“Life happens.” This is what Matthew Brammer, brain child of Agony By Default, told me in a private conversation over social media. We have exchanged messages back and forth ever since his work was featured on our first indie metal radio episode. As cliche’ as that saying is, Matthew is right. Life happens to all of us and just when we want to take a right, life takes a sharp left.
“The Sorrow In Your Eyes” reflects back on a difficult time in my life a couple of years ago where my wife and I’s business took a downturn, we had a few bumps in our relationship, and I was starting to question myself as an artist and musician as well,” remarks Matthew. “Everything just kind of hit at once, and often when that kind of stuff happens, you start to feel like you’re the cause of everything shitty around you…you question your place in this world and your own self-worth.”
The track discussed is reproachful yet hopeful. The melancholy of the acoustic guitars combined with the haunting yearning of the leads offer an emotional backdrop to Matthew’s screams of lament as the track plods forward like a solitary soldier’s death march. The track emits true emotion born from the trials and tribulations of a life put through its paces. As a listener, I feel this and this is the true strength of the track. The album promises to offer this in spades.
“…the end result was an American melodeath album that has pretty heavy early Gothenberg influences. I think that’s really prevalent in a few songs, including “The Sorrow In Your Eyes,” comments Matthew. “Musically, I took the foundation of what I started on my first album Genocide for Survival, and added some new things and tried to evolve. Lyrically, I looked back into my past, but also wanted to convey a strength, a hope for the future and a will to conquer adversity.”
The album Refleksjoner, Norwegian for reflections, is a contemplative album ruminating on past mistakes and success with a mind for future improvement. The album in question is being released this Friday (October 12th). At Super Metal World, we anxiously await its release. If the lead single is any indicator, Matthew is ready to deliver on this album.
“This album took far longer to write/record than anything I’ve ever done. Usually I’m able to bang things out in a couple of months, but this one took a little over 5 months. I took a bit more time to pay attention to songwriting, song structure, and additional guitar work, as well as a better mix overall. I’m always trying to improve as a musician and songwriter, and not gonna lie, there’s been times where I look back on past stuff and have some things I would have changed. I wanted to have no regrets about these songs, and I think I accomplished that finally. I’m really, really proud of this release.”
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Ty is the co-creator of Super Metal World and co-host of Super Metal World Podcast. His favorite metal subgenres are thrash, doom, and death. You can find him playing RPGs on the Switch or PS4 in his spare time, as well as exploring the Pacific Northwest.