I don’t know why Jonah can’t seem to settle down with a band, but despite the number of people he has worked with and the amount of adaptation that requires, he has managed to impress in a number of different genres. This album is more solo-acoustic than New End Original or Far, but it is a prime example of the quality that goes into Jonah Matranga’s music endeavors.
The beginning of the entire Visitor album starts out with an almost cliché feedback intro, but it doesn’t feel tacky in the context of the song. The feedback sound reappears throughout the rest it in appropriate parts as it builds up emotionally. I wouldn’t have picked a different song to start out with, though; it’s a great example of what you’ll be hearing in the rest of the album. “Bitte Ein Kuss” picks things up a bit, and introduces the drum machine, known as Are Too for aesthetic reasons. “But It Was Close” has similar instrumentation to the opening track, but with a piano coming in near the end to help build up the ending.
“Smile” almost stands out too much on this album. It’s a great song, but it’s the only blatantly “happy” song on the album. It’s the only thing that notably breaks up the flow of the entire album, but if you have to do that on an album, this is how it’s done. Are Too comes back for drum machine duty on “Perfect Pair” as well, and is accompanied by an interesting lo-fi acoustic guitar track. “Candle Song” is another acoustic track like “But It Was Close” or “Why Are We Fighting”; one of the less notable songs on the album, but not a track to skip.
“Yr Letter” appears to be a fan favorite, and possibly the emotionally strongest song on the album. It’s also one of the few songs on this album that sounds better live (There’s quite a powerful rendition on Jonah’s CD/DVD There’s A Lot In Here), but the studio version isn’t lacking much. “Visitor” is the only track I don’t like much on the album; it’s short, and there are noises in the background that aren’t particularly musical, though they aren’t too distracting. The lyrics are interesting, but short enough to make you wonder if it was added for the sake of a longer track list.
Next comes my personal favorite song from the album, “Softbelly”, which has the most appealing chilled-out guitar playing on the album. The final track, “Sixes”, isn’t too far behind in that category, either. The outtro to this song would have made a great ending to just about any album, but it finishes this album particularly well, like you have reached the end of a journey, and if you listened to Visitor from start to finish, you have.