Grymm KittyHeavy metal music is amorphous, fluid, ever-changing. One thing most metalheads love about the music is that there are no real rules to follow. Metal bands also love the “No Rules” aesthetic of heavy music1. But whether or not they’re aware of it, there is one cardinal rule that just about every metal musician out there adheres to: you never, repeat, never fuck over your fans. I don’t mean changing genres on a whim, or abandoning a tried-and-true sound for greener, greedier passages. I’m talking about taking advantage of the goodwill and adoration of your fanbase, using them for your own selfish purposes. Again, most metal musicians are very thankful for the fans they have. The fans indirectly feed them, put gas in their touring vans, allow them to put t-shirts on the table, and ultimately pursue the career [hobby – AMG] that they love the most, and they are always appreciative for that.

Sadly, Nachtmystium mainman Blake Judd is not one of those people.

But first, a few admissions. I was a fan of Nachtmystium‘s earlier records (namely the two Black Meddle albums).  I converted friends of mine to them based on “Every Last Drop” and its powerful video. However, I was also aware of Blake’s history of heavy drug use and his screwing over of his family, friends, former band members, and even his fans, which led to his arrest for theft in October of 2013. Shortly after his release, he made a Facebook post (shown via Metal Injection) where he claimed to have dried up, and was looking to put Nachtmystium to rest with one final album, which ended up being The World We Left Behind. I’ll admit, knowing of Blake’s history made it a bit difficult to separate art from artist, but I also know too well about the struggles of addiction, as a member of my own family went through something similar with the non-stop lying and scheming for their next cocaine fix. Thankfully, this family member turned their life around, and we’ve never been closer. So, separating art from artist, and curious to see if Blake found focus and can claim redemption, I gave The World We Left Behind a fair shot.  Sadly, I wasn’t impressed at all.

Nachtmystium 2014

Which leads to my second admission: the review that ended up on Angry Metal Guy was not the original review. See, I keep a notepad (yes, pen and paper) with me, and I jot down thoughts and experiences from my listening to promos while riding public transit to and from work. That way, when I’m home, I can sit at my computer and bang out the review. My notes listed The World as sounding “tired,” “confused,” and of Blake “wanting (Nachtmystium) to fucking end already so he can leave it behind permanently,” and there were allusions that maybe Blake’s new band, Hate Meditation, will ignite a spark for Blake to continue on his path to sobriety with a better focus.

That was, until news hit me that Blake would continue Nachtmystium as mostly a non-touring solo project the weekend of The World‘s release, and mere hours before I was set to type up my review (it still would have been a 2.0, for the record). My reaction was a combination of shock, disbelief, and me wanting to throw my fucking keyboard through a wall. What got me, though, was the timing raised a giant red flag, which screamed to me that this was a contractual obligation with Century Media so Blake could get a better record deal elsewhere for more money. I even called him on it near the end of the review.

Nachtmystium - Blake Judd B&WBut despite what was going on with the record, what was happening on the outside was flat-out sad. In preparation for the review, I followed Nachtmystium‘s Facebook page (which is since deactivated… more on that later) to follow up on Blake’s decision to continue the band and his next course of action. However, instead of band activities, I was treated to a list of used vinyls for sale, with the cheapest being $50, to be sent via PayPal or wired directly. Here we fucking go again, I thought, and sadly it was accurate. More vinyls went on sale. A fire sale for the artwork of The World We Left Behind was put up to fund the album’s artist (and Blake’s fiance) Ashley Sumner, to help with her medical bills. None of these things were actually delivered. People started calling Blake out for screwing them over. Pre-orders for The World We Left Behind went unfulfilled, with angry messages from Blake himself giving bullshit excuses. People were getting deleted off the message posts and blocked from the band page. Groups of fans formed an anti-Blake/anti-Nachtmystium awareness page to get justice for being ripped off, and in its ranks are former friends and bandmates, including those who played on The World We Left Behind, and containing pics of Judd that shows that being clean is nowhere near on Blake’s agenda. And finally, one by one, the Nachtmystium band page, as well as the personal pages for Blake and Ashley, disappeared without a trace.

