Matthew Dear Struggles With Sobriety on New Song 'Gutters and Beyond'

Avant-pop artist and DJ Matthew Dear has released a new song, “Gutters and Beyond,” from his upcoming album, Preacher’s Sigh & Potion: Lost Album, out June 25th via Ghostly International.

“Gutters and Beyond” begins with a brooding, crackling mix of textural synths and percussion, over which Dear eventually laces a chant-like poem that finds him grappling with sobriety. “There was a time when I was strong. I could take it so very long,” he says, “But desolation has enveloped my mind. I’ll be gone before you know. But one last thing before I go/I will see you yet again.”

In a statement, Dear described “Gutters and Beyond” as “‘sober me’ giving in to ‘drinking me.’” He continued: “I’ve been sober for five years now, but I’ve always gone hot and cold in the past. My type of drinking has always been rather predictable in its unpredictability. What I mean by that is some nights I could have a glass of wine at dinner and go quietly to bed after, and other nights, dinner would wind up lasting two days and I’d be DJ’ing an afterparty for total strangers in a different city. I sought that life out from an early age, and prospered in the accompanied freedoms it often presented me. After a while, though, it took its toll. Rarely in singular moments of clarity, but more in subtle jabs at my ability to maintain a good, productive and balanced life. So ‘Gutters And Beyond’ is really about the struggle, and apparently when I wrote this one, I was throwing in the towel to the addictive personality within.”

Dear originally recorded Preacher’s Sigh & Potion in 2008, but ultimately decided to shelve the album until now. The record was inspired by Emmylou Harris as well as the fingerpicking guitar style Dear’s father liked to use. Dear’s most recent album, Bunny, was released in 2018.

Dear is also preparing to launch a new variety series, The Matthew Dear Show, made in collaboration with his wife Jennifer Dear. The show will offer a mix of music, visuals, and other oddball flourishes, and was largely filmed in the woods near Dear’s Michigan home. The show premiered as a program on Seth Troxler’s Twitch channel, Dream Access Television, and the first segment will arrive on YouTube June 16th at 3 p.m. ET.

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