This album was written and recorded in various bedrooms between October 2014 and October 2015, while I was living in Northport, NY and Black Rock, CT. Two seaside towns, located directly across the Long Island Sound from each other.
It started out as a handful of stories about my friends, and feeling physically buried alive under the weight of the coldest, bleakest winter in recent memory.
I had a dark studio apartment, a long commute, and a job with no purpose. I had trouble maintaining any level of meaningful human relationship with anyone aside from my bandmates and close family members. I enjoyed my own company far more than any healthy human should.
It was unfulfilling in almost every area, but I lived in a picturesque Long Island village, and on my days off I would get breakfast at my favorite diner, then read or draw for hours at the harbor: watching boats, people, dogs, what have you. It could have been worse, but it could have been better. So, I moved to Connecticut. I did it for the usual reasons: money, a change of scenery, because I had nothing better to do, etc. It was roughly the same, but not as good, and the people and places had different names.
That’s what I thought this record was about.
But, as I got to know these songs over this past year, and learned the ins and outs of their characters and subject matter, I started to realize there was something else there. What I saw was a common thread in my work, and in my life, of escapism. Always looking for a way out, wanting to start over, wanting to be somewhere, or even, someone else (see: Pseudocide).
I’ve left jobs that I liked, places that I liked, and people that I liked, for no other reason than to simply be somewhere else. In the past 2 years, I've worked in 3 different cities in 2 different states, and called 3 different places home. In 2 weeks, I will have uprooted my life to North Carolina, and it’ll be 4.
What am I running from? What am I running towards? Why do I find myself dealing with the same problems regardless of where I go, or who I’m with? What is actually wrong with me?
These are the questions that this record poses and attempts to answer. They’re difficult questions, and sometimes, I’m learning, there are only difficult answers.
Pseudocide is by no means a perfect record, an optimistic record, or even a complete story. It is, simply, a document. It is a story I felt compelled to put to music and share, because as much as I still enjoy my own company far too much, I know I’m not alone with these questions. I’m happy that it exists, if for no other reason than to be better understood, and to lend insight to others trying to answer questions of their own.
JP x JR
released October 31, 2015
All music and lyrics
written, performed, and recorded
by Matthew Cassillo
Artwork by Matthew Cassillo
all rights reserved