The new track by J.L. Matthews, “Long Shot” proves to be a cohesive, logically progressing work, flowing from hell to heaven, dark to light, or more personally, from Matthews’ ode to the people who have been doubted and shunned, and told that they could never be what they wanted to be. He says that this song is for the long shots. Those, who against all odds, proved everyone wrong. He took his cues from fighters like Jay-Z, Lady Gaga, Bill Gates and Walt Disney, who put their backs to the wall and grinded their way to the top in the face of all adversities.
J.L. Matthews personalizes this theme as he shows how he has bettered himself since his previous 9-track offering, entitled “Eight”, paralleling his struggles to make music true to his heart, in the light of all, or any pressures that come from external sources.
Ultimately, “Long Shot” not only works as a coherent narrative of making it against all odds, but also as a testament to J.L. Matthews versatility as an artist. This song also marks a significant improvement in the complexity and depth of the production. Not to mention, the repetitive keyboard motif, which is extremely hypnotizing.
This song, in particular, showcases Matthews’ ability to subtly use wordplay, which, in my opinion, is more effective than the in-your-face punch-lines of certain rappers. It’s refreshing to see an artist that solves the puzzle of creating songs radio-type catchiness that also contain substance.
Not only does the keyboard and bass-backed beat force you to nod your head, but the story is also as personal as it gets. “I’ve been on this grind for a long time. I’ve been getting mine for a long time. They don’t want to see me on the go, man,” is how J.L. Matthews launches his storyline.
It will make people realize that “Long Shot” is not an attempt to gain the attention of a mainstream audience that may not have noticed him otherwise, but to get across his message across, as well as uncover his body of meaningful, and artful work.
Put simply, “Long Shot” is a track that shows off all the talent that the last album was starting to bring to the public eye. In stellar fashion, with a confident flow and some rather tightly constructed verses laid neatly over the top of a searching beat J.L. Matthews confirms that he is an outstanding storyteller.
On this track, Matthews is firing on all cylinders, providing a tight rap song that is both accessible and very intricately written. Though he might not be king yet, it’s only a matter of time. J.L. Matthews is filled to the brim with potential, and the sky is the limit.