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"The Goodbye Album," Matthew Sonntag 

It’s only natural for a young artist to imitate his idols: We learn by walking in the footsteps of giants.

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Youth is invincible. Or at least it thinks it is. Matthew Sonntag’s debut album, The Goodbye Album, is inescapably caught up with that particular fallacy. In fact, nearly every song on the album was written before Sonntag turned 21. The Goodbye Album is a fond farewell to his teenage years. What it lacks in subtlety it makes up for in heart. Sonntag’s voice is a ragged, torn thing, oscillating wildly between impassioned, throaty bleating and a quiet, breathy whisper. For his age, he’s an accomplished lyricist, blending a reliance on pithy aphorisms about love and leaving (which works) with a slight tendency towards frightful Ginsberg-like logorrhea (which doesn’t). At times he cribs a little too heavily from the playbooks of Conor Oberst and Will Sheff, but it’s only natural for a young artist to imitate his idols: We learn by walking in the footsteps of giants.

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