I can understand and empathize with metal fans in wanting people to redeem themselves. Blake Judd, however, is beyond redemption. $50-$400 a record may seem like a steal to Blake, but for the average fan, $400 is a weekly paycheck, and it went directly into Blake’s arm or crack pipe. As for his career, let’s face it, he’s fucked. No record company will want to touch him with a ten-foot pole while wearing Hazmat gear, musicians and bands are turning their backs on him, he was kicked out of the black metal supergroup Twilight due to his prior actions, and if he ever tours again, he’ll end up facing down some nasty, and possibly violent, confrontations from those he’s screwed over. There is no going back for him, and the world he and Ashley did leave behind was a major clusterfuck of epic proportions.

judd-mugshotCentury Media, as of today, confirmed my suspicions of The World We Left Behind being a contractual obligation, and is making good with the pre-orders that Blake promised on the Nachtmystium Facebook page, so the fans that got duped by him can at least get their merch that they ordered (which I’m very sure CM is quite happy to part with, given the circumstances). This is awesome of Century Media to do. Also, former Nachtmystium guitarist (now with the incredible Wolvhammer) Jeff Wilson promised to print up Nachtmystium shirts that Blake promised earlier this year, for just the cost of shipping, though I don’t know who in their right mind would want to wear one at this point, but it’s a cool gesture on Jeff’s part. So despite the drama and thievery, there are people who are trying to do right by what Blake did. And for those who are still waiting for merch or refunds, definitely contact PayPal to see if you can get your money back at some capacity. If you’ve been the victim of Blake’s BS, you can contact the Internet Crime Complaint Center, and file a complaint against Blake Judd for wire and mail fraud. Given his probation from last year, this will likely see him put back behind bars.

I sympathize with Century Media, for inheriting such a public relations nightmare. I feel horrible for Blake’s recent bandmates for putting their faith and trust in him. I feel like shit for even giving The World We Left Behind any publicity whatsoever, even though I stated it was a huge disappointment. But I feel horrible mostly for the fans who put their stock literally into the arms of a failed hero, just to be let down hard. One thing that I can say with all due certainty is this:  if Blake somehow ends up making music again, you will not see it reviewed with my name attached, and I can assume that you won’t see it published on Angry Metal Guy.*

*OP’s Note:  Upon reading my post, I realized that, in my gut reaction to what has been going on with Blake Judd, heartfelt as it was, it came across as extremely righteous and vilifying to people struggling with addiction, and that is not my intent.  Addiction is very much like depression (which I suffer from), and like depression, it’s a nasty, nasty illness that can damage yourself and those around you significantly.  Thankfully, it can be treated with the right help.  If you know someone battling addiction, please find a way to intervene.  If YOU are battling addiction, and you are sincere to kick it permanently, it’s not too late to get yourself counseling and help.  There are people out there who have “put the miles in” (so to speak) who can assist you in your road to recovery.  If it can change someone in my family for the better, it can change you as well. -Grymm


Angry Metal Guy Speaks: On Empathy

Angry Metal Lisa“Blake Judd is beyond redemption.” Empathy is hard. Empathy is really hard. Watching the Nachtmystium saga from the outside—not as a fan at all, just as a guy connected to the metal scene—empathy for Blake Judd is really, really hard. But let me try to induce a little here; to offer a different perspective. But first: I’m not an apologist. What I will write here is in no way a justification for Judd’s bad behavior, neither does it somehow make him less culpable for having been a usurous asshole who has abused the little power he had in the world in order to feed his addiction. Judd deserves whatever happens to him legally, to be frank. It’s sad that it got to this point, the man is obviously nearing rock-bottom and should have had real treatment ages ago—but he likely hasn’t hit it yet, even though Century Media has cut all ties with him, he’s screwed over pretty every musician in Chicago who could possibly join his band, and everyone knows that he’s in a huge hole.

But watching the trainwreck doesn’t make me angry, mostly it makes me sad. People landing tightly in the grips of addiction are people who are in a really bad way—often times long before they get their hands on whatever their substance of choice is. Many people use drugs, a fraction of those people struggle with addiction. But the kind of driving beast that turns one into the kind of clawing, nasty creature that would burn every bridge for another fix isn’t a person I can feel a lot of hate for. I see a person who is suffering. Having watched people struggle with addictions—including heroin, which ultimately resulted in a death—I can’t help but see the desperation of a person who for whatever reason needs escape so badly. Opiates attract manic depressives, for example, and when one forms that habit and turns it into a coping mechanism for a world that is just fucking hard to live in for these people, you can see how this problem spirals out of control.

