Early last year, I was gifted a session with a psychic by a good friend. When she examined my energy body, she told me my throat chakra was surrounded with the colors of a healer and well-developed, which makes sense because I’m a writer. But she also told me I had suffered damage to it—she said it looked like it had exploded out of the back of my neck. “Have you ever felt silenced?” she asked me. I replied yes, and in my mind swirled the millions of messages I’d gotten from people I had trusted throughout my life—family, close friends—about how my voice was disruptive, it was rude, it was inappropriate, it was confrontational. Most of the time when I was told this I wasn’t fighting anyone, I was just observing the disfunction of the world around me. And I realized how I had learned to protect myself by censoring my own voice when I thought I’d face blowback from my parent or sibling or “friend.” I thought about how for generations, the people who speak against the systemic/cultural/structural order of society are punished, exiled, murdered; and how we all carry that fear in our blood. “You see Truth,” she told me, “but you don’t need anyone else to see it to know it’s Truth.” So I pour my voice and my heart out into this blog, carried in the vessel of others’ creative expression.
When KNOW//SUFFER‘s vocalist says, “Bleed into your mouth/Swallow the truth down” on their track “Vertigo,” it gives me chills. This El Paso band drops jewels of wisdom on top of a bed of death-infused hardcore that will crush your eardrums! In a time when we have access to anyone’s strangest thought processes, many of us still don’t realize how purposely distorted truth is. How desperate our systems are to shut down our access to our inner wisdom. How so many of us carry the DNA of knowledge that’s been forced into hiding through brutal oppression. How the taste of our own blood reminds us of our humanity while we’re coerced into swallowing it to stay productive and stay in our place and stay alive. And also how greatly power has underestimated the masses, because the pressure of centuries has formed generations with the strength to reject our oppressors. “Vertigo” is off KNOW//SUFFER’s new EP The Great Dying that came out July 30th on Silent Pendulum Records—you can order it here. Now watch our exclusive premiere of “Vertigo” below…
Black Power and Brown Pride came together at a critical moment to make this band. El Paso is a melting pot. Anything can happen. When chaos knocks on your door you can either embrace it or run from it.– Toast Williams, vocals, Know//Suffer
I aspire to touch the floor in my falling dreams. An agoraphobic flare come to a head. This is not the worst I’ve been subjected to. At this point, I’ve grown up with the knowledge of the task at hand. Soaking in the anger brought to my battle weary feet. Acting as one in the corner should. Bleed into your mouth. Swallow the truth down. Get used to it. Let this rot turn into monuments. In repetition is repetition worth repeating.