"Exile on Mainstream" (Atlantic; 2007)

Reviewed by Jeff Rogers


It might say "Reviewed by Jeff Rogers" above, but I think we've all reviewed a Matchbox Twenty song by either cranking up the radio or changing it to another station. I had to look twice at the release date: 2007? Could that be right? It feels like these songs have been playing for the past ten years! But, I looked again and the music has already been released and it fits into the modern rock sound seamlessly.

This dual disc is a compilation of six new songs on one disc and all of their hits on the second disc. It's pretty clever marketing: if you want new Matchbox Twenty songs, you can listen to just one disc and if you want the familiar sound, pop in the other one. I guess it's better than a greatest hits package with some leftover stuff at the end.

The newest songs are all right. They have a good sound and anybody wanting some more Matchbox Twenty won't be disappointed. You know most of the hits on disc two and it's nice to have them all combined onto one. It makes for an easy play list.

Rob Thomas seemed to step from out of bounds on Matchbox Twenty when he did that stint with Carlos Santana and recorded the smash single "Smooth" when the Grammys were Latin flavored, I think it was 1999 that he really shined the brightest. If you don't have any Matchbox Twenty then this is the best way to get them;  new songs with all the hits combined.

Matchbox Twenty: Rob Thomas – lead vocals, piano, guitar (1995–present); Kyle Cook – lead guitar, vocals, banjo(1995–present); Paul Doucette – rhythm guitar, vocals (2007–present); drums, percussion, vocals (1995–2007); Brian Yale – bass guitar (1995–present); Ryan MacMillan – drums, percussion (2007–present); Matt Beck – rhythm guitar, keyboards, mandolin (live performances; 1999–present); Former members: Adam Gaynor – rhythm guitar, vocals (1995–2005).

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Rating Guide:

A classic. This record will kick your ass.

Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

So-so. You've heard better.

Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.

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Revised: 02 Aug 2020 16:31:48 -0400 .