To Whom Am I Listening? Nothing More – Spirits

(Trying to actually take time and write about music because it makes me happy…omg whatta notion)

Let’s go: yesterday was Cris Hodges – Black Hole Magic (epic. Fucking LOVE it), Pistols AtDawn – Ascension (also a newer release, charting and is absolutely kicking ass), and Nothing More’s – Spirits.

I want to start with Nothing More because they’re a whole thing for me. I’ll write about Pistols tomorrow. I stumbled on to NOTHING MORE thanks to a Pierre Robert interview where they were talking about none other than Alan Wilson Watts. At that time, they were talking about the album The Stories We Tell Ourselves. I’ve never jumped on a band so quickly. I was basically fangirling minute one of the album. Like, are you shitting me? Alan Watts chillstep is a game-changer, but you combine Watts, guitars, drum, bass, and crazy vocals? Done.

I got the entire family into the band to the point the kids overplayed the shit outta them and I had to take a break, not gonna lie. lol. We took the gang to see Nothing More and Ghost in Reno a couple of summers ago – the first show for the 2 youngers. We had this amazing moment of just holding hands and singing Fade/In Fade Out together. Which, if you are a parent or if you have a parent, you should seriously know that song. It’s kind of our family song as much as Nothing More has become a family band.

Flash forward, my oldest’s 16th bday present was tix to see Nothing More, In This Moment, Sleep Token, and Cherry Bombs. In both shows, the coolest parts are my kids screaming “Mom it’s Alan!!!” every time a clip played. And getting to hear Alan Watts’ voice playing out in a freaking concert is… so fucking cool. I highly doubt Mr. Watts ever envisioned such a scenario and he’d get a massive case of the giggles – in his words.

Spirits just released last week, I listened to it 3x between yesterday and today alone. It gets better with each listen. I don’t really want to get too much into my opinion on most of it, because it’s subjective and my amazing could be your utter garbage. The coolest thing, to me, is how in every album, they so perfectly weave clips from Alan Watts’ speeches into the music, lyrics, and theme.

“In very much the same way…” I’ve always said that chillstep beats help me absorb philosophy more easily. So the combination of Watts with … my favorite kind of music… It’s nothing short of amazing. Listening to Spirits made things Watts said in his “Joker” speech make sense. The clips in the music/album weren’t from the speech, but hearing one made the other make more sense and helped me gain my own insight and perspective.

How friggin cool is that? So take amazing music, amazing vocals, Alan Watts, passion, rage, screaming, good fucking music… an intense live experience and you have Nothing More. Every album gets better than the last, and I feel they strike the perfect balance of taking their talent further each time, creating new emotions and experiences, but still being recognizable. The clips they choose from Watts make everything so much more resonant.

I have to imagine anybody on an as intense creative journey as creating an entire musical album and touring has to undergo … massive transformation, but Nothing More not only takes me on their own journey but helps me get there too from album to album. I really feel Spirits on another level, and lyrically, everything speaks to me a lot.

I stumbled on Watts not too long after the first psychotic break and it was massively instrumental in climbing out of the pit. Finding Nothing More was massively instrumental in healing me and my connection with my family. The release of this album and another concert with the family was moreso, now recovering from the second psychosis. Eternally grateful to this band and Alan Wilson Watts. Cannot recommend Nothing More enough, this album is kick fucking ass, and if you can see them live – it’s just beyond words.

Related: Insights and musings on recovery inspired by Mr. Watts and Spirits How Do you Recover?

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