Doubly sad, it sounds like Judd is pushing himself towards the grave. As Kim Kelly said over on Twitter:

judd-kimkellytwitter

When one’s life gets to the point where people are wondering what one’s obituary will say, worries about whether or not Angry Metal Guy will ever produce a review of one’s records again probably seems pretty trivial. If the guy is truly in a serious downward spiral, it’s likely this is the last we’ll hear from him. He’ll join a chorus of snuffed out voices taken too early because of their addictions and dealers. Unfortunately, Judd’s spiral is happening before our eyes in real time, aided by social media and blogs.

Of course, we also know that prison isn’t really what addicts need [link (abstract) | link (pdf) | link]. In fact, prison isn’t good for addicts really at all. Most don’t get treatment, and what addicts need is intervention, counseling, and long-term rehab. That Judd’s actions got him to the point where prison is where he’s likely headed is tragic, because while he’s responsible for his crimes and his victims deserve justice, the prison system he will go into isn’t made to help him with the problems that led to his illegal behavior. Instead, the system is there to punish him for committing those crimes, regardless of the individual problematic. And while he may end up in clean while he’s in (though, that’s not certain), he’ll probably come out and revert to his previous usage patterns and levels, and if he doesn’t OD, then he’ll re-offend and we’ll rinse and repeat.

Ultimately, empathy or sympathy is hard for people who have been on the receiving end of Judd’s behavior. That there is a Facebook group dedicated to revenge hating on the guy pretty much shows that. Grymm‘s rage, shows that, too. But I, from the outside, have trouble not empathizing with a guy who’s obviously just completely fucked right now, and whose life skills seem to be “doing drugs to escape” and making metal. Now that the latter is probably done for good, what’s he got left? Prison and ostracization. I can’t help but hope this experience is a catalyst for change; but I guess more immediately, I hope we don’t need to write an Angry Metal Obituary.

Show 1 footnote

  1. I disagree with this analysis, see my forthcoming rant – AMG

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  • BrockieForPresident

    One of the best articles on AMG, Thanks, guys.

  • Jeremy Littleton

    I read your article. It’s good to see more press coverage on this. I could go on about his history and my history trolling him but the page I helped start, BlakeCrush, already has those details. While I agree with you that people should be empathetic to people with drug addiction issues the problem is for Blake is that he won’t recover. The horror stories that I’ve heard every time I go to Chicago speaks volumes. That said, he was ripping people off for a while. He has been doing this stuff before he became an addict.

    • I think the reason that it’s important for me, as an outsider, to say “have a little empathy” is because I’m an outsider. Having been around people like that—people who won’t change, people who are screwed up and impossible to deal with—I know that it’s basically impossible to feel for the guy.

      But his behavior is pretty sad when you start to think about it, and then I have trouble being angry. Not that he doesn’t deserve his punishment, not that his behavior is excusable. Just that he’s a dude who needs a lot of help—even if he maybe doesn’t deserve it.

      • Jeremy Littleton

        He’s always had a rock star attitude. You gotta remember he tells people he’s the greatest thing to happen to black metal since Euronymous.

        • Sure, but being a rockstar and an asshole doesn’t mean that you STEAL from people. I’ve met dudes with asshole, rockstar attitudes who were always good to their word, too. In the case of Judd there’s more going on.

          Maybe he’s a psychopath, at which point then I’m a sucker for trying to empathize. But unless someone can show me that the dude literally has no empathy and isn’t just being driven to do shit that he likely regrets and will regret in the long run, I stand by what I say.

    • Carlos Marrickvillian

      hmmm have you considered that starting a page or community dedicated to attacking somebody who is not a public, political figure or powerful in any meaningful way is a pretty twisted and sad activity? Judd may be a complete junkie asshole but to be honest your behaviour doesn’t seem much better…Perhaps the energy you’ve put into cyber hunting someone could be better directed in other areas.

