Honky Tonk Luminary Matt Hillyer at His Finest on Forthcoming Album Bright Skyline

>Veteran singer-songwriter and honky tonk luminary, Matt Hillyer, is at his finest on his forthcoming album Bright Skyline.  One of the many genuine articles that call Dallas-based State Fair Records home, Hillyer’s journey from rockabilly roots to western swing, outlaw country, and traditional honky-tonk country steal the show on these eleven vibrant tracks.  In Hillyer’s words, the record is the natural successor to his revered 2022 solo album, Glorieta.

Matt Hillyer

I’ve been in a songwriter group for four years, so I just kept cranking songs out, more so than I ever have in my life.  I just wanted to keep it going, pick up right where we left off last time, and not let too much time pass.”

Bright Skyline will be released on June 21st, but first fans will come to discover and appreciate Hillyer’s comedic skills on the album’s first single “Moving Away” on April 19th. Fans can get the new album in advance of its release by clicking the pre-order link here. https://statefairrecords.myshopify.com/collections/pre-orders
 
Listen to any Matt Hillyer album, or catch one of his shows, and you’ll hear an artist deep in his element, pushing a lifetime of musical influences to the limit yet always sounding authentically like himself. Bright Skyline showcases a range fine-tuned over three decades playing Texas dance halls and listening rooms. Hillyer returned to the dance floor on Bright Skyline with producer John Pedigo of The O’s, who has also produced works from the Vandoliers and the Old 97s.  This creative fusion proves itself, yet again, churning out another gold standard in honky tonk swing.  As a songwriter, Hillyer has long been revered for quality storytelling and contagious melodic hooks.  The first single “Moving Away” is a perfect opener to the grander show, a tale every single one of us knows and has lived, or will live, at least once in our lifetimes.  Hey, somebody had to say it!  The album is chock-full of that breezy Hillyer signature style like on “What Are You Doing Now?” co-written with friend Max Stalling, and “Did She Ever Want To Live Like This.” Hillyer also takes listeners all the way back to his musical origins in rockabilly, the cornerstone of his musical journey, on the song “If I Didn’t Have You.” The song’s swampy percussion and guitar provide the backdrop to a stunning range of lead vocals from Hillyer.
 
If Hillyer’s voice sounds familiar, it should.  For 23 years, Hillyer fronted legendary honky-tonk band Eleven Hundred Springs, touring the world and releasing more than a dozen albums. Eleven Hundred Springs may have set the standard for swingin’ Texas country outfits, but Hillyer always had more to offer—which Bright Skyline highlights time and again.  “With Bright Skyline I want to tour as much as possible. I want to keep myself open to all the different genres that I can actually do, just to keep myself on my toes, and be able to do any and all of it for any of my shows. That’s what I want to do.”  Catch Matt Hillyer’s album release show at the Kessler Theater in Dallas on June 22nd.

About Shauna "WhiskeyChick" Castorena

Shauna "WhiskeyChick" Castorena is a freelance writer for both Country Music News and Country Music On Tour. Want to collab on some content? Email me. Want my rates for commercial promo work outside of music? Get them right here.