With two full length albums and two split albums under their belt, Tiny Moving Parts is poised to win the hearts of music lovers everywhere. Minnesota indie/rock musicians Dylan Mattheisen (guitar/vocals), Matthew Chevalier (bass/vocals), and Billy Chevalier (drums) have forged a place in music with songs that make you sing out loud. Their first album, This Couch Is Long & Full Of Friendships, hooked listeners with solid musicianship and note-perfect vocals, but it’s the newest release, Pleasant Living, that truly lets them shine. Each song spotlights the considerable talents of each band member while showing just how much they love what they do.
The family connection cannot be denied. Matthew and Billy are brothers and Dylan is their cousin. They grew up together, spending enough time together over the years to become more like three brothers. The shared bloodline works well for Tiny Moving Parts, because it removes any pretentiousness and leaves them focused on the collective vision for their music. They all want the same thing. Billy explains, “I think that helped, just because we were together so much. When we were bored, we would get together and play music in high school. We started in junior high and have really been playing together since.” Tiny Moving Parts can count on each other because they have always been able to. Sibling rivalry is not an issue. Dylan, Billy, and Matthew can disagree at times, but it is all in good fun. Issues are resolved with a reciprocal respect and genuine affection for each other. After all, they do have to see each other at family reunions.
Life is supposed to have ups and downs. No one promises smooth sailing and the song, “Clouds Above My Head” describes the journey we all have to make. Lyrics say, “I guess when you’re a kid stuck inside a candy store/You’re bound to get sick of everything/I have learned that signs for good luck are never good signs/They higher your hopes up/Just to see you die inside.” Who has not felt like they had life in the palm of their hand, just to come crashing down to Earth when events take a turn for the worst? It is essential to take life in stride, and roll with the punches, because there will always be bumps in the road.
Happy is being busy. One glance at their Facebook photos shows three guys who embrace every part of touring with the same zeal they demonstrate in their music. Their enthusiasm bubbled over when describing how they feel about taking Tiny Moving Parts on the road. They all talked at once, smiling and laughing at the experiences they have shared and listing everything they still look forward to. Life on the road is not a hardship to Tiny Moving Parts, but an adventure with new and exciting things to come. They do not even mind the long van rides between shows, because it brings them to where they belong—on the stage in your town. After their current 43 days on tour in the United States, Tiny Moving Parts will return home, then leave a few days later for their first UK/European tour.
There is so much more. I have seen Tiny Moving Parts perform live before and I am always intoxicated by the vibe they create—even before taking the stage. People came from far and wide to see the show in Cleveland, packing the venue with a crowd that was ready to have fun. No one stands on the sidelines. Everyone is included as the fans sang louder than the band and danced in every corner of the overflowing room. The family warmth of Tiny Moving Parts invites you in and each person (even the usually stoic venue staff) could not stop themselves from foot tapping, head bobbing, and humming along with music designed for all of us. Signed to Triple Crown Records, Tiny Moving Parts is definitely on the way up and I look forward to seeing them break through to the next level. You can read more about their music in our review of Pleasant Living.