Drugs Chat New Album & Its Message About Mental Illness

When trying to lead a healthy lifestyle, it’s easy to overlook the importance of mental health. The U.S. healthcare system makes it difficult for many suffering the most from mental illnesses to get help. Many in American society consider discussing mental health taboo and think it’s something that should be taken care of on your own.

Long Beach, Calif.-based four-piece Drugs want to emphasize the importance of mental health and how society desperately needs to change the approach to it. The garage rockers released their debut album Episodic on Aug. 7 and frontman Joel Jasper says it’s about the many different ways people are dealing with mental health.

“A lot of it [Episodic] has to do with mental health and the journey through dealing with friends that have mental health issues or different scenarios or perspectives of people having it,” he tells BTRtoday. “In my personal experience, especially now, I think that it’s a conversation that needs to widen, that there’s a lot to it and it’s hard to know exactly how to treat somebody with a mental illness or what to do, yet it’s a topic that gets breezed over a lot.”

Drugs “Paralyzed”

The 10-track album melodically provides many unique sagas using instrumentation that goes beyond any catch-all genres. Yes, Episodic brings an indie rock vibe, but each song is thoroughly different in sound and narrative. Tracks like “Loose Nut” or “Positive Feedback Loop” satisfy a mellower kind of headspace, whereas tracks like “Try Me” or “A Twist of the Stomach” pump up your insides in a very different way.

“This record is kind of all over the place,” Jasper says. “We always say we’re happy with it because there’s a song for everyone.”

Though in-person live shows aren’t possible right now, that’s not stopping Drugs from giving their listeners a live performance. The band recorded themselves playing their entire new album live—so keep an eye out for that coming soon, too.

“Luckily, we do have a studio space, so me and my bandmate JP have been basically just going between home and there,” Jasper adds. “Now that [Episodic] is out we’re just like, ‘Ok, should we just start writing another record?’—as far as shows, we’ll see when that happens, but we’re gonna just start working on new music and try to stay safe.”

In the meantime, tune in to this week’s episode of The Music Meetup to hear the entire interview with Drugs’ Joel Jasper and their debut album Episodic in its entirety.