Op-Ed: itoldyouiwouldeatyou’s Joey Ashworth


Today, UK collective itoldyouiwouldeatyou unleash their new EP, ‘Get Terrified’. Consisting of three singles and one remix, it sees the sextet provide a smooth and rich blend of indie-punk/emo. However, when you delve past its musical charm, you discover a set of songs that take a deeper meaning as Joey Ashworth comments on the uncertain and alarming socio-political climate, being discriminated against as non-binary and bisexual and the prevalence of mental health issues.

To mark its release, we’ve given Joey space for them to write an op-ed piece that ties into the songs on ‘Get Terrified’.

Trigger Warning: Addresses issues surrounding eating disorders, abuse and self-harm.

Good Morning America!

Live, from New York, it’s the end of the fucking world!

I spend so much time looking in the mirror. I’ve long given up on looking how I want to look, so I just try and look the best version of what I have. I have to dress masc a lot because it flatters my fat and means people look at me less. Around the time that Cambridge Analytica was harvesting my data to fix elections, my partner at the time texted me to say that she’d be late to make dinner because she was meeting a friend for a drink.

I felt bad, not because I had a problem with them having a nice time, but because my plans had now changed, which made me very anxious. While Alexander Nix was shopping his ability to read my mind to various unstable governments, I drank a bottle of vodka, binge ate a lot of meat (I was vegetarian at the time) and made myself throw it all up. In the moments before the world ends, no one will care that I look too much like a boy.

I think about what I would do if the alert went off on my phone that I had moments to live. There’s no point thinking about who I would call, because the phone lines would be like New Year’s Eve times a thousand. The apocalypse is a non-denominational holiday.

Something feels wrong, all the time. It’s like I’m living in the end of history. I know that everyone else is feeling the same thing, but no one cares and I’m not sure I do either. This must have been what they said during the first Cold War though. Every generation thinks it’s the last. But what if we are?

I no longer have any sympathy for those who grew up during the Cold War. They had the privilege of governments and media that prepared them for the possibility of Nuclear Holocaust. Our governments don’t want to order drills in schools and workplaces because they know it won’t work. Our media is engaged in a cynical game of chicken, driving in a straight line towards irradiation waiting to maximise advertising revenue before they bail out and watch the flames from the top of the cliff. They deserve to perish and I hope they do.

I’m proud of myself because I took my anti-depressants this morning. I checked on my partner and they are feeling a bit better than yesterday, and as far as I know, I am the only person in my circle of friends to have self-harmed in the last month. It’s a really good day, honestly.

Chevvy Blazzer drunk in the living room

“These 6 heartbreaking tweets from the destruction of Whitechapel will completely change the way you think about The Decaying Wasteland”

When I’m feeling totally lost, my dad says I should find the last point of clarity. He means I need to search my feelings and find the last time I was clear about what I wanted, or at least the last time I felt like I was doing the right thing. I often find it hard to remember when that was, but if I defocus my mind and try to feel instead of think, I can normally channel it in our music. Get Terrified tells me that I don’t remember when I wake up, but it can happen as I speak. The light can come back at any time, I just have to stop paying attention.

I don’t believe in any of this. I am not cynical. I will not let anyone take away my clarity of hope. I know where I’m going, and I’m taking all the poor queer kids with me. It’s the kind of hope that makes me want to humiliate old men who bully young women and tells me that the world is only one well-placed kick in the teeth away from full equality for all my trans and non-binary comrades. I am so, so scared. My tattoos don’t mean anything, stop asking.

Nihilism is for middle-class teens trying to get laid. Those who are truly struggling run out of patience for nihilism because nihilism doesn’t put food on the table. Nihilism doesn’t teach your kids and nihilism can’t build a shelter for whatever is coming. I can’t Nietzsche my way out of someone owing me £20. Hitchens, Dennett, Dawkins. Good minds who spent their lives trying to articulate a worldview popularised by 14-year-olds doodling in the back of RE notebooks.

I Feel Like That

I am happy. I am sat in the hospital with my suicidal friend who, months later, will be outed as a habitual abuser. I am telling our mutual friend that my love never runs out while they sleep it off. I am the last ad break on American TV before the news of 9/11 broke. I am here, in so many pieces. We’ve carried out a further review of your image and the text looks fine.

So here it is: I don’t know what my songs are about. I just know that they are exactly how I feel. They come from somewhere else that knows me better than I know myself and I just have to trust that it’s all going to be ok. The world will keep spinning, and hate is so hard to maintain. I breathe in and I hope that as I exhale the attachments leave me and all I have is prayer.

You don’t remember when you wake up, but it can happen as you speak.

Further reading:

I Can See Neoliberalism Through The Gaps In My Fingers But It Cannot See Me (For I Refuse To Be In The Correct Resolution For Recognition)

National Center for Transgender Eqaulity: Housing and Homelessness

Inside Elsagate, The Conspiracy-Fueled War On Creepy Youtube Kids Videos

‘Get Terrified’ EP by itoldyouiwouldeatyou is released on 20th April on Alcopop! Records x Failure By Design Records.

itoldyouiwouldeatyou links: Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Bandcamp


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