In some ways, I can barely remember what life was like before I joined Mute Prophet. Three albums, international radio play, touring – such incredible things have happened in the last seven years, it almost feels like a completely different existence.
In fact, before I joined the band, I’d actually never sung a note! Seriously. So how did I end up singing symphonic metal, of all things?
Well, the thing is…joining this band literally saved my life.
Imagine being so emotionally numb, so unable to feel, that part of you doubts you’re real at all. You feel like a ghost.
Your perception of yourself and the world around you is so dulled, you’d swear your day-to-day life is a dream that you won’t be able to remember upon waking.
You aren’t you, you’re just a disembodied spirit observing someone who happens to look like you.
That describes something I spent years struggling with – a very rare mental disorder where depression and PTSD intersect, called Depersonalization. And it was actually this disease of the mind that led to me discovering metal. And metal truly did save my life.
How so? Well…here’s the part that’s hard to share, but necessary.
So I had this crazy ex-boyfriend.
And one night he decided to beat me half-to-death, rape me, and leave me for dead on a fucking sidewalk.
Thankfully a passerby found me and took me to a hospital. But even after all my injuries had healed and I was cleared to go home, I couldn’t feel. Everything felt fake, like a very convincing dream.
I truly wasn’t sure I was real. Food had no taste. I couldn’t hear the sound of my own voice when I spoke. All emotion, good or bad, was gone. Part of me thought maybe my ex had killed me after all, and I was a ghost who hadn’t quite realized I was dead.
It left me in a really dark place. I drank heavily, I abused drugs, I cut myself for the endorphin high (cliche, I know, but it worked for a little while), and I fantasized almost hourly about swallowing my entire medicine cabinet just to see what would happen.
But then…something I never expected…
Kevin (our lead guitarist) and I had been best friends for years. And when I opened up to him about how utterly broken I was, he said the last thing I would have expected: “Try singing.”
Now bear in mind, again, I’d never sung a note in my life before this. So understandably I was reluctant.
But he basically argued, “Look, you’re suicidal anyway, how much more could you possibly have to lose? It might help you the way guitar helps me.”
He pulled up Nemo by Nightwish and essentially told me to do my best to sing along. Very beginner-friendly, right?
But as the song went on, I started to feel something again, for the first time in months. And as that chorus kicked in – “All I wish is to dream again” – I still get goosebumps thinking about how it felt. Tears were streaming down my face, my throat did something that was kind of like a yawn and a sob at the same time and I actually HEARD my voice turn from this meek little thing into a full opera tone that overpowered Kevin’s speakers.
By the time I was done, he had this shocked look on his face. And naturally I assumed it was shock at how horrible I must have sounded, and apologized profusely for subjecting him to that.
Imagine my shock when he asked me to be the singer for a symphonic metal band he’d been trying to put together!
From that moment on, this has been my everything. Music has given me purpose, a reason to live and fight and overcome my trauma. Whatever I’m going through, it can always be fixed by belting out a high note or growling at the top of my lungs.
It’s a sort of glue that binds Mute Prophet together despite our separate life experiences, this goal of turning tragedy and pain into something triumphant. This band gave me an outlet to transmute things I would otherwise never have been able to overcome, into something amazing.
It’s not just me of course, we’ve all had our struggles – Chris was homeless and lived on the streets, Kevin and Louisa nearly died from autoimmune diseases that got out of control – and all of us credit this band for helping us through our hard times.
Music truly does have the power to change lives. That’s the reason I felt compelled to share this story, because everyone has their pains and struggles. But with music – and especially metal – we can triumph over anything! So raise the horns: No matter what you’re going through, metal’s there for you! And here’s hoping that Mute Prophet becomes one of your new favorites!
So please, leave a comment below or email me and let me know how you feel about this post, what you think of the music you’ve heard so far, or even just to say hi! It would mean a lot.
Thank you again for reading, and please do leave a comment below or shoot me an email if you feel like saying hi ❤️