Local Vibes
March 10, 2006
Mattafix Continues to Climb Music Charts

The creativity of young Vincentian musician Marlon Roudette has spread further afield than his London base through a massive month-long tour of 23 venues in Europe. Mattafix’s debut tour as a headline band culminated two weekends ago in Paris having taken in nine European countries, including five where the band’s single ‘Big City Life’ has reached No. 1 in the music charts. {{more}} It is still currently No 1 in Switzerland and Germany for the fourth week running and topped the charts in Italy for 6 weeks. Having received gold records in Italy, Austria and Switzerland, Mattafix is heralded by ukmusic.com as “the first band to have had such an impact on the European charts with a debut single in the past ten years.”

After signing to EMI Europe in July 2005, Mattafix released their debut album ‘Signs of a Struggle”last October which is climbing the album charts steadily. The title refers to the struggle against imperialism in all its forms, and what Roudette refers to as the “tyranny of the super powers.”

While music critics and promoters struggle to define Mattafix’s style, everyone from promoters to listeners agrees that it’s a new sound which crosses genre boundaries.

According to Manchester UK music reviews, “Marlon Roudette and Preetesh Hirji (aka Mattafix) have been described as the next Portishead or Massive Attack, and it’s easy to see why. Their brand of dub-heavy grooves and cool songs has become a talking point ever since single, ‘Big City Life’, hit record shops last year.”

Roudette, who grew up in Penniston, believes that creativity in all its forms is a force for positive social change.

Like other creative artists and poets from the Caribbean based in the diaspora, Roudette is passionate about his island home. He draws constantly on island life experience for inspiration and flies the Vincy flag on his steel pan stand for all performances. He also promotes St. Vincent in countless radio and TV interviews throughout Europe and not least of all through his songs, many of which are sung partly in dialect.

The single ‘Big City Life’ spreads a message about the value of genuine friendship in the big city and has struck a universal chord, rising to No. 1 in five countries so far, with venues in those countries being sold out.

“To see European crowds in Munich reciting the words of his songs and even getting the pronunciation of Vincy dialect was an amazing and very moving sight,” says Marlon’s mother, Vonnie Roudette, who accompanied Mattafix on the first part of their tour.

One of the many highlights of the tour was an outdoor performance at Turin, amidst the magnificent setting of snow-covered mountains, the site of the winter Olympics.

Mattafix’s music is not as yet distributed in the Caribbean. However, arrangements are being made to have ‘Signs of a Struggle’ on sale in St Vincent from April.

For more information contact Sean Williams at Music Center. To contact Marlon Roudette visit mattafix.com.