In 2020, I experienced the first year of the end of my life; creating this album was part of the process of understanding the purpose of those experiences. I had just graduated from college and quickly went from an environment where I was surrounded by people to one where I felt quite alone. The schedule with my job was pretty sporadic and spontaneous, and, while the nature of what I was doing for work was very people-centered, I was burnt out from feeling like I always had to meet the needs and expectations of others.
I never felt like I was enough, so I took on more and more responsibilities to earn some sort of validation, all the while neglecting to care for myself well. I dropped into depression, started having panic attacks, pushing away close relationships, my thoughts spiraled into a constant state of thinking about death/dying. It felt like nothing was good and would never be good again, that I was on a downward slide in life that wouldn’t ever bounce back up. To me, it felt like the first year of the end of my life, hence the title of the album.
Thinking about it now, it seems overdramatic, but that’s the way I felt and thought at the time, and in saying otherwise I would be lying to myself. Writing this album, along with opening up to trusted people in my life/getting professional help/etc., has led me to a much healthier and stable place.
The biggest theme of this album is the “cycle.” To present this theme musically, I chose to add seamless transitions between each of the tracks to create a cyclical feeling, or at least one of not knowing where one song ends and the next begins. I reference the cycle throughout the album, many times directly, but many times using a metaphor of a sort of machine. I liked the visual of this programmed thing living inside me, a machine that I can choose to turn on or off – will I choose to be a slave to this machine that is designed to do something, repeating itself over and over, or will I choose to break that cycle?
For me, the cycle was that of isolating myself, pushing people away, keeping my problems hidden. Over that year, I often attended the cycle, I allowed the program to run and said everything was fine rather than sharing my weaknesses with other people. I let the machine take over and fell into this auto-pilot mode of seclusion instead of having control of my own life.
SOURCE: Official Bio
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