Matchbox 20 – Bent

First Hit #1: July 22, 2000

The first hit from Matchbox 20, though Rob Thomas has been here before, sees a band that really wants to go adult contemporary. It’s very gentle, Bent, all of the electric guitars blending for something of a wash, and Thomas himself go a bit kinder and gentler. It’s a song about a damaged man trying to find a woman who will repair him, and the result is a song that’s actually quite gentle. It’s not really accurate to say the band started as hard rock, but there used to be some kind of edge to their music. This is a band that’s getting increasingly mellow, and is trying to be sensitive and appealing to a broad cross-section of the market.

The adult contemporary sound kind of dulls the edges, and Matchbox 20 makes a song that kind of blends into the background and doesn’t really push in any real direction. It’s muzak, really, a bit of nonsense to throw on the radio when you don’t want to pay attention.

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2 Responses to Matchbox 20 – Bent

  1. RBerman says:

    Hey look, a rock band! I’ve heard of those, but I didn’t think they still existed by 2000. As you say, they have to dial it down to “adult contemporary” to make it to #1. Still, actual guitars, with power chords and everything.

    This “wounded guy needs your help” song makes a nice counterpoint to yesterday’s “wounded girl won’t accept my help” song. Roy Orbison projected this lovelorn image, and the sensitive men of country and R&B often use it too. It’s easy to get confused about your motives. When you reach out to a wounded person of the other gender, are you acting out of compassion toward the downtrodden, or just looking for an easy mark, someone who will make you feel needed? Do you want to be generous, or just feel generous, and in the process tie someone to yourself? To quote Ben Folds again ( , a different song than yesterday), “Now that I have found someone/ I’m feeling more alone than I ever have before/ She’s a brick/And I’m drowning slowly.” Be careful what you wish for.

  2. Pingback: Creed – With Arms Wide Open | We Are Number Ones

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