Update: The release should be available on Spotify and most other services on May 10 now. Click here to pre-save it on Spotify.
I just published a new release featuring the single “Damaged If I Don’t Broken If I Do,” an extended mix of the song, a remix of the song by Gopal Metro, and another remix by Red This Ever of my song “A Pain That I’m Used To.”
Check it out below! And thank you so much for visiting my page and the support 🖤
I’ll have a new release dropping on Valentine’s Day called “Hurt You.”
The first song is what will eventually be the third track on my upcoming album, a very very GOTH cover of “Hurt You” by The Sounds. The song features my friend Samantha Darkly on Vocals.
The second song is an extended mix of my last release, “Is He Alive” that should be interesting for DJs and those of you who just don’t want that slamming drum machine to stop!
You can pre-save the release on Spotify by going here: https://distrokid.com/hyperfollow/thepurge/gr7H
The song will also release exclusively on Bandcamp the weekend before it’s released anywhere else.
I just published a new music video on YouTube for my song “A Pain That I’m Used To.” The song was featured on my album from last spring, The Bad Ideas We Build Worlds, and holds a very special place in my heart.
While it’s one of the later songs on the album and I released the song “Faith & Trust” as a single before it, it’s actually the first song I really wrote after a very long break from writing any music as The Purge. Recording the studio version of the song is, literally, the way I built calluses back up on my fingers. I was in immense emotional pain after my long-term partner left me for another man and the first romantic experience I had after that fell apart in ways that I wasn’t prepared to expect or deal with yet.
This song helped me come to terms with the fact that I was trying to hold onto patterns of dependency and that I needed to stop seeking easy comfort in another person. I also realized that I had a tendency to try and fix the problems in other peoples’ lives before mine. I was emptying myself in ways that were ultimately destructive to me and not truly benefiting the people I was trying to help; it was a pain that I had become used to and I needed to learn how to live without it.
*Edit* Over the holiday week the song actually managed to peak at #1 for a few days! Big thanks to everyone who purchased the release and made that happen! ❤
My new song, “Is He Alive,” released on Bandcamp earlier this week. It won’t be available on Spotify or other big distributors until early in January, but so far this thing has very much exceeded my expectations!
The spirit of a 16 year old goth boy who wears Tripp pants and has Robert Smith hair lives inside of me and has never really left, no matter how much I’ve matured, and that 16 year old boy is absolutely blown away to see that “Is He Alive” is actually #3 on the Goth charts at Bandcamp.
Obviously, this couldn’t be possible without all the people who are listening and actually buying the track, so thank you sooooo much for doing that!
If you haven’t yet, you can find it at http://www.thepurgeva.bandcamp.com
You can get the song by itself, but the release also includes a remix of the song by Heretics in the Lab that gives the song a different and brutal urgency.
Again, very much in love with the fact that this has happened and THANK YOU SO MUCH for following me and supporting the music ❤
I recently shot and released a music video for my song “It’s a Bad Idea”
Check it out on my YouTube channel. I’m trying to get my subscriber count over 100 asap so I can unlock certain features on the platform that I don’t have access to yet, so please subscribe to the channel if you haven’t yet ❤
Thank you for visiting my website! I appreciate you ❤
This new release will be the first in a series of releases taking place every two/three months. I produced an album’s worth of new songs over the summer and beat myself up about how/when I was going to release it. I came up with the plan that I’d release the album gradually, so this first single, “Carried Away,” will be track 1 on the album when it’s all finally revealed.
Before I get into it, I want to give a very special thanks to This Hollow Machine for giving me the remix of Faith & Trust that’ll appear on this release (expect cool remixes and bonus tracks to appear on most of these releases).
So, some background about this song, “Carried Away.”
I have a lot of time to work on music and go to shows and play out during the summer because I worked for a school the rest of the year. This last summer, in particular, I found myself infatuated with someone. I’d already had some feelings for this person for a while, but those feelings became super amplified in a way that frightened me.
You might be asking, “Thomas, why would you let those feelings frighten you?” Well, EVEN IF it were a relationship that made any kind of sense, it definitely didn’t make any sense right now. I’d just gotten out of an incredibly complicated relationship (we weren’t married, but we’d been together for 7 years and own a house together; she was pregnant when we met and her son considers me dad and vice-versa) and I’d made a promise to myself to stay single until I’d accomplished some very important things.
I hadn’t accomplished most of those things by the time these feelings crept up and there are still a couple more I need to cross off the list, but to call the cognitive dissonance I was feeling “intense” would’ve been an understatement. I felt sick.
