RAT Rock News

Taylor Momsen opened up about dealing with depression and substance abuse following the death of Chris Cornell.

The Pretty Reckless singer recently took part in a feature with Interview along with Shinedown frontman Brent Smith. When Smith asked about TPR’s latest album, Death by Rock and Roll, Momsen responded with the following:

“I don’t want to get too heavy, but there’s kind of no way to talk about it without going into the losses that we experienced. We lost a lot of people very close to us. We were on tour with Soundgarden, which was such a peak for me. I’m the biggest Soundgarden fan in the world. Chris Cornell passed away on the night of our last show. That was crushing to me. I was not mentally prepared to handle that, and it really took me down. We were in the middle of a tour, and I very quickly realized that I couldn’t get on stage every night and be okay. I couldn’t fake it. So I canceled the tour and went home. Then, I learned that our producer Kato, my best friend in the whole world and practically a member of the band, died in a motorcycle accident. That was the nail in the coffin for me. I spiraled real fast: depression, substance abuse. I fell into this hole that I couldn’t get out of—I didn’t even know if I wanted to. I finally got to a place where I felt like I really needed music again—I was depriving myself of it during that time, and I’d never done that.”

When Smith followed up by asking how she brought music back into her life, Momsen said:

“I started from the beginning. I asked myself why I fell in love with music, where did it start? I went through all the bands I grew up loving, and was even able to eventually listen to Soundgarden again, and have it bring me joy. This record was very different than our previous albums, because it almost felt like a first record. It has that unbridled inspiration that you’re always striving for. This record is an homage to those loved and lost, and it’s very hopeful. It captures the arc of grief—at the end, it does get better. The phrase “Death by Rock and Roll,” is very important, because it was something Kato used to say, and a motto that we lived our lives by. We had a recording of Kato’s footsteps, and the record begins with that sound. We play that every show, like he’s walking onstage with us.” 

TPR have a batch of headlining tour dates this month along with some festival dates. Beginning in July, they're teaming with Halestorm for a co-headlining tour. A full list of upcoming TPR dates can be found at DeathByRockAndRoll.com.

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Erica Banas is a rock/classic rock news blogger who's well versed in etiquette and extraordinarily nice.