Edge of Free is an acoustic rock band from Nashville, Tennessee, fronted by vocalist Scott “Pony” Sneddon and guitarist John Hussey. Their debut, self-titled album was released on May 19th of this year. It is a masterpiece of pain and sorrow that the guys crafted for over a year. When asked to describe the first single off the album, Pony says, “It’s a story about some really dark times in my life mixed with some of my favorite memories, hidden in a light-hearted melody”. Since we have the album, why not dive in a bit to see what else is happening there?
The opening track, titled “Blood Eagle”, refers to the famous Norse execution method and it’s got my desk a mess with the sorrow that oozes from the speakers. The line “Roses are turning black, still you tear my flesh away”, comes off as a description of someone who is being kicked while they are down. Further into the album, Pony hints at a ride back to a place of pain. Nashville holds, in it’s depths, a ton of agony for these two. Bad things have happened there and they must go back to revisit the pain. As mentioned, the album seems to be a reflection of the past, as well as how they got over it and used that knowledge to plan the rest of their time. The message: learn from mistakes and avoid agony.
“Higher” highlights the pain of an addict in their everyday fights and struggles. Something is calling the songwriter. There is a chase and, as I see it, the easiest subject would be drugs. The songwriter tells us that they are higher than they want to be. You can bet it’s not the charts or high-life living. The very next track is called “In My Time (Falling)”, in which the singer describes himself as being “below the street”. This is what happens to addicts: going from high to lower than the bottom.
The album is not all doom and gloom either, I feel like it was set up to be a source of inspiration. It describes the hell of the songwriter. As listeners, we can interpret the message of music how we see it. We can use this artist’s pain to help with our own lives. “Autumn” is toward the end of the album. Autumn and fall, as seasons, have been used many times to represent the feeling or the state of mind one is in. In this song, I believe the addict has come to the crossroads of their addiction. They see the effects of this life and want to begin their move toward living again. “Hope is letting go” is a line from the song; letting go is a huge part of recovery and moving forward. The title track, and band’s namesake, ties all of these elements together to show that through the hell and the awful times that they have gone through, they are now standing on the Edge of Free.
“Edge of Free” is a deep album by some very accomplished and demon-addled musicians. The pain unleashed in this eight-track album took years to write. They may have put it together in the studio in just a year, but these subjects are decades in the making. The track sequence is a very integral part of the album, it is not only an album, but a book that paints a very graphic picture with a look into the musicians’ souls. The music is great, the lyrics are great and the subject matter is one that we have all had experience with, whether it be ourselves or loved ones. I recommend this album to even the darkest of metal fans. It might not be dark and heavy music-wise, but the content sure is. Good job guys, this is an album you should be very proud of!