By NICK McCOY
Tiger Media Network
Warning: This article discusses topics such as suicide and self-harm. Discretion is advised.
Topics such as suicide, self-harm, and mental health are very common in many forms of music. It makes total sense, and goes along with music’s nature as a means of expressing one’s emotions. As such, songs meant to uplift and help those dealing with such thoughts have become more and more prevalent, especially with the increased awareness of mental health issues.
From the various songs of this nature, from bands such as Linkin Park, All American Rejects, Korn, and many others, I want to shine a spotlight on a more recent band; A band that has already created one of the best songs of this caliber. That band is Badflower, and the song is “Ghost.”
Badflower was formed in 2013 in Los Angeles, California. The band consists of lead vocalist and rhythm guitarist Josh Katz, lead guitarist Joey Morrow, bassist Alex Espiritu and drummer Anthony Sonetti. They would first release their EP “Temper” in 2016, earning Artist of the Week from Apple Music, before releasing their first full-length studio album, “OK, I’m Sick”, in 2019. This would be followed by their second album, “This is How the World Ends”, in 2021. A post-grunge and hard rock group, Badflower’s songs deal with many subjects, namely mental health, self-hatred, and suicide.
Suicide is what forms the basis for the band’s most widely recognized song, “Ghost.” Released as a single off of “OK, I’m Sick”, “Ghost” is a brutal, heart-wrenching song about suicide. Josh Katz was inspired to write the song after having several panic attacks on tour, which eventually led to thoughts of self-harm.
The song begins with a gentle guitar melody from Morrow, along with Katz’s haunting vocals. From the very beginning, the lyrics of “Ghost” do not pull any punches; vividly painting a picture of a depressed man attempting to take his own life. The song follows the man through failed suicide attempts, and his regrets about the friends and family he’ll live behind, and how he “didn’t really want to die”. The song then explodes into its chorus, with Katz’s vocals and lyrics sounding like a cry for help from the protagonist. A major part of this song is the feelings of regret that come with causing harm to yourself, and how suicide will effect your family and loved ones. It is an incredibly tragic, but ultimately uplifting tune; showing how you’re never alone, and how there are people who actually care about you.
“Ghost” is not only an amazing song by a great up-and-coming band, but also a song with a great message behind it. It’s meant to lift those up who may be having those thoughts, and to show that suicide is not the answer. The song’s themes is best described by a quote at the beginning of the music video: “Suicide doesn’t end the chances of life getting worse. It eliminates the possibility of it ever getting better.”