Progressive metalcore outfit S'efforcer opens up and embarks on a dynamic, immersive, and emotional journey as they mourn the loss of a loved one in their newest single, "Stubborn Hero."
Many have their reasons for why they want to pursue their dreams. For S'efforcer, their musical dreams materialized in the middle of the summer within the confines of a tiny hot bedroom. Not knowing where that dream of music and songwriting would take them, they pushed forward with whatever willpower they had left to sustain them. While times were tough, lineups have changed, and the point of direction has altered since then, S'efforcer still stands tall.
“I didn't have the best relationship with my dad. To say I have regrets is an understatement, and I think that shows in the song. Something my dad was always proud of, even when our relationship was strained, was that I was pursuing this dream of music. I guess even in the months leading up to his passing where there was a divide of over 2 years between us, he was telling people how proud of me he was. When I learned that, it was a lot to swallow, and I knew that if I didn't address it somehow, those feelings and that sorrow would eat me alive. ”
While the journey has not been easy, no road to being a band ever is, S'efforcer have pulled themselves from beneath the struggles and have emerged victorious despite the setbacks they have faced throughout. Though all have grown, changed, and have been influenced by a world that has been severely redefined by its social, cultural, and political climate, S'efforcer have found a way to mold these matters together for a common goal to build a better world through music.
But while the change begins with us, sometimes things happen that we can not control that fall from within our grasp. When we lose someone we love, that pain can be intense and often consume us with grief and misunderstanding. When facing those demons in music, it's facing something that hurts one the most internally and letting that out for others to hear. S'efforcer comes to face that and more in their latest single "Stubborn Hero." Immersive, aggressive, and mentally captivating, "Stubborn Hero" is emotionally stripped down and poignant in a way we have never seen the band before.
What started your band S'efforcer?
S'efforcer started as a group of kids in a tiny room very reminiscent of Harry Potter's bedroom, in mid-summer with a tiny AC. We were all still finding our place in life, we were definitely a lot younger and naive, and had a lot more angst that drove us between day-to-day life, songwriting, and our overall aim as a band. Those were pretty tumultuous times for us, honestly. A lot - and I mean A LOT - has changed since then, between lineup changes and new directions in our sound, we've grown a lot. I guess S'efforcer really started out as more of an emotional outlet than an actual band, we were still finding ourselves as people just as much as trying to find our sound. Life is funny like that.
What are your music influences? How did they make their way into your latest single, "Stubborn Hero?" There is this bellicose hardcore nature that shines through the melancholic lyricism of this track.
Quay Jones: Honestly, we would all give completely different answers to this question if asked individually. I think the biggest thing to be said about our influences, is the lack thereof. We're all pretty open to different genres and different bands, so to pinpoint any one particular artist would be difficult, but to name a few specifically for each of us they would have to be Loathe, Silent Planet, and Counterparts.
That being said, I think we're all more so influenced by the social, emotional, and political climate of the world around us. We all just want a better, more compassionate world - I like to think that that's true to speak for just about everybody, but all of us as individual people are particularly passionate about personal growth and what it takes to achieve it.
What was the creative process like making "Stubborn Hero" compared to other singles in the past?
Quay Jones: Difficult - very difficult. From an instrumental standpoint, it's one of the few songs on the record and in our catalog where we were all very active and involved in the process. A lot of our material is initially derived from our guitarist Bryce, but in the case of "Stubborn Hero", it was definitely more of a group effort.
Lyrically and vocally, typically Quay writes more methodically. This song was more like spilling emotions onto paper. It was very hard to write in that way.
I want to dive a bit into the lyrics of your new track. I know this talks of you mourning the loss of a loved one that was important to you. What made you want to channel that into your latest song?
Quay Jones: My father passed away in early 2021. He was a great, great man, but much like a lot of people, he struggled with his own demons. I had recently lost my grandfather as well just a month prior, so I was very overwhelmed with grief at the time.
I didn't have the best relationship with my dad. To say I have regrets is an understatement, and I think that shows in the song. Something my dad was always proud of, even when our relationship was strained, was that I was pursuing this dream of music. I guess even in the months leading up to his passing where there was a divide of over 2 years between us, he was telling people how proud of me he was. When I learned that, it was a lot to swallow, and I knew that if I didn't address it somehow, those feelings and that sorrow would eat me alive. So I channeled all of those feelings and all of those things I never got to say into "Stubborn Hero." As a way of release, and also as a form of mourning.
I just wanted to give him the song he never got to hear in this life. "Stubborn Hero" is just as much for him as it was for me. I never got any closure. That being said, I just want to address the reader directly really quick:
If there is somebody in your life that you don't have the best relationship with right now - Mother, Father, Sibling, Grandmother, whatever - please, if nothing else, just tell them that you love them. The divide isn't worth sustaining. There is no heavier weight than that of the regret for the things you never got to say. Life is ever so fragile, and far too fickle.
What have you taken from this latest release that was not present in your previous work?
Quay Jones: I think it's safe to say that we've always been an emotional band, but the amount of people that have expressed understanding and found comfort in this song, in particular, has definitely opened up a new dynamic for us in terms of what we want from our songs going forward. Relativity and providing a sense of understanding is something that everybody needs in one way or another, albeit through our music or some other form of artistry. We definitely want to continue in that direction.
What is next for you guys this year?
Quay Jones: Probably our favorite material to date. From our heaviest track, we've written as a band, to our most experimental. I guess you'll have to wait and see, haha.