Shinedown frontman Brent Smith opened up about relapsing before writing the band’s latest album, 2018’s Attention Attention.
Smith touched on how Attention Attention was the first Shinedown album he wrote completely sober, however, he detailed his journey to sobriety and said, “Right before ‘Threat to Survival’ was released, from right around 2014 leading into 2015, I had a slip, man. I had been on the road in the ‘Amaryllis’ cycle, and two years straight, I lost a ton of weight. I had just become a different person, in a good way, but there was so much regiment to it. I was so scheduled. I was a machine! All of a sudden, what happened was it stopped, and all of a sudden I was supposed to be domesticated. I didn’t know how to function, and I slipped. I’m human.”
Smith continued, “…That 19 months of touring, that record ‘Threat to Survival,’ I had to come back. That entire cycle I was withdrawing. I found myself in such a dark place, and I’m surprised I made it out.
Smith credits his bandmates for getting back on the wagon and said, “But the three guys I’m in a band with, they never judged me. They were like, ‘We’re not cops, dude. We’re here to support you, but dude, you have got to get it together, man.’ And it was a struggle! What’s incredible about this, though, is that I was at my lowest point. I couldn’t have got lower. I’ve never really formally talked about this, but it is true.”
Smith continued, “And the interesting thing was is that once again my brothers – Barry [Kerch], Zach [Myers] and Eric [Bass] – they supported me through it all, and my son did, too. It showed a side of me that I’m not invincible and what happened inside of that was we were able to create ‘Attention Attention.’ One thing that Eric has said before, because he was with me every step of the way, because he produced the album, mixed the album, and engineered the album…everything was written sober. Everything was performed sober. I used to think I had to be messed up to write messed up songs. Couldn’t be further from the truth.”
Shinedown is currently on tour with Badflower, Dinosaur Pile-Up and Broken Hands. A list of their upcoming tour dates can be found at Shinedown.com.
This interview can be heard in its entirety below.