I ended up telling the person exactly how I felt and I still don’t know if that was a good idea or not. Most days it doesn’t feel like it, but I did, and I wrote this song about it. In many ways I wrote this song for that person and to memorialize how important they are to me, but I think that, at the end of the day, I mostly wrote this song for me because I needed to be honest with myself.
I’d spent the last several years trying to put a cap on my feelings; in my song “The Danse” I have a line about how “I’ve made a lifestyle out of denying myself what I want.” I’d gotten so incredibly used to feeling ashamed for feeling any hint of passion or desire towards people and, I know now, that’s not a good state for me to be in.
The refrain of this new song is “I got carried away,” but, while I definitely felt that at the time I wrote it, I think I’m starting to become okay with the fact that I have these feeling. I think I’ll be okay whether they’re reciprocated or not and, honestly, I probably only felt so carried away because of how much I struggled against the tide.
The next release will come in December and be called “Is He Alive?”
Is he, though?
Stay tuned to find out.
It’s been a running joke between me and the Charlottesville goth scene that I should record a parody version of Only Black and make it about being really hungry. It all started in an IHOP after my album release concert for The Bad Ideas We Build Worlds. DJ Pat Sixtwosix made some comment about “Pancakes hit me like a heavy dose” and the puns on my lyrics kept coming.
Now I’ve finally made this silly thing 😂
TLDR Version: The new Purge album will be released one song at a time, starting in October. Each single will be released in the order they will appear on the album and the final song will be the title track. Each single will be released roughly every 2-3 months. Each release will also have at least one remix or bonus track alongside it whenever possible (with the album’s one cover song being a possible exception; I might wipe that one after the whole album is released to avoid double paying the mechanical royalty maintenance so I don’t think I want to attach extra stuff to that release). I’m pacing this so the album’s final reveal will be around February or March of 2020.
I’ve had a very exciting summer…
The Purge, since I started it, has always been about exploring really personal and painful things for me. Sometimes it comes from a genuinely reflective place, and I think one of the reasons why I’ve been so proud of The Bad Ideas We Build Worlds is because, at least in terms of where my lyrics are coming from, there’s a balance between a state of tough reflection and being caught in the pull of urgent emotion. In songs like Faith & Trust, The Danse, Something That Isn’t Me, and What’s Best Is Best, I found myself taking a really scrutinizing gaze on myself and trying to name the patterns and impulses I’ve developed over my life. But it also has songs like Only Black, It’s a Bad Idea, and A Pain That I’m Used To on there. Those were songs that I produced very urgently in, or right after, a moment of overwhelming emotion.
It’s not a secret that I was in a relationship for 7 years that disintegrated and then ended very painfully. At the time I am writing this, I just began a real therapy option for the first time since everything happened and it’s a big deal to me that I’m doing this.
All last year I’d pretty much thrown my overflow of emotional distress into rehearsing and performing shows. It provided a really great outlet for me (trust me, there’s often a lot to feel upset about at the end of the day when you work in Education) and I think it will continue to be and I don’t think there’s anything wrong with me using it that way. But by itself, I’m not sure if it’s enough to get me where I think I can start feeling okay with my life.
I’ve needed to talk to people about some of the things that have happened to me and what I’m going through. Unfortunately, and this is coming to me right now as I reflect and write this, I feel as though one of the more unhealthy relationship patterns in my life is that I almost always try to reach out to the wrong people at the wrong times. Some of my Faith & Trust lyrics are coming back to me with different connotations right now, actually (songs sometimes tell us different things at different times; that’s partly why I use my abstract and blurry aesthetic with The Purge artwork). Point is, I’ve needed professional help for a long time, have opted to look for help in almost exclusively the wrong places without it, sometimes entered into really toxic situations or sabotaged otherwise healthy relationships because of that, and I’m about to start getting better help (like, literally. My first go at this therapy thing is through BetterHelp).
And so that brings me to what my summer has been like. I actually finished enough material for a new Purge album and it’s strong. I even have the track listing settled in now. It’s 9 songs and, with maybe one exception, they’re all more urgent and “in the moment” sounding than what I did with The Bad Ideas We Build Worlds. I’ve listened to it in its current form probably well over a dozen times now and, now that much of the excitement in my life has started to resolve and I’m genuinely reflecting, I’m shocked by how carried away I let myself get (“Carried Away” is one of the songs, actually).
