The World Health Organization estimates that over 300 million people are living with depression. Yet the subject of mental illness remains a taboo topic in our society, particularly for men, who are often told to “man up” when feelings of hopelessness or suicidal thoughts occupy their minds. SLANG (FKA Dan Dare; Brutality) knows all too well what it means to feel lost, and he’s using his music to help others struggling with mental health concerns (while also working through his own obstacles).
SLANG was born in Southall, a suburb in West London. The producer recalls being inundated with negative thoughts and grief but not understanding the cause of his emotions.
“My thing with depression and anxiety is that I didn’t know what it was. It was in me, you know? I was just like, like, ‘what is this that I’m feeling? Why do I feel like this?,” he tells Uproxx’s Dara Safvatnia.
SLANG felt alone, but his plight is not uncommon, though it’s not often spoken about. One in eight men is diagnosed with a psychological condition such as depression, anxiety, panic disorder or obsessive compulsive disorder.
“When [SLANG] first came, he was very suicidal, extremely depressed, unable to focus or concentrate on anything else apart from the negative, spiraling thoughts,” says hypnotherapist Malminder Gill.