Wednesday 15 January 2020
Matthew Sweet had been in bands from the early 80s in his home town of Athens, Georgia, where he collaborated with a certain Michael Stipe and his sister in a band called the Oh-Ok. In 1985 Sweet went solo and signed with Columbia Records for whom he released a couple of albums. His debut Inside garnered critical acclaim but little in the way of sales. In 1989 he released a second album which fared just as badly as the first resulting in his being dropped by Columbia and to compound his woes his wife left him around the same time.
In 1990 he started work on the album which would eventually see the light of day under the title Girlfriend but which was initially titled Nothing Last. The title was changed due to the fact that Sweet wanted to use a picture of a 14 year old Tuesday Weld on the cover. Weld, those permission was sought for the use of the image, was in middle age at this time and although had no objection to the picture being used she did have reservation of the connotations around the use of the picture and the title and so Sweet changed it.
On it's release the album sold extremely well in the US and gave the artist the break he had been seeking. The theme of relationships in all their guises and Sweet's honest confessional lyrics struck a chord with the record buying public and critics alike.
From the first chord of the album's opening track, Divine Intervention I was hooked, the guitar sound has a very late 60s psychedelic feel to it and when it comes back in all to briefly after the false ending it never fails to give me shivers. Absolutely wonderful stuff that should have been a single.
Matthew Sweet - Divine Intervention