With my career as a teacher about to go into overdrive when the summer ends, I’m really concerned about how much time I’ll have to actually write new material over next year. As excited as I was by the idea of releasing three albums in one year (my industrial side project, Nur Black, has an album release scheduled for the 21st and a big show in Charlottesville VA planned that night and you should totally come if you’re close *wink wink*), I’m realizing that maybe that was just another part of how much I was losing control of myself in the moment.
I don’t think I’m doing myself any favors by rushing this thing out now and trying to promote, yet another, album while starting my teaching career in full swing. It honestly wouldn’t be fair to The Bad Ideas We Build Worlds. Those songs still have a lot to teach me and they need time to breathe. *I* need to make time for myself to breath. The fact that I was so eager to do all that to myself has me concerned, actually (again, starting therapy).
I don’t want to feel like I’m sitting on this stuff forever though, and, given that I might not be songwriting as much until next summer (if I can tour like I ought to then maybe I still won’t be then), I’m planning to release the new album piece by piece. I think I need to do this for me.
So for each song, I’m planning on writing a personal essay to go with it for my blog. This will also give me almost 9 times as many opportunities to have fun with this photography style I’ve been using for my artwork (I like zooming in and taking macro shots of things with my phone and then abstracting them with blur and desaturation for most of my album art).
I produced this next album so fast it’s actually kind of ridiculous to me and I was really lost in myself while I did it. The first song I finished was a cover with Samantha Darkly (I think she’s starting a new project called Darkhouse now) and I just looked up the date on the selfie we took after recording it and realized that was only 5 weeks ago. This means I wrote, produced, and finished almost two songs every week and had an album ready. While I felt like the act of finishing The Bad Ideas We Build Worlds was, in and of itself, a very self-reflective act, this new album just isn’t that at all.
I’d made a post about dropping a single on the 31st. I need to dial things back and not do that. I’m going to wait until October to start rolling these songs out (hard to be a goth artist and not do something special in October). I tried to listen to the album again the morning before I started writing this and I felt, with some horror, that I maybe didn’t know who was singing these lyrics.
It’s really important to me that I give myself some emotional distance from this work because it burns to the touch right now. I need to explore the songs and explain them to myself before I just put it all out there and start playing them.
I’m going to try and roll these out kind of slowly because I’d like for next summer to be the time when I hit the road to try and get The Bad Ideas We Build Worlds into some new ears & hands, and I like the idea of spicing things up with a remix or two to go with each release when I can actually make that happen (hit me up if you’re into doing one). My plan is to pace this out with a new single every 2 months or so. At that rate, with October being my first release, it means the whole album will be fully revealed around February or March of 2020. Maybe that sounds like a really long time away, but I’ll get to do something interesting every few months and it sets me up pretty well to spend the summer after next promoting a full Purge release.
So yeah, if you read all of that, thank you and I appreciate you.
I’ve had a very exciting summer.
(I originally wrote this as a Facebook post on my personal page as a profile picture update and regular status update. At the time I’m publishing this, between the two posts, the message has been been shared over 50 times and seems to have struck a chord with my friends in Charlottesville so I’m brave enough to publish it here for posterity now too)
*trigger warning: This post contains, what some might consider, a graphic retelling of the events from Charlottesville on August 12th, 2017. This is mostly written for people who weren’t there, so if you were then take into consideration that it may bring back painful memories before reading it straight through.*
If you were tuning out the news around this time last year and didn’t hear about what happened in Charlottesville, that’s probably fair. There’s a lot of crazy stuff out there on the internet these days and it’s easy to ignore provocatively headlined click bait (you’re probably better off if you do, honestly).
So, if you didn’t look into it, or if you were skeptical when you scrolled by something that said, or heard someone say, that three people died after roughly 500 Nazis and Klansmen descended on some city in Virginia last year then I can’t blame you too much. It really does sound too ridiculous to believe.
It actually happened, though (multiple links from various sources at the bottom of the post).
I’ve made a lot of friends in Charlottesville over the last year and, while I’d known about the “alt-right” movement for a while before there was actually a rally there, it wasn’t until I made those connections that I really appreciated how deep the scars from the “Unite The Right Rally” were.
There’s a reason why I put “alt-right” in air quotes up there, by the way. If you’ve not looked into it before, that term might sound like you’d use it to describe edgy millennials who maybe feel strongly that federal taxes are too high or that entitlement programs dissolve the spirit of meritocracy. You know, people who you may or may not have a strong difference of opinion with on a particular issue but could still, probably, be comfortable holding a philosophical debate with, ultimately agreeing to disagree, and then moving on.
