The Suitcase Junket
“Remember the first day you heard The Suitcase Junket…his songwriting is extraordinary… this is one of the most exciting records I've heard in years.” -Vin Scelsa of Idiot's Delight on WFUV and Sirius/XM
"Armed with vintage 1950s amps and a guitar he salvaged from a dumpster, an old, oversized suitcase he plays with his heel as a bass drum, a baby shoe hitting a gas can, a cook pot, a circular saw blade and a box of bones and silverware for added percussion, he let it rip! In my favorite session of the year, The Suitcase Junket performs 'Earth Apple' from his latest album, Make Time."
- Linda Fahey, NPR’s Favorite Sessions of 2015
The Suitcase Junket will release his Signature Sounds debut, Dying Star, on March 4th. The 7- song E.P. features five songs recorded during the making of Lorenz’s acclaimed 2015 album, Make Time, and two live tracks recorded at Northampton MA’s The Parlor Room. With Dying Star, The Suitcase Junket is poised to make the jump from one of New England's best-kept roots star secrets, to a household name.
Artist, tinkerer, tunesmith, swamp Yankee, Matt Lorenz is a one-man salvage specialist singing into the hollow of a Dumpster guitar, slipping a broken bottleneck onto the slide finger, railing on a box of twisted forks and bones, rocking till every sound is ragged at its edges, till the house is singing back. Then, unplugging all the amps and letting one mountain ballad soar over the raw strings on that guitar.
Every night is a hard-driving, blues-grinding, throat-singing search-and-rescue junket. Sooner or later everything rusts, busts, and gets tossed into the junk heap: iron, bones, leather, hot rods, muskrats, the night, the heart. The goal is to recover it. To waste nothing. To create new ways from old. This is The Suitcase Junket.
Matt Lorenz was raised in Cavendish, Vermont, the son of teachers. He learned to sing by copying his sister Kate. (The siblings are two-thirds of the touring trio Rusty Belle.) Lorenz graduated from Hampshire College in Amherst, Massachusetts, in 2004, having taught himself to throat-sing thanks to a South Indian cooking class. On moving day, he pulled his guitar, filled with mold and worse for wear, from a dorm Dumpster. He fixed it up and started pulling songs out of it. That was the beginning.
The Suitcase Junket is filling rooms and drawing festival crowds all over his native New England and beyond, from Signal Kitchen near the Canadian border to Wisconsin's Mile of Music Festival, from Ireland's pubs to Mountain Jam in the Catskills, from opening nights for Lake Street Dive and Charlie Musselwhite to Mountain Stage in West Virginia. He caught the attention of National Public Radio who chose his video session for "Earth Apple" from his 2015 album Make Time as one of the year's favorite sessions.