A delicious blend of indie, synth-pop, alternative, and hip hop, “Flavors” by Matthew Chaim featuring Jamee Cornelia is pure delight. A sonic affirmation, “Flavors” is fueled by atmospheric synth pads propelling a smooth ride across the glassy waters of Matthew’s effortless vocal delivery. “There’s an attitude on the track of true, truth-telling, and not catering to what people think about you,” says songwriter, artist, and Songcamp founder Matthew Chaim. “A confidence that gives voice to that energy that I think is within all of us–a layer of certainty or assertiveness that I think is healthy to tap into.”
Getting his start as a rapper, Matthew’s singing approach flows thick like honey with embodied, raspy tones that are equal parts sweet and savory. “I had a strong, resonant feeling for the first verse, it flowed out of me really organically. I really like that it was a lyrical snapshot of my life at the time–living in the chaos of LA among the creative whirlwind around me–exciting, but also intense.”
Written in 2019 during a session on his birthday while living in LA, Matthew teamed up with producer and Songcamp member Snacks to build the arrangement. “He has wall-to-wall synths everywhere. We were just playing around getting experimental, which we've always managed to do together.”
Having since moved back to his hometown of Montreal, Canada, Matthew returned to the song but struggled to nail down a second verse worthy to match the first. He finally cracked the code three years later when enlisting rapper, producer, and visual artist Jamee Cornelia, whom he met through Camp Chaos.
“I never really wrote a second verse to it because that first verse felt so true. I wrote something else, but it didn't have the same energy. At one point, I almost put the track out just using the first verse again, copy-pasting it, but then it hit the backburner and I didn't release it. More recently, as the opportunity to put it out came up, I thought of Jamee. And they killed it.”
Matching the vibe flawlessly, Jamee’s approach and tone pairs like the perfect wine. Rapping “I don’t chase, I attract… down to earth but I am smacked… lifted,” Jamee’s verse adds a chill, spiritual tone completing the song with undeniable synergy.
The epitome of easy listening, “Flavors” also has a grounding effect–a fitting coincidence with Matthew having just returned from a three-day silent meditation retreat. “Groundedness was a big theme for me. I was reminded to cultivate it, and let go, versus hanging or clutching onto things.”
Seeking a reset when necessary has proven invaluable to him over the years. On “Flavors,” he alludes to needing to get out of LA to find reprieve in nature. Now, entrenched in web3, Matthew knows the importance of taking a break from the internet and project demands so he can return centered and self-assured. “I feel like some veil of a ‘commotion of life’ melted away for a few days and I'm bringing a more authentic self into the week.”
Having recently closed out the Chaos era of Songcamp with a live Club Chaos event in New York–where they burned the remaining Chaos packs–Matthew and the Songcamp community are hard at work on their next evolution.
As they finalize the design phase for their fourth flagship experiment–a camp that will take place in the fall–they are gearing up to reintroduce the Songcamp brand with a new website currently under construction. With the website, they will also launch their new research arm documenting their findings from the past experiments: Camp Genesis, Camp Elektra, and Camp Chaos.
They are also cooking up “Sessions,” which are a new series where they will group musicians in bands of three for one-off song releases. “We are taking the atomic layer of our huge camp experiments, and bringing them down to one-off releases,” says Matthew. The first “Sessions” volume will include five bands and five songs. Rumor has it, both Matthew and Jamee will be part of the first volume.
Jamee first joined the Songcamp community as a member of the visual team for Camp Chaos and is now active on the music side as well. Based in Atlanta, they are a multi-disciplinary artist, Head of Artist Relations at Glass Protocol, and have been dropping music NFTs since 2021. They recently released their album Art School Dropout, which tackles the subject matter of breaking from societal norms. The result is an album about “crashing out along the way and realigning with your purpose,” says Jamee.
Alongside his work with Songcamp, Matthew continues to create as an independent singer-songwriter as well. With the release of his debut album in 2019, The Mathematics of Nature, Matthew established a distinct style blending key influences throughout his life. Initially inspired by Coldplay, Matthew was drawn to emotive music from a young age. “I really connected to some emotion or intimacy or warmth that came from their songwriting. I was a pretty sensitive kid and that music really resonated with me.” Later, he turned his attention to punchline rap thanks to Childish Gambino, which led to his first musical endeavor, the Youtube series “Mondays in the Bishi.” When he first started traveling to LA for co-writing, he began listening to Bon Iver, and was heavily inspired by their 2016 album 20, A Million. “That album really shaped my inspiration for the whole time I was out in LA, and was the focal point inspiration for the album I released in 2019.”
This summer, he plans to release a series of singles produced by Rabbit, who he worked with on The Mathematics of Nature. Continuing to hone and develop his craft, Matthew’s innate talent and dedication color every endeavor as his palette continues to expand. Matthew sings, “These flavors come easy to me, I’m easy to be.” And we believe it.
HIGH FREQUENCY Volume 1 is a compilation album curated by NOISE, with 16 tracks released on Sound. The album features new songs from artists we believe represent the values of web3 and whose work will be essential to every music NFT collector’s set in the future.
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