POP!
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Mathew’s most personal collection of music to date, The Outer Circle, resurfaces many things he had suppressed over the years. There are times when it’s easy to move on and we don’t realize the impact some events have had on our lives until later. Featuring successful singles such as ‘Halo,’ ‘Around Here,’ and most recently, ‘Healing,’ The Outer Circle EP marks a reintroduction of Mathew V.
I feel like I have grown up a lot since my last project. This music is more mature, with a more refined story. I can’t say that it will stay this way forever or where the wind will blow me in the future, but I’m happy that this is where I’m at right now. I’m proud that I got to really sing again and that I was able to get these words off my chest.
Mathew V’s ethereal voice and peculiar sound are present throughout the EP, The Outer Circle, as he revisits the places and tribulations that have molded him into the artist he is today. After discovering his musical inclinations in London, he moved back to Canada to pursue his career. Mathew V combined his classical opera training with a contemporary soundscape to create a signature sound. It is evident in his debut and current work, propelling him to fame. Mathew V will make a great addition to your playlist and you should consider adding him to your musical repertoire as soon as possible, if you haven’t already. As soon as we pressed the play button, we were captivated by his voice. As you can see by our enthusiasm, he is our newest obsession!
Since things are heating up again, we thought it was an excellent time to check in with Mathew V to find out what he has been up to and get some details on his latest EP release, soundscape inspiration, songwriting, Canada, return of live music and much more. So without further ado, let’s get right into it!
‘Halo’ showed us your new musical direction, and we were immediately captivated. What inspired this song, and why did you choose it to introduce your new era?
Thanks so much for the kind words. This song, to me, felt like the introduction to this new era. It was largely inspired by my conversations with collaborator Logan Prescott. We were chatting about how we wanted this to feel, and after exchanging a lot of voice memos back and forth, ‘Halo’ slowly started to take shape.
Speaking of your new musical direction, what other genres do you want to explore in your new musical journey?
I feel like I have little pivots every few months from what genres I’m inspired by. I see pop music as a broad umbrella, and I love playing underneath it. I try to focus more on making music that I want to listen to on repeat regardless of what specific genre or sub-genre it is living in.
‘Around Here’ is a musical treat both sonically and lyrically. How did the idea for this song come about? Have you been satisfied with how the song has turned out?
Thanks again for the kind words. I wrote this song about my hometown and my coming of age years. I still feel palpable emotions when I drive through that town, and it takes me right back. I wanted to capture a glimpse of that feeling, and I think that we accomplished that. The Outer Circle serves as a reintroduction of Mathew V to the world while uncovering new sides and chronicling intimate experiences from your journey so far.
Mathew V, while creating this EP, The Outer Circle, which significant musical landscapes and themes inspired you? What songs did you find challenging to write or produce, and what songs came naturally to you?
This EP has been uncharted waters for me. I never recorded with producers in different countries, tracked such extensive harmony arrangements, or opened up as I have here. However, it feels super empowering to do so. I wrote this EP about the memories and places of my past that still hold such palpable emotional responses for me. I found it super interesting that certain streets, parks, or cities took me right back to certain feelings. I’m happy I was able to dive into that. ‘Written Out’ was definitely the hardest to write as it is very personal and on the nose, and it’s a super vulnerable place to be in. I would say that the rest of the EP went fairly smoothly.
In your recent work, you have demonstrated impeccable storytelling skills. As an artist, how difficult is it for you to delve into past memories and open up to vulnerability for inspiration? Is it scary to open up to the world, or does it give you closure?
I’d say that the writing process is very therapeutic. I get everything off my chest, and the weight is released. I feel a bit differently about the actual release as part of me feels like I’m airing my dirty laundry out to the world. But I remind myself that there are people out there that will connect to these stories and, in turn, will hopefully help them feel not alone.
Which musicians or bands did you listen to growing up that inspired you and contributed to your musical palette and sound today?
I grew up listening exclusively to Celine Dion and Shania Twain. Being surrounded by these emotive melodies and strong vocals, I was able to really grow my taste and personal instincts when it comes to music.
What was it like moving to the UK and transitioning from classically trained opera singer to pop artist? In what ways do you integrate your heritage, cultural influences, and artistic abilities into your music?
