With ‘Harsh Truth’, Employed To Serve stress that suicide isn’t the answer; that the world is better with you in it; that it does get better.
[CW: discussion of suicide].
Here’s a somewhat scary anecdote for you: every single one of my music-inclined friends – from fans, band members, PR, to even my writer and media peers – have all grappled hard with depression, anxiety and suicidal thoughts. In regards to some close friends, these are issues that still affect them tremendously so; it’s still a day-by-day battle.
For me personally, I probably would’ve killed myself a long time ago if it wasn’t for the solace and strength that music has been able to offer me in my life. I may be projecting here, but I also feel like many can relate to that sentiment. These universal thoughts of self-harm, doubt, and melancholia can affect anyone. Depression simply does not discriminate.
Which is the core message behind Employed To Serve’s latest single, ‘Harsh Truth‘: that we all have our demons, and that many of us fight them behind closed doors, in isolation behind drawn curtains where no one can see our plights. Like so much of what the U.K. band’s music often is, this new track is a dark, riffy and volatile metallic hardcore soundtrack set to the hardest of times; tough personal experiences that are shared by so many people out there. For the harsh truth of the matter is indeed found within the staggering number of suicide rates in the world today.
In 2017, 5,821 suicides were registered in the U.K., the second leading cause of death among 15-29 year olds, and equates to an age-standardised suicide rate of 10.1 deaths per 100,000 population. As a comparison for us here in Australia, in 2017, data reveals that a total of 3,128 deaths were caused by suicide, rising from 2,866 deaths in 2016. These are heavy figures to consider when the human face and emotional loss behind these statistics is thus taken into the account. Which is the whole point of Employed To Serve’s latest single: to remember the human factor that makes up these grim statistics.
Starting off with a meaty drum groove from Robbie Back, vocalist Justine Jones bellows “Well I’m not going to draw my curtains today/No I’m not going to force a grin today“, reading off a suicide note in the song’s accompanying music video. Much like previous single ‘Force Fed‘, this is a chaotic, groove-based slab of hardcore that doesn’t pull any punches. With one of the eeriest, longest guitar slides I’ve heard in yonks during the bridge and the most confronting scream Justine has ever tracked hitting at 3:54, Employed To Serve unleash into one of their sickest breakdowns yet for this song’s hectic outro.
‘Harsh Truth‘ sees ETS forging full steam ahead to ‘Eternal Forward Motion‘, which drops May 10th. Expect it to take your goddamn head clean off!