Herman Li has paid tribute to André Matos, saying that without ANGRA, DRAGONFORCE would not exist.
Matos, who sang for the Brazilian metal bands ANGRA, VIPER and SHAMAN, died on Saturday, June 8 after suffering a heart attack. He was only 47 years old.
On Sunday (June 9), the DRAGONFORCE guitarist posted a video message on the band’s YouTube channel in which he expressed his sadness over André‘s loss and acknowledged the influence Matos‘s early work had on his own musical upbringing.
“I’m doing this message because I’m very devastated from hearing [about] the loss of André Matos today,” Herman said (see video below). “I feel like this is probably better [done via] video than [by] writing it, ’cause I’m kind of at a loss for words, to be honest.
“I’ve been a big fan of André Matos and ANGRA for many years — since the beginning, since the first album — and it’s been part of my music journey for many years,” Li continued. “From learning to play the guitar, just learning music… I don’t think without ANGRA, DRAGONFORCE would have even existed. It’s one of the bands I was listening to a lot and it inspired me and influenced me and Sam [Totman, guitar] to start DRAGONFORCE.
“So I’m very, very sad to hear this news, and my condolences to André‘s family.
“Rest in peace, André Matos. You’ve been amazing and Brazil has lost such an amazing person, singer, musician. So, sorry for your loss.”
In addition to recording the vocals and keyboards on ANGRA‘s 1993 debut album, “Angels Cry”, André was the composer and arranger of nine of the ten tracks on the LP, including “Carry On”, which is still considered to be one of ANGRA‘s most popular songs. Matos also handled lead vocals on ANGRA‘s “Holy Land” (1996) and “Fireworks” (1998) albums.
Matos, along with bassist Luis Mariutti and drummer Ricardo Confessori, left ANGRA in 2000 and launched SHAMAN (later known as SHAAMAN due to legal issues). André then went on to pursue a solo career while continuing to stay involved with a number of outside projects.
André released three solo albums: 2007’s “Time To Be Free”, 2009’s “Mentalize” and 2012’s “The Turn Of The Lights”.