Matthew O’Neill spent a lot of times in the woods, first as a kid growing up in Pennsylvania and then in his late teens and twenties living in national forests. That isolated feeling is all over Campfire Cook, O’Neill’s latest record. The fact that it was recorded in a cabin, deep in the woods, just adds to the outdoors vibe.
That’s not to say it’s all acoustic guitars and campfire sing-alongs, but the record is quite contemplative, even on a seemingly noisy jam like “Don’t Speak”. It’s a solid effort, but with some songs standing out a lot easier than others (“Down on the Beaches” and “Mastodon,” for example, sound a bit out of place), but lyrically O’Neill is impressive throughout.
Admittedly, Campfire Cook is and eclectic collection of songs that are not for everyone, but with an interesting voice and a lot to say, the album is bound to find an audience.
Matthew O’Neill – Campfire Cook/9 tracks/Lone Pine Records/2015