      • Jeremy Littleton

        I agree with your assessment that I could have used the energy in something else and for the most part I do this about as much as I text so it varies each day. That said, the page really came about because the estimated daily amount he was earning was $1000 a day at one point. There is more to the story but all will be revealed in a few days but read the NWN forums.

        • Carlos Marrickvillian

          Alerting people to a scam and an online persecution campaign are two pretty different things. I agree with what AMG is saying below. The guy seems to be fucking himself over as much as he is others at the moment and a hate group seems as pointless as it is small and nasty. I don’t mean to troll you dude, but I just think you and your group need to step back from your anger and think about your own actions and choices rather than Bake Judds.

  • Al Tatts

    Kudos for your words on addiction and prison. Not a popular opinion, but one borne out by facts. Brave.

    • I appreciate that. It’s hard, ’cause dude should pay for his crimes. We either need way better treatment in prison, or we need to figure something else out.

  • DrChocolate

    This is just …. tragic really. Absolutely infuriating too. Just like addiction, it’s a serious, terrible thing. I’ve lost friends to heroin OD’s, watched people piss their lives away with alcohol, etc. It’s horrific to watch. Watching Blake just rot in his is just disgusting, I have the same mixed feelings of repulsion and empathy. Around the ‘Black Meddle’ period I really though Nachtmystium was the future. So many other great bands and musicians have suffered through ugly addictions, but I’ve never seen one quite self-destruct like this. Musical decline, weird rantings, ripping off the fans. In my 30+ years of metal, hell music, I don’t have anything to compare this too. Great, if unfortunately necessary, post gentlemen.

  • “People landing tightly in the grips of addiction are people who are in a
    really bad way—often times long before they get their hands on whatever
    their substance of choice is.”

    That’s a good point. Drug addiction is self-medication for past trauma. Blake Judd probably had a horrible childhood and he’s using drugs to cope. However, that’s still no excuse for being a lying, thieving asshole.

  • Post Nihilism

    So:
    1. one guy (allegedly, Centry Media did not comment whether Judd’s explanations are true or not) stole money from fans and this is a reason why his (future) records should not be reviewed and it is a shame for a fan to wear his t-shirt.
    2. the other guy burnt some churches (how cool is that! Satan! Satan!), claimed he killed someone and actually killed a friend from the band (how cool is that! trve bm!), was convinced for racism (hero! political correctness sucks!) and was suspected of planning acts of terrorism (beat that!). And it’s ok to wear his t-shirts, fans are pround to have tatoos and reviews of his music are everywhere.

    • Wait, what? On the article it’s clearly stated that one is a person that’s battling with an ailment or illness that’s actually crippling his life and career. And the other has been established by pretty much the entire rational world as a shitty human being. And even so, a case can be made to separate the art from the artist. But feel free to pass judgement of an entire community/scene/subgenre just because of your perceived notions of these bands fans.

      • dressiertugboat

        Yeah, I’m failing to see how this reference to Varg is at all relevant to this article. :/

        • I’m guessing he thought to imply that the same people that is outraged at a “few dollars” lost is the same people that is A-OK with arson, murder, terrorism and racism. And that is quite a stretch to make just because they are both black metal artists or I don’t know what.

          • Post Nihilism

            I don’t know what is a strech? They both are metal musicians (as artists) and they both have problems with the law and the social principles (as humans) In the case of Judd this caused a rather sharp reaction of the metal community (including announcements that “I won’t be listening to his records”), in the case of Varg people tend to separate the artist from the man (“I don’t share his views and don’t approve what he did or is doing, I’m interested only in his music “). As for me, it’s pretty blatant inconsistency.
            I don’t want to say which approach is right. People have their own conscience and beliefs and draw their own conclusions, but, please, just be consistent, because a double standard isn’t morality.

          • It is a stretch since you’re making generalizations of the community based in the reactions of a few. And surface reactions at that. Sure, there is a more vocal reaction because it’s an issue that people in the metal circle has deemed necessary for more people to know, because of its ongoing nature and it’s more likely to affect people in the community that is not in the know. For one, Judd has clearly taken advantage of his elevated profile in the metal community directly. While Vikernes doesn’t even care about “metal” anymore. You may not see this many thinkpieces about Vikernes and more outspoken disapproval but I don’t think that has nothing to do with double standards in the community.

