Tracks By Tracks: PHARMACOSE - Prescription Fiction (2022)

1. Welcome To My Mind:

I wrote this song specifically to lead off the album. I wanted an energetic song that would quite literally welcome the listener to my mind since this album is a sort of timeline of my mental health of a decade. Although Lu produced the entire record, there were a couple of songs that I started producing on my own that I eventually brought to him. I wasn’t really ready at that point to start fully producing on my own.

2. Pretty Porcelain:

This was the last track written. It was another one of the handfuls of tracks I began producing on my own but eventually brought to Lu. It was written toward the beginning of the pandemic. We were all geared up to start playing out live in support of the release of this record, but obviously, that never happened. I was really bummed out and even considered quitting music altogether. Fortunately, I wrote this song instead. The title is a metaphor. I’m comparing whatever semblance of a music career I felt I had at the time to a piece of porcelain. I felt they were both good conversation pieces but ultimately didn’t have much of a purpose.

3. The Clearing:

This is one of the more hopeful songs on the record. It is me acknowledging the past, accepting it, and trying to move forward.

4. Checked Out:

Lu and I wrote the music of this song together. I showed up to the studio one day with just the opening riff, and we just went with it. I also wrote the lyrics that day. It was during a time when I was trying to get my medication regimen sorted out. I wasn’t manic, and I wasn’t experiencing full-blown depression. I was just sort of plodding through the days, working and then coming home and playing video games. I really was checked out.

5. I Keep Dreaming of the Sun:

This is the one song on the record that the four of us wrote together. It’s sort of the opposite of The Clearing. Acceptance is probably the most important step in getting better, but it’s not so much a one-and-done thing. If you’re not careful, it’s easy to convince yourself that the diagnosis is overblown, and you don’t need the meds or the therapy visits.

6. Does It Matter:

This song, along with Take A Pill, were the first songs on the record I wrote, nearly a decade ago. Back then I was unmedicated, drinking too much, and emotionally labile. It started out as being an anthem to being unique, but it just went off the rails from there.

7. Smash:

This might be my favorite song off the record, probably because it’s talking about what I like to call “fun conspiracy theories,” like UFOs and the Mothman (my personal favorites). But, it’s also about how being different and enjoying things that go against the mainstream can be lonely.

8. Take A Pill:

This song was one of the first songs on the record I wrote. I’d say it was written about a decade ago. Looking back, I think I might have been manic while I was writing it. I remember scribbling the lyrics down illegibly in a notebook. I had just had a relationship end partially because I confessed that I was depressed, and she didn’t really understand. The song essentially is me convincing myself to get on antidepressants.

9. Alternate Reality:

This is another song I wrote around the time I wrote Take a Pill and Does It Matter. It’s about moving to a new city and feeling isolated.

10. Perfect Pharmaceutical:

This was one of two songs that Albert, Lu, and I wrote and recorded together. It’s about wishing there was a magic pill, not just to treat mental illness, but also to treat physical and spiritual ailments.

11. Victory At Wit’s End:

This is the second of two songs Albert, Lu, and I wrote together. This song shares a similar theme to The Clearing. It’s about acknowledging the past and moving on.

12. The Forgotten:

This is one of the songs that I began producing on my own and then took to Lu, who helped me take it the rest of the way. This is probably the saddest song on the record. While I was getting over the manic episode I had a few years back, I quit drinking. That really helped my mental state, but I had to say goodbye to a lot of friendships that were basically built on drinking. It’s also about how lonely I felt during this time.

13. Not Today:

Lu did the music to this song by himself. He just had a great musical idea and ran with it. He’s super talented in that regard. As far as the lyrics, I was inspired by Syrio Forel’s proclamation in Game of Thrones that we say to death “Not today!”

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