Using Music as Therapy During My Dark Days

Blind with Rain is an electro-industrial project that was created by Aaron Geis in 2001. Since it's inception Blind with Rain has put out seven releases of either original material or remixes. All of which you can listen to and download via their website. 

I personally ran into Blind with Rain a few years ago and was instantly turned on to Aaron's style of electronic music and have followed his work ever since. So, when he announced the new Blind with Rain release, I was definitely interested and went to the Bandcamp page to listen and download it. As I started to listen to it and looked through the titles, a few caught my eye..."Feeding the Reaper", "Stuck in Here", and "Suicide". As someone who runs a site dedicated to suicide and depression awareness these titles peaked my interest. So I read through the notes at the bottom of the page. This is just a small excerpt: 

 

"The theme of the album addresses my emotions and state-of-mind between 2010 and 2014 when my family experienced (to my best estimate) thirteen deaths. Most to old age, some to disease, one to an accident, two to addiction…and one to suicide."

 

I decided that I needed to contact Aaron to see if he would mind sharing his story on making this album and how it helped him get over a very rough period in his life. Aaron graciously agreed to talk shortly about the making of the album and how it helped him. This is his story:

 

Using Music as Therapy During My Dark Days

"In 2010, the seemingly unending, consecutive deaths began in my life and didn't let up until 2014. The tally over the course of that time (to my best estimation) was 13 losses. A lot of these were the big ones, the deaths I used to dread to even think about. The people who helped shape who I was as a person were suddenly gone. But one of the deaths that affected me the most was a family member who I had not spoken to in over a decade. We were neighbors as children and I spent many humid summer evenings playing with him and his brother. We were so damn close in age. I just couldn't (and still don't) understand why he chose to take his own life over such a minor thing.

I had originally set out to release a new vocal-driven album via my moniker, Blind With Rain, in 2010. That deadline kept getting pushed back. I wasn't without inspiration for compositional ideas, but as each passing death plagued my psyche I became that much more afraid of the lyrical content that might pour out of me. I actively avoided my pen and notebook during this time. Looking back, this is a strange thought to me as I have always found solace in writing when I had turmoil in my life. It took me a long time to realize that deep down I knew my thoughts would turn into songs that people would hear, critique, and analyze. What would they think of them? Was I ready to share something so intimate? Would the songs be misinterpreted? Would my friends and family judge me? Worry about me even?

I had a breakthrough when the lyrics came to me for what would turn into the song Suicide. If you're an artist, you can relate–it was one of those times when the art created itself. I quickly realized that I had taken on the persona of the last moments of HIS life. It's hard to believe that one of the last memories I have of him was us enjoying a pizza and soda as carefree kids. How did this happen?

After I wrote Suicide I really struggled with it. Not only did the chorus sound incredibly pop-driven and uplifting, but it sounded like I was condoning (if not romanticizing) the notion of taking your own life (which was not the case at all). At some point in late 2014, I decided to put things on hold with the album once again. In Spring of 2015, I mustered the bravery to resume work on the songs, but this time with the rule that I would not censor my lyrics. No matter the feedback (or lack thereof) I might receive. This turned into a very therapeutic exercise. The collection of songs eventually turned into a concept album about the loss of my family members. I could feel the emotional burden lift with each completed song.

Although, one thing I will never be unburdened with is understanding why he took his own life. Over an argument with his on-again, off-again girlfriend? That was the reason he pulled the trigger? I watched people I loved dearly struggle during their last days (and years) fighting for another breath of life. He left behind a beautiful life un-lived, not to mention a wealth of family and friends behind. All of them saddened, confused, and wondering what they could have done.

I'm not saying I handle the stress of my life perfectly. But at the end of the day, I strongly believe life is precious and that even the most intense situations one may experience are temporary and beatable. If you don't have art at your fingertips, buy a notebook and pour your thoughts and emotions into journals. And by all means, reach out to someone and talk things out. Personally, I use music (as a musician and as a fan) to get through my dark days. I urge you to do the same."

 

You can listen to "Inter" via Spotify or Bandcamp below:

 

Inter was just released for "name your price" on Bandcamp.

 

Please make sure you check out and follow Blind with Rain at: 

blindwithrain.com

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