You would be wrong for thinking that though, and that’s an intentional branding maneuver of the term “alt-right” to pacify outrage.
I might sound hyperbolic here, (I promise I’m not and I’ll link an interview with Richard Spencer at the end so you can hear it for yourself if you want), but that term represents those who support a “white Ethno-State” in America.
In other words, they want an American government that segregates people who aren’t white, prohibits immigration of people who aren’t white, and are, at best, pretty vague about what to do with people who aren’t white but already live here.
If that sounds like it is, or is just close enough to being, neo-Nazi or KKK hate speech to you, that’s because it should.
So, please, if you’re still with me, imagine roughly *500* people who believe that kind of thing, as well as openly identifying neo-Nazis and KKK members, are marching through your town; Not just what you imagine a place like Charlottesville to look like, I really want you to imagine your town.
Now, imagine they are marching through your town.
They are marching by the job you or your husband or wife work at. They are marching by the park you take your children to. They are marching by your favorite restaurant or coffee spot or bar. They lift signs with racist and anti-semetic slogans and they chant those slogans in loud unison and with uncanny conviction. They wave Nazi & Confederate flags and they brandish knives, clubs, and shields.
Now imagine that the police aren’t trying to stop them.
Now imagine that roughly twice that many people (many of whom are your friends, coworkers, associates, neighbors) are there standing up against the hatred. They’re there to declare that that kind of thinking, perhaps aside from a cautionary history on how inhumanity and atrocity is bred, deserves no serious discussion in our society (it doesn’t). Some of them have come prepared to protect you and your family and your town (if necessary). There are brawls in the street and chaos is erupting.
Now, imagine the police are, finally, called in to try and quell the erupting chaos but now it’s too late.
There is panic and rioting through your town, outside your or your husband’s or your wife’s job, by the park you take your children to, by your favorite restaurant or coffee stop or bar.
Now imagine that a helicopter crashes in the distance and, in your town, a silver car ploughs through a line of people (many of whom are your friends, coworkers, associates, neighbors).
One person dies and 19 are seriously injured. Imagine that you knew one of the people who were hurt.
Now imagine that you knew the person who died.
Now imagine that the President makes a statement. He has an opportunity to explicitly condemn racism in our modern age and to show solidarity with the people who stood up against it and who stood up to protect you, your family, and your town (many of whom were your friends, co-workers, associates, neighbors).
Now imagine that he doesn’t.
You still live in your town. It doesn’t feel the same way anymore. You remember what you saw, what you heard, where you ran, where you tried to stay safe. It’s been almost a year and the anniversary of it all is a few days away.
Now imagine that some meaningful amount of those same 500 people, perhaps new ones too, with the same hate in their hearts and their ideas and their voices, want to come back to your town.
Now, how do you feel?
We live in really troubled times and it can feel like everywhere you look there’s a new thing to be upset about, but this is one of those things where I think awareness is really important. Today the governor preemptively declared Charlottesville under a state of emergency for the upcoming anniversary and I’m really concerned for my friends, but I’m also very concerned about a world where ideas like those expressed by Richard Spencer and other forms of hate speech are taken seriously by some.
If you are the parent of, or if you work closely with young and potentially impressionable people, this is especially important. Please read or watch or listen about what happened last year in Charlottesville. Please try to have a potentially awkward conversation with a child or young adult in your life about what’s going on. If they’re using the internet, try to explain to them how to identify if they’ve stumbled upon hate-speech or propaganda. Expose them to other cultures when and where you can, and remind them to look for the common humanity in people. Arm them with experience and compassion so that they might read through the fallacies and fears and false assumptions of far-right extremism. Encourage them to learn another language so they might experience the frustration of not being able to say what they mean to a new person (you don’t even necessarily have to travel for this anymore if you have internet access) and can translate that experience into empathy and love for others who are different.
You shouldn’t have ever needed to do any of those things to help prevent the spread of fascist ideas in America in a post Holocaust world, but here we are, and it looks like it might need to be done.
If you’re just reading this somewhere that’s a safe distance away from Charlottesville or DC, please consider researching what happened further and sharing this.
If you’re reading this and you’re in those areas right now, I love you and be careful.
Please watch this documentary about the philosophies of the alt-right and what happened in Charlottesville and review any of the other links I referenced:
*some links to what happened in Charlottesville last year from various other sources:
*trigger warning* Link to Richard Spencer’s interview and some of the radical ideals that inform the “alt-right.” https://www.npr.org/2016/11/17/502476139/were-not-going-away-alt-right-leader-on-voice-in-trump-administration