Album Review: Mathas - Armwrestling Atlas

4 November 2015 | 3:45 pm | Kane Sutton

"It's been a long time coming, but Mathas covers all bases with this album and it has been well worth the wait."

Anyone who was on the ball back when Mathas released his single Doctorshopping in 2013 — which was already a regular setlist feature at that point — knew that should it be an indication that the Perth rapper was working on an album, and it would be something to really look forward to. The resulting record, Armwrestling Atlas, which is Mathas' second full-length, does not disappoint.

A huge supporter of the local scene, Mathas brings to the record a strong roster of fellow local artists including the likes of Ylem, Mei Saraswati, Abbe May, Empty and more. Focusing on a slew of themes including Indigenous issues, substance abuse, emotional development and more, Mathas is thoughtful, direct, and can often be fierce in his lyrical approach (see Free Shit). But other times, and perhaps critically so, he is also empathetic in his delivery and messages, happy to voice his opinion but emphasising the importance of recognising the voices of others and pondering their insights. Sonically, Mathas proves his ability to create a fantastic range of catchy beats and hooks that will keep you engaged throughout the album, and does so with a range of instruments and sounds. It's been a long time coming, but Mathas covers all bases with this album, and it has been well worth the wait.