    • I have never defended Varg Vikernes, and while others on here have reviewed his records against my wishes, I specifically go out of my way to NOT review his stuff and to avoid reviewing Nazi BM as a general rule.

      • Hutch Trugent

        because again – Blake’s actions are behaviors of an addict. Where as Varg is p.o.s. racist. That’s who he is as a person. Cheers, AMG

      • Post Nihilism

        It was not my intention to accuse anyone of promoting Varg and NSBM.
        I just noticed an inconsistency in the indignation of the metal world on Judd while fairly widespread acceptance of the presence of Varg. Of course, not everyone turned against Judd, just as not all support Burzum.
        To some extent, it looks that the fans like “bad guys”, provided that they are doing harm to someone else.

      • I reviewed one of Burzum’s albums, not because I support, endorse or respect Varg’s views, but because it was news and people were interested in what he was doing. He’s a twit though, no doubt about that.

        • I’ve never placed a blanket ban on it or anything, I just feel like we shouldn’t review nazi BM. I don’t feel like giving those guys my endorsement.

          • I hate Nazis. Especially Illinois Nazis!

          • Carlos Marrickvillian

            gold

  • I talked off a friend from buying a couple of the vinyls he was offering on his FB, he even chatted with him but the whole setup was a huge red flag for me. I told him to go with his gut, I assumed there was a reason he was asking for my opinion before jumping the gun, something on the back of his mind holding him back, and he finally backed off. Seeing the entire ruination of Judd’s character unfold on social media and the internet metal circle has been kind of surreal.

  • eloli

    My unpopular opinion:
    How about stopping being empathetic towards assholes who happen to produce good heavy metal?
    I mean, I remember being 13 an people going all out defending Vince Neil, as much as a Crüehead I was back then, I found the guy was an irredeemable asshole who literally got away with murder, and never changed. Same with Varg, a racist asshole and murderer who’s still a racist asshole who, given the chance, would probably beat the shit out of a significant part of my family.
    So really, cut the crap with “empathy” and “second chances”, fucking assholes are fucking assholes, no matter the music they make.
    If Blake Judd is found dead on a ditch tomorrow, I couldn’t give a flying fuck, the guy’s a fucking junkie and a thief.
    Really, talk about first world problems, how about empathizing with people who actually have really shitty lives and don’t have much of a choice about their problems?

    • I’m going to point out a number of errors and fallacious assumptions you make here.

      1) Empathizing with someone who has issues with addiction does not rule out empathizing with others in need. Turns out suffering isn’t a zero sum game and empathy isn’t an extremely limited resource.

      2) Addicts are also people in need, and drug use and serious addiction are often associated with other problems such as serious mental illness, trauma, poverty, etc.

      3) I have never said anything about giving Judd a second chance. I said that despite him being a fuckface, I think we need to give some consideration to the fact that his actions are contingent upon a specific type of problematic.

      4) I don’t agree that this is a “first world problem” (the fact that I’m getting a backache from a brand new armchair is a first world problem), but even if it is: first world problems are also problems.

      • eloli

        Fair enough.
        Having lost a cousin (he was actually found dead on a ditch, on another country, from an overdose), a co worker (I was the last person at work he talked to before dying) and a dear friend to drugs, I’m not insensitive towards drug issues, but still, I can’t find myself giving a flying fuck about Blake Judd, and the fact that the guy’s a major asshole doesn’t really help.
        Personally, I think we, as a subculture, tolerate way too much out of certain artists who are irredeemable assholes just because “they make great music, man, and that’s what matters. Some people are just irredeemable, pitying them is a waste of time.

        • Yeah. I guess for me, reading Grymm’s post, I felt like a counterpoint was necessary. I can’t in good conscience only rage. I need to have a point-counterpoint format when it comes to these kinds of discussions. Things are never so simple as “fuck ’em.” Or rarely so simple.

          • eloli

            Sadly, age has taught me that sometimes, things actually are so simple.

          • I did say “rarely.” I, too, have cut ties with certain people who were irredeemable. But that’s also why it’s important to be say it from the outside, because inside you can’t empathize.

