Scene Here: Songs Aloft

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The creaky floorboards cry out when Tom Matherly shifts his weight. He rocks from one heel to the other in his tan boots, staring down at the frayed red rug while he twists the tuning keys on his vintage electric guitar. He’s pausing his set list to play “The Man Who Sold The World” as a tribute to David Bowie, but this guitar is more than 40 years old, and it doesn’t hold its tuning like it used to.

Maybe the temperature is to blame — this upstairs loft space at the Montague Bookmill is mostly warm and cozy, but it suffers the occasional whoosh of outside chill as latecomers arrive to this CD release party. Matherly, 28, who lives just around the corner and performs his folk-rock psychedelia as Fissure Cat, has played one show here previously, and plans to start performing monthly in this intimate, book-crammed space.

It’s a small audience tonight. About a dozen listeners sit on comfy couches and chairs in the dim, warm light, sipping drinks carried up from the Lady Killigrew Cafe downstairs. But once Matherly is in tune, and launches into his Bowie cover, it’s easy to settle in and enjoy some songs, enveloped by the rich, papery smell of old printed pages.

— Hunter Styles, hstyles@valleyadvocate.com

Hunter Styles

Author: Hunter Styles

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