Words: Woody Woodworth

Mental health issues are one of the leading problems today in the world. Everyone, it seems, is affected in one way or another, whether personally or through someone they care about. It’s an extremely tough rut to get yourself through and it takes every drop of motivation and effort to just do the things you used to love dearly. For Be Well, the message is clear: don’t bottle it up, keep an open dialogue.

I was in a very scary and dark place and that’s what prompted me to start writing again

“When you carry things like that and don’t share them with the people who care about you, they become corrosive and they eat at you and carry a weight you don’t deserve. It ends up taking a toll,” reflects vocalist Brian McTernan. “The overall feeling of the record is getting that out and saying those things loud.

The Weight and the Cost is the debut album from the five-piece, out August 21st via End Hit Records and Equal Vision Records. The record, three years in the making, is about the journey McTernan went through to find himself again. After a brief hiatus from music itself, he came back with a vengeance after realizing he wasn’t happy with what he was doing. Between mental health problems and struggling with fatherhood, the album brings about raw emotion, deep from within the gates of his heart.

“I was in a very scary and dark place and that’s what prompted me to start writing again,” admits McTernan. “When i started sharing demos with a friend of mine, they were reading the lyrics and were like holy shit are you okay? I really wasn’t ok. I wasn’t happy. I wasn’t connected to my own family and I feel like I was so lost in my own head that my daughter was growing up and I was missing things that felt important because I was so overwhelmed by what was happening internally and I just realized I needed to make a super drastic change in my life.”

When you have been in the music industry for 30 years, it’s bound to get a bit stale. Luckily, if you’re patient and positive, things can turn around and a fresh start will present itself in the most unexpected times. For McTernan, this was a reality. In times of anguish and uncertainty, music is able to bring out the best in us, even if we don’t see it ourselves. Sometimes a reset button is exactly what we need to find our path again.

My goal with this was to have an avenue to make music with the people I love,” says McTernan. “I really did not anticipate people relating to it the way they did and have been

“I thought the answer to the anxiety and financial pressure I was feeling would be solved by a real person job and some stability and that ended up really really backfiring,” shared McTernan. “I was always around people and all of a sudden I was at this job I didn’t give a shit about and didn’t like the people I was working with. I was by myself all the time and every day that passed things got worse.”

Putting himself back into music full time snapped him out of his spell. Teaming up with longtime friends and colleagues Mike Schleibaum (Darkest Hour), Peter Tsourus (Fairweather), Aaron Dalbec (Bane), and Shane Johnson (Fairweather) made it easier for McTernan to put the new project together and even allowed him to jump on the other side of the glass being a long time producer. Luckily, he didn’t miss a beat and the rest of the band and the support system of the label and his own family took off right with him.

“It’s a really incredible feeling; it takes a lot of pressure off when you’re working with people so experienced and so capable,” reflects McTernan. “The combination of the opportunity to do it, the connection people seem to have to it, how much I love my band members and how many awesome people care enough after spending my entire life helping other people achieve these things to be then surrounded by people that are now giving me that opportunity, I never thought I would have that again.” 

Now, McTernan is back in his own driver’s seat, happy about what he’s seeing and the journey he has found himself back on. Behind an incredible career and fantastic support system, he was able to hit the refresh button, find his love again and bring the people he loves together with his music. The reception so far has been great, but it will be overflowing in due time.

“My goal with this was to have an avenue to make music with the people I love,” says McTernan. “I really did not anticipate people relating to it the way they did and have been and I didn’t anticipate the kindness and positive feedback and how much people think to care about it. It’s very rewarding and I feel so grateful and thankful for the opportunity to be able to have done this.”

The Weight and The Cost drops on 21st August 2020 via Equal Vision Records

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