    • DrChocolate

      Look, I don’t necessarily have a ‘direct’ sense of empathy towards the guy, but losing someone to addiction stays an open wound. It’s a slow, ugly form of suicide for that person. Being that person’s friend never gets better, until they do. I don’t know Blake personally, but watching someone slow kill themselves always brings back memories of my friends/family who did the same thing and thus I feel for his true friends and family. Additionally, if he suffers from severe depression (like my friend, or my wife’s uncle did) or another mental illness, addiction then becomes an entirely fucking different raging beast that can rarely be put back in the box. It’s tragic, not because he was/is a good songwriter, but because he’s a human. Frankly, too, I’m never going to apologize for having a general concern for the well-being of another human – regardless of talent.

      That being said, Varg is an asshole and I’ve never understood the tacit acceptance in the metal world of who he is, what he’s done and what he condones. Same goes for Gaahl, or Faust’s hate crimes. Or those asshats in Arghoslent who get a pass because of “the power of the riff.” Absurd too. I can’t really tolerate Inquisition either because I haven’t heard Dagon give a decent answer for all his connections to NS and the racist douches he’s associated with. Hell, you could even throw Blake in here too for his sketchy history with NS – but I can feel sympathy for those who may still love him and are watching him slowly kill himself.

      • eloli

        As I stated in another comment, I lost a cousin, a co worker and a dear friend to drugs, I’m not insensitive towards drug issues, but still, I can’t find myself giving a flying fuck about Blake Judd, and the fact that the guy’s a major asshole doesn’t really help.
        I can empathize with Blake’s family and friends (I’ve been there myself), but the guy, no, he can drop dead for all that I care.
        Funny you bring the depression issue, since it runs rampant in my mother’s side of the family and, having been heavily medicated at some points in my life and still being treated with antidepressants, I know a thing or two about the subject.
        True, depression is a very serious mental illness, and there is a time when without medication and treatment you just can’t function as a normal human being.
        But the flip side of this is that at some point, when you’re better, there’s an element of choice: you can choose to continue your treatment and change your lifestyle, or relapse eventually.
        Some of my relatives (I like to say I’m one of them) treat their illness as a very serious issue and, to function as normal, productive human beings, take responsibility on themselves, others, not as much, and eventually become a burden.
        I had a major depression in my early 30s, my brother had one in his mid 20s.
        We didn’t blow the chances people gave us back then.
        How many chances has Blake Judd blown at this point?

        That’s also the reason I can’t care about the guy.
        Regarding NS pieces of shit who give our subculture such a bad name, I couldn’t agree more with you.

        • DrChocolate

          Oh don’t get me wrong, Blake appears to be an asshole of the highest order and thus I think you hit the nail on the head regarding his second chances being up. I too have suffered from some serious depression/anxiety and I’m eternally grateful for the people who helped me through my second and third chances. I too had to accept those chances and make the appropriate choices to do so. With Blake however, it just shows you can only burn your bridges so many times – regardless of your issues. With the way metal has turned on him it just speaks to how badly he has razed all his ‘fan capital’ to the ground. Even outside of metal I don’t know if I’ve ever seen an artist implode like this, in this way. It’s not necessarily that I care for the man, but more I pity the loss of a man and his talent.

  • Felipe Mendes Tacla

    A really interesting and well-written article; I don’t even really know the band or the artist being criticized/analysed but I can easily relate to both points of view — the anger and the empathy, the loss and the hope. It’s a difficult situation anyway, and when you are closer to it I know it can affect your reasoning entirely (my brother is deeply problematic in several aspects close to Judd’s issues, and my feelings are closer to hatred and disgust than with any king of … sympathy, I must admit regretfully.) Thanks for the perspective(s). It’s for insightful and meaningful texts as this that I access AMG every single day (generally speaking).

