This is a little prologue to to Matisyahu’s new album Spark Seeker which I will post a full review of soon. This for now is the story of how we get to the new Album over the last year or so.
Matisyahu’s new album Spark Seeker certainty embodies a new style of music for him and a new place in his Jewish world view. Ever since the “Beard Incident” on December 13 of last year, we fans have been holding our breath waiting for the new record to be released this last Tuesday! Is Matisyahu still Jewish or has he sold out to the hiphop scene and forgotten his roots. The reason I loved him so much to begin with is because he was a shinning example of someone who can be come famous and still hold to very religious values. He was a rapper in black Hissidic garb with a full beard but he didn’t think of himself as a novelty, in his mind he was really a reggae artist and that made people really take a look at the things he was saying in his music and in someways it gave a lot of glory to God Himself. His path was not just about being an Evangelist for Judaism but to encourage people to discover their spirituality no matter where it is he even did a two songs with Christian band POD (Roots in Stereo and Strength of my Life).
So he shaved his beard, then he said through Twitter and Facebook “to those of you being cool thanks keep being cool, to those of you who are confused. I went to Mitzva and Shool this morning at 6 am just like yesterday morning.” But what did that mean? He promised us a new year full of the music of rebirth. With that we got the annoucnement of Spark Seeker Matis’ fourth studio album which was released this month. But fans and Jewish fans in particular remained skeptical. Next Matis is spotted with blonde hair… and finally to round things off, he stopped wearing a yamaka.
On June 6th we got our first look at the new style on the record when Matis posted a sneak peak to youtube of I believe in Love. Sure, Sunshine was released before this as a single, but Sunshine was nothing new, Matis has been performing that in his live shows since 2010. I personally fell in love with I Believe in Love after hearing it a few times.
At the same time we got another statement from matis saying “To My Fans- I will try to write a couple of ideas and thoughts, but I prefer to speak in my native language, the language of the soul, Music. So I will preface this piece by asking that before prescribing judgement to some pictures, please wait and listen to my new record “Spark Seeker” from start to finish. The record is infused with both Jewish and universal inspiration, as it is a reflection of my inner landscape over the past 2 years of its making. From visions of the Bal Shem Tov to Kabbalah references, prayers in Hebrew and stories in Yiddish, this record was both a spiritual and reflective journey full of transition and growth.”
This post felt more like an apology for changing his mind on the teaching about the beard representing God’s mercy and shaving it and begging the fans to listen to the new album and they would understand if only they listen!
So, I kept my mind open and when Spark Seeker Released I was thoroughly Surprised!