MUSIC: THE AUTUMN MIXTAPES 3
“Hold me in a dim-lit world”: How Dayseeker’s DARK SUN (2022) became my refuge from grief
by MERCY FERRARS
“Effortless, the way you left me.”
Unlike transient human bonds that tend to bleed their way into my life at the least fitting junctures, new music typically finds me in the right place at the right time.
“Hold me in a dim-lit world
So I can learn how bad it hurts”
For months, Dayseeker had lingered on the periphery of my musical radar.
However, amidst the emotional rollercoaster this year has ushered in—oscillating between euphoric highs and the abyss of depression—I allowed many of my musical aspirations to fade into oblivion.
“So how do I live in a dreamstate? When nothing is real when I’m awake?”
But by the time November unfolded, with the bleak winds of my own recent heartbreak echoing through the digital void in the form of emo tweets, one solitary track from Dayseeker’s 2022 record, DARK SUN, had become the first song to be played each day on the way to work and everywhere else. “Crying While You’re Dancing,” on repeat, gradually solidified Dayseeker as my top-listened artist of the past few weeks.
“Meet me where the lines blur together
It’s 4 a.m. and I can’t sleep
You make me feel homesick”
Once again, I seek refuge in music to navigate my grief of severing yet another connection, of seeing yet another sun go dark. A lifetime of waiting, sitting, hoping, a lifetime of feeling unwanted, insufficient. A lifetime of sensing the lover within me slowly fading away amidst the trauma.
A lifetime of bearing the weight of it all. As DARK SUN washes over me from beginning to end, the trauma and grief accumulated over a lifetime find resonance with 1.2 million kindred spirits. In a world populated by 8 billion, it often feels as if I am an isolated island nobody wants to dwell on for long. “To be able to tell apart the fine line between resilience and living is to understand the violence that seeps from my long-lost suns,” I tweeted last night. Ironically, I’ve made of myself a “sunkiller,” in my writing and my art, penning verses about extinguishing my own suns, while Dayseeker releases an album bearing the title DARK SUN, and grief is at the heart of it all.
“So take me in the afterglow”
Afterglow (Hazel’s Song)
Returning to the pivotal track that initiated my curiosity, “Crying While You’re Dancing” seamlessly blends ‘80s disco homage with metalcore influences. It transports me into a dream world reminiscent of Hurts’ “Lights,” a place where I’m swept away into a dreamscape of dancing, loving, and weeping in equal measure.
In this surreal world, as in my own, the act of crying while dancing has been a frequent occurrence. There have been more instances than I care to tally, but amidst the collective euphoria, a smile masks the silent tears.
“Crying While You’re Dancing” captures the essence of the dancefloor, yet also channels the profound sentimentality of intense emotions often surging within the nurture of a joyous space, where heartbreak resonates the loudest amidst the cheers from others.
“Now you’re coming down and falling fast
Where you end up, you’ll break like you are made of glass”
CRYING WHILE YOU’RE DANCING
In the aftermath of those nights, once the intoxicating rush of dopamine wanes, I find myself incapacitated in my own solitude, leaving me unable to leave the bed, holding on to my heart as I cry into my pillows. Suddenly the prospect of seeking that same euphoria appears futile, it all feels so empty I could scream.
I’m indeed falling fast and rising even faster.
Effortless, the way you left me.
EDITED BY LARA HELENA.
Mercy Ferrars is a MA graduate in philosophy and writes fiction, poetry and non-fiction essays. She is madly in love with Scotland, dogs and Bojack Horseman.