Matthew Good has never been one to mince words, so it's no surprise that 2009's Vancouver is not a flattering love letter to the "great" Canadian city he lives in.
A commentary on the worldwide known nightmare that is the Downtown Eastside, Good spits with venom and genuine confusion as to how a city can be so ignorant & cold towards such an important issue. His lyrics are always thoughtfully beautiful and well composed, however it's the music here that suffers a bit. Good resorts to standard rock structures, which might just be him recuperating from the deeply personal and disturbing album before this. Still as rock goes, it's a lot more solid and smart compared to some of the other acts trying to be half as good as this is. Consider this an honest travel brochure that'll bite your head off.
3½ invisible ghettos of privilege and grief out of 5
Songs Of Note: Volcanoes; A Silent Army In Trees