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nothing, nowhere. talks coexisting with the void

Despite being relatively content with the height that he’s reached, nothing, nowhere., also known as Joe Mulherin, hasn’t forgotten where he came from. Hotly anticipated on the heels of Trauma Factory‘s success in 2021, new record VOID ETERNAL serves as a jarring reminder that even when you’ve come up for air, it’s not always easy to keep your head above water. The full-length is Mulherin’s darkest yet, and certainly his heaviest, in his earnest struggle not to let his trauma pull him under.

“I use music as a positive outlet to put my emotions into,” Mulherin asserts. “And as I’ve healed, as the years go on, I’ve gotten more of a grip on my mental illness and my mental health. But I look back in retrospect with a lot of anger sometimes that I still hold for the years I was lost. When I was writing this record, I was upset, because it’s like: ‘Why do I have to deal with panic disorders and depression?’ I needed somewhere to put that anger, and the album is reflective of that.”

Mulherin accepts in this chapter of nothing, nowhere. that he can’t escape the darkness, and VOID ETERNAL has the intention of learning to coexist with it. An album as leaded and raw as VOID ETERNAL doesn’t emerge out of thin air; a magnifying glass on Mulherin’s past reveals that his roots can be traced back to growing up in the hardcore scene. Of course, what Mulherin brings to the table on the record isn’t pure to any genre that he’s been influenced by, be it metal, punk, rock or hip hop, but his brand of all them tightly binding together the sound of his cathartic introspection. What you hear on VOID ETERNAL has been peppered throughout previous issues (see most recent example ‘death’ on Trauma Factory), but it took until now for the full shape of it to materialise out of the shadows.

“I’ve really wanted to make a heavy record for years and I’ve actually recorded heavy music,” he admits, “but I never released it. So I mean, I’ve been making heavy music my whole life and was in like, local hardcore bands growing up, and it just felt like the next step.” 

“I look back in retrospect with a lot of anger sometimes that I still hold for the years I was lost.”

The way he describes it is “in your face and energetic,” although he caveats that lyrically, the outcome is bleak. “I’ll be honest, the album doesn’t really offer any profound solutions to people’s problems,” he concludes. “It’s more of just like, ‘Hey, we’re all going through shit. Life kind of sucks sometimes, let’s just scream about it together.’”

Such is the magic of music that the offering of solidarity is enough to sustain the community that comes together to celebrate it. For Mulherin, the artists that feature on this album did for him what his music is now doing for others, from Silverstein (‘THIRST4VIOLENCE’) to Fall Out Boy (‘CYAN1DE’)  to Underoath (‘VEN0M’).

“I was already friends with a lot of people on the record,” Mulherin explains, “but mostly because they’re artists that I love listening to. I think everyone on the record, those bands and artists, they make great music and I’m in a position where I get to say, ‘Hey, these are my favourite musicians. I want them on my record.’ And thankfully everyone was down. It’s a unique kind of place to be in, where you can put your favourite band on your own record.” 

Touring VOID ETERNAL, he won’t say no to jumping onstage with other artists on the album. “I’m sure they’ll come out and do their part. nothing, nowhere.’s gonna be like the DJ Khaled of alternative music,” he jokes. “I feel like alternative music was kind of missing that collaborative aspect.”

It’s clear not just to Mulherin but also to the industry and his audiences that nothing, nowhere. as a project is only elevating, evidenced from first reactions to his new material live at his shows down under earlier this year. 

“I was seeing people react to those songs for the first time,” he recalls. “It was cool to see how much the energy kicks up with the new songs, and that’s exactly what I was looking forward to.”

As for what’s next, Mulherin is living in the silver lining he could only dream of when he first started releasing music – but that’s not going to stop him from continuing to make it. “When these shows are over,” he concludes, “it’s time to walk into the studio and just keep doing what I do.”

VOID ETERNAL is out now.