Baltimore-based quintet Sharptooth have dropped an honest, enraged new standalone single, "Mean Brain," ahead of their imminent fall tour. It's not unusual for the rising hardcore group's powerhouse vocalist Lauren Kashan to sing — and scream — about heavy topics, from personal trauma to marginalized voices in the heavy-music scene. "Mean Brain" follows suit, with Kashan addressing mental illness in raw, explosive lyrics like: "Why do I feel justified in/Self talk that just leaves me wounded?/I would never speak to someone else/The way that I talk to myself."
"I think everyone, particularly those of us with mental illness, can relate to the experience of beating ourselves up, and getting stuck in those negative thought patterns," explains Kashan. "They're a blend of our deepest fears in the hands of our harshest inner critic, and when left unchecked can lead to seriously painful self-loathing and a distorted view of our place in the world. But we are not our thoughts or our feelings. They are part of our experience, but they don't have to define us. For me, the first step to finding compassion for myself was to acknowledge those negative thought patterns for what they are — not facts, just my brain being mean to me."
Sharptooth always sit on the aggressive side of the fence, but this new track is particularly ferocious. It's also the first new music from Sharptooth — rounded out by guitarists Keith Higgins and Lance Donati, bassist Peter Bruno and drummer Matt Hague — since 2017, when they released their acclaimed debut album, Clever Girl. "I'm incredibly stoked to share new music," Kashan enthuses. "I think we're long overdue to get to broadcast our evolution to the world."
She adds, "For me, the vocals on 'Mean Brain' are some of my favorite that I've ever recorded. I loved getting to experiment with my range. It's also a nice little 'fuck you' to anyone out there who thinks 'all female vocalists sound the same.' I barely sound the same from the beginning to the end of this song. So they can kiss my perfect ass."
Indeed. Check out the itinerary of Sharptooth's upcoming headline run with LIMBS and Wristmeetrazor below.
Sharptooth tour dates:
11.08 - Chesapeake, VA @ Riffhouse
11.09 - Frederick, MD @ Cafe 611
11.10 - Brooklyn, NY @ Kingsland
11.11 - Philadelphia, PA @ Creep Records
11.12 - Providence, RI @ Alchemy
11.13 - Manchester, NH @ Jewel Music Venue
11.14 - Quebec City, QC @ L'Anti
11.15 - London, ON @ Call The Office
11.16 - Toronto, ON @ Sneaky Dees
11.17 - Buffalo, NY @ Casa Di Francescas
11.18 - Hamtramck, MI @ The Sanctuary
11.19 - Chicago, IL @ Cobra Lounge
11.20 - Nashville, TN @ The End
11.21 - St. Louis, MO @ Fubar
11.23 - Indianpolis, IN @ Healer
11.24 - Lancaster, PA @ Lizard Lounge