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About Matt Kivel

Songwriter Matt Kivel got an early start in the world of music, forming indie band Princeton with his twin brother Jesse in 2005 after years of playing together and writing songs. Throughout the 2000's, Kivel was active with Princeton as well as playing guitar in garage pop band Gap Dream, but broke out solo in the early 2010's. The style of his solo material diverged significantly from his role in his various bands, opting for a more subdued, patient approach to songwriting on graceful albums like his 2016 effort Fire On The Plains.

Guitarist/singer/songwriter Matt Kivel was raised in Santa Monica, California. When he and his brother decided to transition their practice of playing music together into an active band, they chose the name Princeton, which was also the name of the street they grew up on. The group relocated to Los Angeles, touring and releasing jaunty indie rock throughout the second half of the 2000's. Around 2011, Kivel quit playing with other bands to focus on his solo material. The first evidence of his work came in the form of some limited-run cassettes, but he truly came into his own with 2013's full-length album Double Exposure, released on the Olde English Spelling Bee label. Kivel's early solo work was more subtle than his previous affiliations, with shimmering ambient synths meeting muted acoustic songwriting and understated vocals. Second album Days of Being Wild, recorded with Palace Brothers member Paul Oldham over the course of the previous summer, saw release on the Woodsist label in 2014. 2016 saw the release of two solo albums, the beautifully raw Janus and Fires on the Plain, a lengthy collection that featured duets with Bonnie "Prince" Billy and Fleet Foxes' Robin Pecknold. Kivel moved around often during this time, relocating from the west coast to Austin, Texas and then to New York. During his time in Austin he wrote and recorded fifth album Last Night In America. ~ Fred Thomas

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