If you would have told me 10 years ago that one day I’d be singing symphonic metal for a living, I would have said you were crazy.
But here we are – our music plays on the radio halfway around the world from where we live, we’ve done several tours, and we were featured in magazines next to legends like Within Temptation, Nightwish and Children of Bodom.
So what happened between then and now to transform our lives so completely? In truth, this band literally saved my life.
But I’m not here to talk about myself – this story involves you too! You’ll see what I mean ❤️
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 called Depersonalization. Your brain chemistry gets screwed up and you stop being able to feel your emotions at all.
I first noticed this occurring when I was in the hospital, recovering after an incident where I was beaten half-to-death, raped, and left for dead. 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.
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. I wasn’t even sad – I couldn’t feel anything at all, and that was worse.
Kevin, pictured above on the left, was my best friend, and after I finally opened up to him about how badly I was doing, he told me all about how he and his childhood friend Chris (on the right) had been playing guitar together as a kind of therapy to help with depression. And having said that, he basically insisted that I try singing with them.
And it worked!
Singing opera actually uses the same part of the voice as crying, and it felt similar enough that I could process my sadness. And I could tap into all the anger I was numb to by learning to scream and growl.
Suddenly they finally had a singer for their band, and it was something I needed to do in order to be happy. So we threw ourselves into making music, even before we had the proper tools.
This was our first “studio” – a horrible makeshift vocal booth in my bedroom. We broke the doors off my closet, stood them up by taping an old microwave to the outside, filled the closet with clothes, and glued heavy blankets to the insides of the doors.
It was ridiculous, but we just wanted to start making music, despite not having the money to create a more professional setup.
We just started writing and releasing music, going back and upgrading the quality every so often as we got newer and better equipment, or improved as musicians. We recorded something every day, without exception, because like I said, it was a legitimate emotional need at this point. We were all feeling a little better ever day!
In 2017, a performance video of our song Limits of Myself went semi-viral on Facebook, and we ended up gaining like 8000 fans in the span of a couple weeks.
From there, things started to snowball out of control. By the time we released our sophomore album, we were basically able to make music full-time because of how large and supportive our Facebook/Instagram fanbase was!
I’m not just me of course, we’ve all had our struggles – Chris was homeless and lived on the streets, Kevin and Louisa (our bassist, pictured above) nearly died from autoimmune diseases that got out of control – and all of us credit this band for helping us through our hard times.
It’s an amazing thing, a sort of glue that binds Mute Prophet together despite our separate life experiences, this goal of turning tragedy and pain into something triumphant. Ultimately this band is something that literally saved my life, giving me an outlet to transmute things I would otherwise never have been able to overcome, into something amazing.
And we’ve even been able to find an audience – including YOU. Musicians have no other way to judge their impact on the world, other than how listeners receive their music and their story. You show all of us that we aren’t alone, and after everything that’s happened, I don’t think words can convey how much it means to be able to connect with people like you now.
I said this involves you, and it does – because you, as a listener, make all the struggles we endured worthwhile. And here’s to hoping that you’re a part of this crazy journey from now on!
So please, leave a comment below or email me and let me know how you feel about this post, 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 ❤️