I’ll say that when I moved right after high school, I was not emotionally ready to be out on my own in the world. But it was a sink or swim experience that I think has made me a much stronger swimmer. Being surrounded by rich, soulful UK pop music definitely shaped the artist that I am today. I truly started writing there, and I think that all of the music and culture around me influenced that music and those patterns that I was forming.
While the pandemic altered the dynamics of the entire world, did you find any silver linings in the crisis? Has the lockdown hindered or helped your creativity as an artist?
I think it gave me a lot of time to sit with my thoughts (for better or worse), and I think it allowed me to process some things in the writing of this EP that I had pushed down for many years. It’s funny how you really have a hard time finding an excuse to overlook certain feelings when things stop being busy.
From your first release to this newest record, The Outer Circle, what are some things you’ve learned that have helped you become who you are today?
I truly feel like a different person today compared to when I put out my first release. I think my reasoning for why I’m in the industry has really shifted. When I entered the industry, there wasn’t a large chunk of motivation coming from vanity and affirmation. As time has progressed and as I’ve come into adulthood, that aspect is much less enticing. I ultimately really enjoy making whatever music I want to make and the relationships I get to build in that process.
What three songs from your discography would you recommend a new listener to know you better? How do you hope your music translates for your fans?
I think ‘Tell Me Smooth,’ ‘Give It All’ & ‘Healing’ are a nice sampler of what I have to offer thus far. Ultimately, I hope that people take what they need from my music. Whether it is to process, escape, or simply listen to music in the background of a dinner, workout, or car ride. Once I put it out there, it is no longer mine. People can choose to claim it as theirs in whatever way they see fit. I just hope that it adds to people’s lives and helps in some way.
Your work ethic and commitment to inclusivity are admirable. What do you think about LGBTQ+ representation in the music industry and how it could be more inclusive? Can you tell us about your ties to the community and how you plan to use your platform to make a difference?
I’m really excited as we begin to see more stories from queer perspectives being told. We still have ways to go though. I’m hoping that straight/cisgender people can listen to stories told from a queer perspective and will still be able to connect to these universal feelings of love, hate, lust, etc. Queer folks have had to master this skill for years, and I think being able to imagine yourself in someone else’s shoes can really open people’s minds.
You enjoy a close relationship with your fans; what motivates you to connect with your audience on social media? Could you share with our readers a special message or a sweet secret that even your most devoted fans are unaware of?
I ultimately am so appreciative when anyone takes the time out of their day to support what I’m doing in my life. They have busy lives of their own, and I don’t take it for granted when people give me the time of day. I’d let them know that new music is already in the works, and I’m super excited about it.
With the return of live music, are you planning to go on tour again? Is there a dream venue or city where you would like to perform your new music?
I’m eager to get back out there in a safe manner. Everything still feels so uncertain in so many parts of the world, but I’m biting to get back at it. I’m looking forward to some more intimate venues and places to really share some striking moments with listeners.
Apart from the new music, do you have any professional goals or plans that you would like to share with us as we close out 2021?
Since starting a manifestation list at the beginning of this year, I have been able to check some big ones off. It may be best to keep the others private for superstition’s sake, but if I can actualize them, there should be some awesome things to come.
Canada has produced so many great musical gems. What local artists would you recommend we check out from your hometown? What is your favorite thing about your home country that will make us want to hop on a plane right away?
Luca Fogale, Bukola, and Sam Lynch are some amazing local artists that I would check out. I love Vancouver, and I’m proud to call it home. I’d say come for the mountains and the beautiful scenery, but don’t come for the housing prices, haha. And, thanks for having me!
We would like to thank Mathew V for his time and for providing us with all the exclusive details. It’s no exaggeration to say that the moment we heard this newest EP, we felt euphoric on an unimaginable level. Do yourself a favor and listen to The Outer Circle right here!
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Featured Image Source: Mathew V via THP Graphic Design Team
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Khushboo Malhotra works as a freelance journalist, digital marketing & media strategist, and content marketer featured in various global and national media publications and works alongside B2B, B2C, and eCommerce brands. A wide range of her work spans music and entertainment culture, sustainable lifestyle (including sub-niches), and SaaS. She enjoys writing novels and designing screenplays, grooving at concerts, or exploring new fashion and cuisines that tickle her taste buds when she is not working. Have a story? Get in touch: firstname.lastname@example.org