Pop troubadour Matthew Koma knows exactly how to get to the heart of the matter with his music, lyrics and performance. His fantastic acoustic live session of "Years" is a wonderful example of that. The original version of the song with Alesso is a massively soaring dancefloor romp, but on this new rendition Koma strips away all the bombast to emphasize the song's powerful emotional core and bittersweet melancholy that lingers throughout the track.
After working with dance music artists like Alesso and Zedd, Koma has become the go-to melody maker for many DJs and producers. There's good reason for that. Koma has the ability to give any big and happening dance tune a richly melodic hook that is memorable. And as is the case with any proper hook, it's a melody that works well in any type of production and this acoustic version of "Years" is solid proof of that.
Inspired by classic singer/songwriters like Bruce Springsteen and Elvis Costello, Koma explained to me in an interview earlier this year that he has a very distinct point of view when it comes to songwriting. "I write about things that I know are sincere and that I can speak about from a real place," he says. "I feel that's really the only way for me to connect with people. [Music] needs to come from an honest place."
Working with EDM artists has helped Koma to further tune his songwriting skills. "The electronic dance music world is so track driven," he says. "There's so much focus on the production that when it comes to songwriting it is even more about finding that simple sentiment and tapping into it." (Alleso "Years" featuring Matthew Koma is available on Beatport now.)