Tuesday 15 December 2015

The Broken Heed - Lie/Insufficient D

Article by KevW

Earlier this year, Bolton songwriter Johny Nocash released an album as The Broken Heed which talked about his own experience with depression and purveyed the feelings that so many people go through in a way that's rarely been achieved before, especially not over the course of ten songs. Rather than being miserable and one-dimensional, 'The Broken Heed' contained some truly gorgeous and excellently written lo-fi indie. It's one of the most touching, personal and downright best albums of the year. Funds from sales of the album have already been sent to CALM (Campaign Against Living Miserably), a charity that supports men with mental heath issues. It's a shocking and surprising statistic that the biggest killer of men aged 20 to 45 is suicide. If you haven't heard it, you really should, and our review with links can be found here.

Proceeds from this brand new single will also go to CALM, and it comes at a time of year that's difficult for many people. Christmas can bring a welcome boost, but also amplify the loneliness that some people feel. 'Insufficient D' is a scratchy, sample-based song that deals with the lack of vitamin D that can occur when "the sun doesn't shine enough" and can lead to Seasonal Affective Disorder - a form of depression that's thought to be due to the body producing less serotonin as a result. It's more experimental than most Broken Heed tracks so far, becoming deliberately cluttered towards the end, as if to mirror the brain fog that can be symptom of the condition. It's 'Lie' that the most moving of the two and would have fitted in perfectly on the album. Ominous piano chords are followed by twinkling notes that continue the beauty of the LP, with lyrics that talk of being a burden to a loved one, suggesting that it's best not to wake them in the morning and go through the difficulties that come with living with someone who has depression, even going as far as saying they should think of leaving to escape sharing a miserable existence. There's light as the end of the tunnel though, as Johny sings "there's a chance that I've turned a corner" and the song picks up to become quite grandiose and poignant. It's both powerful and beautiful, and regardless of subject matter/good intentions it's worth buying for its quality alone. The Broken Heed is surely one of the most unsung projects of the year.

Stream or buy the single 

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