by Thomas Bedward June 19, 2020
Ever since childhood, Matthew Bertram has felt a pull towards music. As soon as he learned to play the piano, Matthew was composing music and defining his style, pushing towards something bigger and constantly looking to improve his reach. With a background in classical piano performances, and a penchant for contemporary pop, Matthew’s style has evolved over the past few years, taking lead from the likes of Khalid, Billie Eilish, 30 Seconds to Mars, Seether, The Weeknd, and more, Matthew has become a unique and exciting new talent determined to carve his own path through the modern pop soundscape.
In 2018, Matthew first made his mark with ‘Vivid’, a bold debut record that brought sixteen pop-infused tracks into the spotlight and first announced his sound. Now, he’s back to do it all again, reflecting on a life spent devoted to music with the aptly titled ‘Destiny’.
A powerful independent release, ‘Destiny’ is a more uplifting and upbeat counterpart to the more melancholy sounds of Matthew’s debut, arriving as an almost direct musical sequel that holds firm to the same, involving and emotive nature. Opening with the brilliant ‘Bridges’, the new album starts with a minor key that slowly builds and transitions into a major chord, creating a true and undeniable transition between the two records. It’s a clever and wonderfully nuanced opening, one that brings the listener into Matthew’s world and holds them tightly.
Steeped in emotion and true, human experiences, ‘Destiny’ continues with a deft assembly of life lessons and vibrant melodies, creating an entertaining and wonderfully relatable medley of pieces that will linger well beyond the twelve-track runtime. The title track shines as a classic tale of moving from a small town to the big city, while ‘Lifetime’, ‘Promises’, and ‘Brave’ explore more universal and metaphysical moments that are backed by Matthew’s unmistakable pop style. It’s a magical moment when the emotional weight is balanced perfectly with the glistening piano-driven pop sounds, creating a stylised contrast that emphasises every fine detail and creates an unforgettable musical experience.
As the album continues, Matthew has more emotional messages instore, offering insights into dealing with anxiety in ‘Brave’, and finding self-worth and acceptance in the outstanding ‘Freedom’. Easily one of the most captivating and entrancing pieces, ‘Alive’ arrives as a vibrant celebration of life and rejoicing in throwing caution to the wind, offering a true and unassailable high before the more somber closing tones of ‘Remember’ and ‘Tethered’. Two finals tracks that pay tribute to Matthew’s late father and feeling truly connected to another person, they balance the overall pop aesthetics in perfect form, creating a perfect musical tapestry that will speak to everyone who hears it.
While Matthew himself might consider his music as just a hobby, ‘Destiny’ shows that there is something much greater at play. While his debut album proved that Matthew could write songs steeped in human moments and heavy emotional weight, ‘Destiny’ illustrates his talent for crafting shining pop melodies that can act as the perfect vehicle for his messages. Its a rare and wonderful thing, and something the definitely deserves to be celebrated.
You can stream ‘Destiny’ today on Spotify and Apple Music, as well as the title track on Soundcloud and YouTube.
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