End of Suffering

End of Suffering

“It’s important to bare my soul the way I have,” Frank Carter tells Apple Music. “I have a platform and a responsibility to use it for good, to ask questions and make statements that I know other people feel but maybe don’t have the bravery or the means to.” End of Suffering, Carter’s third album with The Rattlesnakes, is the product of two years of unflinching self-reflection. Confessional and courageous, it spans moments of both great joy and profound despair. “I’ve constantly validated myself through the opinion of others,” he says. “I’ve looked to fill that void with drugs and alcohol and sex and relationships, and they’ve all fallen short. It can only come from within. We’re human: We’re very complicated, we’re extremely multifaceted. The minute you try and repress any one of those faces, that’s when the problems start.” The music soundtracking these reflections is equally searching and absorbing. “We made sure that everything’s in there, from techno and dance through to Elton John and Black Flag.” This is Frank’s track-by-track guide to his journey. “Why a Butterfly Can’t Love a Spider” “It sets the tone for the entire record. We learned finally that if you give space, suddenly everything sounds just so much bigger. ‘Less is more’ has never been truer in rock music. Lyrically, I was trying to find a way to describe the kind of relationships that we shouldn’t have. No matter how relaxing it looks to sit on a spider’s web, if you’re a butterfly, you’re going to get eaten.” “Tyrant Lizard King” (feat. Tom Morello) “We’ve all got multiple different ideas of ourselves. There’s who we feel we are when we’re at our lowest, and there are times we look in the mirror and actually feel good for a change, like, ‘I’m killing it!’ We’ve all got that spirit animal in us, and mine just happens to be a big, fuck-off tyrannosaurus rex. But one day, T. rex looks behind him and he’s like, ‘Oh fuck, I’ve trodden a lot of people into the ground.’ We said to Tom that we'd kill for a Tom Morello solo on our album, and he threw it down immediately. It’s perfect because it's the most chaotic part of the record and it was nice for us to be able to take a step back from that.” “Heartbreaker” “I came out of a relationship and was ready to be the T. rex and cause some fucking destruction. But then I fell in love, and it’s a beautiful thing. No matter how fleeting it is, it gives you perspective and reminds you of the best side of yourself. When the chorus drops, I can shut my eyes and I still find happiness in that moment.” “Crowbar” “You can never be comfortable living your life for someone else. Unfortunately, so many people do it because they’re fearful and sometimes it’s easier to go along. This is about being yourself and not allowing anybody—your parents, your friends, your partner, the government, society—to tell you who you are. It’s difficult and painful sometimes, but the more you do it, the better it feels, the easier it becomes.” “Love Games” “One of the first ones we recorded with [producer] Cam [Blackwood]. It’s probably the best vocal performance I’ve ever given. It gave us an enormous amount of confidence in ourselves and Cam. That allowed us to make some really bold decisions later on—to say, ‘Well, we rolled the dice for “Love Games” and look what we got.’” “Anxiety” “It’s about keeping focus and reminding yourself that if you’re having a bad time, it will pass. Someone told me that when you get into that bad space and those feelings come up, it only ever lasts 20 minutes. But it feels longer because it’s comfortable to relive it. We are creatures of habit, so we lock ourselves into patterns and routines. So it’s a case of patience and balance.” “Angel Wings” “This song is about the worst moment in my life, where I just didn’t want to live anymore. You don’t just heal from something like that—it’s in you forever, an intrusive force. The long and short of it is I became addicted to prescription medication. I had this case of vertigo that just wouldn’t go. When you try to wean yourself off, it’s painful and you come crashing down to reality. It’s important to try and be present for all of that, because it doesn’t last as long as you think. People don’t really talk about the fact that they maybe feel suicidal or they’ve tried in the past, because society treats it with shame and guilt. The reality is more people than you think will have experienced some form of that. We owe it to ourselves and each other to talk more and try to diminish the taboo so people can speak about it in a healthy way and feel strength in vulnerability.” “Supervillain” “It’s about complex relationships and a night I went out in east London to a club that was…quite fucking intense, let’s just leave it like that. It’s an honest, poetic example of modern love and lust and the things we feel that maybe society says are wrong to explore. One of the quickest ways to really understand who you are and what you mean to other people is to climb into bed with them. That’s where we bare our physical, spiritual, and mental selves. But then in the eyes of society, you’re a villain.” “Latex Dreams” “Essentially it’s about being yourself in a world where it’s so easy to fall apart into the hands of other people and substances. Sometimes those substances can be the only things that make you feel right, but they have no end and absolutely no mercy. It’s a short-term fix. A long-term solution is going to hurt for a lot longer. But once you actually come out of it, you’re going to be able to glide through the next set of short-term problems.” “Kitty Sucker” “When you write an album about the last two years of your life, it’s not all bad. There are moments of absolute celebration of the joy of living. ‘Kitty Sucker’ is about how good it can feel to give to other people sometimes…and receive. It’s about celebrating life, celebrating relationships, and new relationships, particularly.” “Little Devil” “A little devil can be that person in your life who tells you everything you want to hear, but behind your back is pinning your tail to the floor and setting fires around you. Or it can be the drugs in your pocket that you believe make you a better person, but are actually killing you slowly. A lot of the lines were born from watching people that I or my friends had allowed into our lives and the problems that they would bring.” “End of Suffering” “‘End of Suffering’ is about the pain I feel when I’m away from my daughter. It’s hard to be a musician on the road, but we have an incredibly strong bond because I’m honest with her and I explain things to her as if she’s an adult. She’s also reminded every single day, multiple times, how much I love her and how I’m there for her no matter what she needs. I’m very lucky: Her mum is an excellent co-parent and we work hard to create a safe and stable environment for our daughter. It’s reminding myself that it’s not just about me all the time.”

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