  • Hutch Trugent

    in dealing with humans in general, but especially those with mental illness or addiction (or a dual diagnosis of both), it becomes especially important to separate the behaviors from the person. This article did a fantastic job of approaching this situation with that discriminating, empathetic mindset. I do not know where Blake is in his downward spiral towards rock bottom. And, not caring about Nachtmystium that much, it doesn’t impact my life necessarily. But, using it as a tool to examine the record business (the label of Century Media) and how it approaches these situations; and, how, as a sub-culture, we treat our own, regardless of their level of success. Watching this article process the natural reaction and the continued decisions associated, it provoked my own opinions on this. *(i also agree with the prison sentiments). One day, this may be a musician whom i do care about greatly, or at least spent a bunch of money on their merch. At that point, it becomes increasingly important to realize that actions of the individual and behavior’s sparked by addiction and depression. One could be the drastic thievery of a heroin addict. Of it could be someone, oh i don’t know, let’s say me, whose therapist is pushing to be more assertive to battle depression/anxiety. Coming from NOT being assertive at all; it may take me a few weeks to find the correct balance. So in the first few weeks, i may be over assertive – i.e, a big fucking dick to my friends that are pushy. But that big dick behavior isn’t me as a person, it is my behavior as a drunk or a man with an illness trying to find proper grounds. Cheers to the article good men.

  • AnimalShenanigans

    Thank you for this post. I’ve watched my now ex-girlfriend’s mother die from a crippling heroin addiction. You’re bang on about prison too; here in Canada, it’s apparently easier to get heroin on the inside. Prison punished her for petty theft, but in no way rehabilitated her. I felt the same gut reaction as Grymm as her addiction costed the family their house, their possessions, their sanity, and their solidarity as a family unit. Personally, I got shot into credit card debt (“helping” addicts financially is a stupid plan), had my car wrecked in what I believe was retaliation for unpaid debts (she had quite a few), and held my ex-girlfriend as she cried after her mother outright attacked her for not being given twenty fucking dollars. Then, in the hospital, as she was taken off life support, surrounded by people who cared about her, each of whom she’d betrayed, all everyone wanted was for her to not leave us all. If I didn’t have that experience, I’d be one of those people posting on NWN agreeing with those who were ripped off and want to put Judd’s teeth down his throat. After having that experience though, I’m 100% in line with AMG. The worst part is, sometimes the person you loved shows themselves, just for a moment, to remind you that somewhere, they’re still there. Those who loved Nachtmystium will get glimpses of their hero, and it will hurt more and more to see him fade. Yeah, getting addicted to drugs is pretty dumb. Ripping off those who trusted and care about you is beyond shitty. But these people are still the people we’ve respected, idolized, and loved sometime in our lives. They turned to the worst solution for their problems, and simply punishing them just gives them MORE reason to abuse their escape of choice. Hopefully Judd has someone left who can be there, who can show him that he doesn’t need heroin. Hell, tie him to a fucking chair and feed him until he’s clean. It’s better than the alternative.

  • Again, I want to be very careful in how I’m wording this but: dude sounds like he’s a complete mess. And frankly, it sounds like he’s been a complete mess for a long time. That anyone actually worked with his ass is pretty amazing to me, since that kind of bullshit is the kind of bullshit that ends bands and friendships real quickly. Reading Neill’s post makes me surprised that he even continued to show up; seems to me like the kind of dude you stop sending money to.

    But seeing that he’s a fuck who shouldn’t get my money and also empathizing with the fact that he’s completely consumed in addiction and likely was a big ol’ mess before he even got his hands on the drugs are two different things. I don’t think they are mutually exclusive.

    Thanks for linking it, though. Interesting perspective.

  • One more thought: he threw her and she broke her fucking leg? What the fuck? Like, so he’s not only a narcissist and a drug addict, but he also fucking “threw” his ex-wife and broke her fucking leg? There’s basically nothing you can say to defend this dude.

    • Jeremy Littleton

      Yeah. Like I said you guys are right with your assessment of my opinion but it’s tough to go to Chicago without hearing about him. It’s become an inside joke almost. I am guilty of wearing my BlakeCrush shirt to shows so that doesn’t help. One of the last, but confirmed true, rumors was he didn’t like the drugs he bought so he yelled “white power” in the street of an area of Chicago that isn’t great. Best way to describe it: pulled over to fix something in my car, guy walking his dog walks by and says, “white boy, if you don’t leave here now, some of the people on this street will kill you”

    • A junkie, an asshole AND a wife beater (allegedly). Dude hit the scumbag trifecta.

    • Grymm

      Yeah, I was starting to show a little sympathy for him before reading that. If it’s true (and everything else seems to be legit), my opinion stands.

      You don’t do that to your wife or significant other, or your kids for that matter (which, thankfully, he doesn’t have).