By Andrew Ross (host of Spin This!)
As we hit the final stretch of 2023, I wanted to go back to this past March where the Scottish
artist Brownbear led by singer-songwriter Matthew Hickman, released his 2nd album Demons.
The album came out via Assai Records and was released on CD and on red vinyl, which the
vinyl had a limited run of 300. It has to be one of my favorite albums of 2023, not only is it full of
strong hooks and sweet melodies it’s filled with positivity through a veil of personal struggle.
On Demons, Brownbear is able to weave a tapestry of emotion from upbeat indie pop to
stripped down lofty ballads. Accompanied by impressive backing vocals, these alone deserve
notice, Hickman’s storytelling is at the forefront and really shines throughout. From the
vulnerable “Let Your Guard Down” that sounds very Of Monsters and Men-esque, to the soulful
“Take Your Time”, to the island feel of “Telling Stories” Demons is full of heartfelt honesty and
Song highlights for me on Demons are “Little White Lies”, which is about dealing with the ups
and downs of a toxic relationship. “Spin Another Web” weaves a story about wanting to move
forward and the trust that a relationship is built on, and the album closer, the thumping “Unity”,
where equity and freedom reign.
On Demons, Brownbear vulnerability is evident and delivers an album worth your time and your
ear. Hear Brownbear tracks on my show Spin This! exclusively on Soundwaves.