On debut LP ‘Bad Contestant’, Matt Maltese allowed humour to cushion the topics of heartbreak and loneliness that stalk his songwriting. Second album ‘Krystal’ held a more direct approach, his tongue beginning to loosen from his cheek in the process; it’s a shift that continues here and lands Maltese on familiar ground for the most part. The EP’s title track reveals some imaginative arrangements and instrumentation at play serving as a welcome break from his loungey piano sequences, locking into a melancholic groove. Likewise, ‘Queen Bee’ is a pleasing slice of summery pop with its crunchy drums and ‘90s alt-rock chord changes that manages to wedge an eerie nursery rhyme into its midsection. The ‘Madhouse EP’ contains some real gems but they’re somewhat overshadowed by the songwriter’s tried-and-tested formula.
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