For multi-instrumentalist, vocalist, and songwriter Crywolf, this day has been long overdue. Justin Phillips experienced a major setback during the creation of his new artistic concept album after getting his computer gear stolen, which has an entire album’s worth of music inside.
“It was devastating,” he told Riverbeats. “It wasn’t only a year of new music, it was 7 years of photos, writing, years of project files for older music… I think it made me more comfortable with putting a lot of frustration into the new music. That’s a common theme in a lot of my stuff now. Frustration with life.”
Now Crywolf has finally risen above the setback for a moving 16-track project, titled widow [OBLIVIØN Pt. I]. The album arrives as the first in a two-pronged project and marks his first full-length release since 2015’s Cataclysm. As Phillips delves into the void of oblivion, he touches on extremely personal topics, including depression, anxiety, and psychosis. Crywolf calls the album his most “honest work yet.”
“This album is my dive into my unconscious self,” says Phillips of the project. “A narrow-beamed flashlight illuminating creatures on the sea floor… a strange mixture of dread and familiarity. I shed a fair share of blood, sweat, and tears over the two years it took to make this thing… and I also shed parts of myself.”
Crywolf has been teasing the album for some time, with the consecutive releases of “DRIP” and “CEPHALØTUS,” along with three other previous tracks released in 2018. Now marks the culmination of a project that has been years in the making.
“To be honest, I barely recognize the fragmented figure that widow represents,” he continues. “The first half of the OBLIVIØN series is the only relic I have to remember him by. Mangled, but poignant. A sort of exuvium; left behind to remind me where I came from, and provide a blueprint for what lays ahead.”