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  • Writer's pictureStevie Connor

Award-Winning Blind, Indigenous Hip-Hop Artist, Mattmac, Releases Collaborative Studio Album 'All Eyes On Us'


Photo Credit: Clarize Ariza.

Decorated Indigenous artist, producer, writer, and multi-instrumentalist, Mattmac, is known for his skillful musical craftsmanship that reaches across the spectrum of Hip-Hop and its sub-genres. His dedicated attention to sonic detail and lyrical authenticity have garnered international acclaim, leading the young artist to becoming one of the most sought after producers in the Canadian music landscape today. Mattmac's remarkable range of artistic talents allow him to communicate relatable themes of overcoming hardship, mental health, and appreciation for community in both lyric and sound. Following the global success of his debut and sophomore albums 20/20 (2020) and Blurred Visions (2022), Mattmac showcases his ever expanding musical abilities on his highly collaborative third album, "All Eyes On Us".

Prior to the release of his debut album, Mattmac had already collaborated with Grammy and JUNO Award-winning artist Nelly Furtado, performing at events such as We Day and Indigenous Day Live. Four years into his music career, Mattmac has achieved significant milestones including winning the 2023 CBC Searchlight contest, accumulating over 30 million streams across various platforms, and making national appearances across Canada in Billboard, CBC Music, Exclaim!, and other prominent outlets. Twice reaching #1 on the Indigenous Music Countdown, Mattmac's music has received airplay across Canada and the US, with features on CBC Radio, Virgin Radio, and SiriusXM. His numerous awards include the Broadcast Dialogue Emerging Artist Award, Rap/Electronic Album Of The Year at the Summer Solstice Indigenous Music Awards, Album of the Year at the International Indigenous Hip-Hop Awards, and Canada’s Walk Of Fame RBC’s Emerging Musician Award. A mainstay on editorial playlists throughout the world, Mattmac curated Spotify's Indigenous playlist in June 2024.

"All Eyes On Us" is a highly collaborative, meticulously crafted project that features fifteen Indigenous artists from across North America and sonic soundscapes that span the entire genre of Hip-Hop. The title of the album is a nod to the confidence, growth, and maturation the artist feels both musically and personally as he reveals his career-spanning journey to accept his place in the spotlight. Across eighteen songs, Mattmac and his all-star collaborators share tales of resilience, growth, community, affirmation, and pride. "'All Eyes On Us' is about accepting where I'm at. It took me a long time to get comfortable in the industry, and I'm proud to be able to stand with my community and say look at us. I'm never going far from where I came from". As a creative nod to the power of community, the colourful album artwork features the artist surrounded by his collaborators. Notably, the cover also includes braille in acknowledgement of the blind community, and was designed by Nehiyaw artist, Chris Chipak. Entirely self-produced, Mattmac's third studio album introduces his unique take on Hip-Hop's numerous sub-genres, both the styles themselves and their regional influences.

The lead track from the album, "Still Got Love", is a collaboration with Alberta rapper Toosick, centred on the appreciation the artists have for the places they grew up - Mattmac on the Garden Hill First Nation in Manitoba, and Toosick in Edmonton's inner city. The melodic, mid-tempo track features both live and sample guitar on top of a Trap beat that ebbs and flows as the artists perform their verses. A song that discusses the hardships their community faces, positive encouragement towards the future, and the unending fondness for the communities that raised them, Mattmac raps “I just want to come back home and show all my cousins we made it”, his favourite lyric from the song, as he signifies that no matter how far away from the Garden Hill Reservation he goes it will always be a part of him.

Released in the Spring of 2024, "Imposters" is an upbeat collaboration between Mattmac and one of the leading female Indigenous Hip-Hop artists in the United States, Stella Standingbear. Blending vibrant Pop melodies with Trap rhythms, "Imposters" is an empowering anthem that resonates personally and communally. Reflecting on their challenges in the spotlight, the artists navigate feelings of self-doubt with finesse, set against a dynamic backdrop of radio static and infectious beats. "Blue Checks", the only solo performed track on the album, is an uptempo Aggressive-Trap style featuring heavy bass and a variety of different sounds. Written, performed, and recorded in a hotel room, the song is about the clout associated with the blue checkmark and the ability for anyone to be able to access it. Calling the interlude, "Lights, Camera" a pivotal part of the album, Mattmac strategically placed the track between two songs he released music videos for - "Imposters", and "Come Thru", offering a unique glimpse into his creative mind, while also pulling the curtains back on his experience as a blind person. Noting that a camera offers a visual experience, the artist endeavoured to share the visual medium through sound. Incredibly detailed and crystal clear sonically, Mattmac invites listeners to hear the process of filming; setting up shots, the sounds of Winnipeg in the background, the flashes of the camera and music being played on fuzzy speakers, in a clever take on the saying "lights, camera, action", which instead results in "lights, camera, music".

"All Eyes On Us" unveils the unending skill and creativity of a prolific artist who is empowered by his community. Drawing upon his own experiences while inviting artists to theirs, Mattmac's third studio album is a highly relatable, innovative, and original project that showcases his artistic growth, attention to detail, and musical ambition. Across eighteen tracks that offer something for everyone, Mattmac's "All Eyes On Us" solidifies his place as one of the leading Canadian artists in Hip-Hop today, who refuses to lose sight of his community.

Featured Artists:

Okema (Meadow Lake, SK)

Jessa Sky (Edmonton, AB)

Toosick (Edmonton, AB)

Mariame (Chibougamau, QC)

CJAY GRiZ (Cree Nation of Chisasibi, QC)

Stella Standingbear (Utah)

Rezcoast Griz (Arizona)

Nowujalo (Regina, SK)

Violent Ground (Kawawachikamach, QC)

Drives The Common Man (Toronto, ON)

Dakota Bear (Vancouver, BC)

Drezus (Calgary, AB)

Rex Smallboy (Vancouver, BC)

destroykasmin (Arizona)

Cayden Carfrae (Winnipeg, MB)

Mattmac Show Dates

July 5, 2024 - Northern Lights Festival Boréal at Grace Hartman Amphitheatre - Sudbury, ON

July 6 & 7, 2024 - Mariposa Folk Festival - Orillia, ON - Tickets

July 9, 2024 - Sunset Concert Series - Toronto, ON

July 15, 2024 - Southeast Child & Family Services Ceremony, Canadian Museum for Human Rights, Winnipeg, MB

July 25, 2024 - Annual Treaty Days - Berens River, MB

September 20, 2024 - Beyond the Beat, Music of Resistance and Change at the Canadian Museum for Human Rights - Winnipeg, MB




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