What I Live For (2020)

Blue October’s 10th studio album is about fighting for those you love, living with depression, and how marriage is actually work–not matter how long you’ve been together. Blue October continues to write personal & moving lyrics, focusing on the journey of living through depression.

Hearing Blue for the first time

As a super-fan, I’m forever devoted, and in love with, Blue October. Period. For my family members–my mom and my dad, as well as my sister–they’ve put up with my growing obsession with this rock/alternative band.

I first came to Blue October’s lyrics in 2008, back when I was in high school. (I think I was in like 10th grade, but who’s counting?)

In those days, I was struggling with my depression and anxiety. While I was talking about it with my parents, it was still something I thought that I could handle on my own. I wasn’t on antidepressants or anti-anxiety medications yet, which shocks me. I could’ve been so much happier back then. (But, I’m very glad that I went on an anti-depressant/anti-anxiety medication when I did. It changed my life.)

Blue October made me feel less alone. Especially the darker songs. I was at times in a bad place, and Blue October’s songs about depression helped me feel less alone. I felt like someone understood what it was like to have sudden dark thoughts pop up in your head.

Listening to Blue October Now

Now, many years later, I am so much happier. While I still get depressed, the moments are just that: moments. Little blips in my brain.

Blue October’s lead singer, Justin Furstenfeld, is also in a better place. His songs are much calmer, more positive. There are fans who believe that the older songs are better, but I disagree: I love the new sound that Blue October has created for themselves.

Listening to the newer albums from Blue, I feel like it reflects the happiness and inner peace that I now feel inside. It’s a comforting feeling, to have music that reflects your innermost thoughts.

What I Live For: An Honest Look At Depression

Justin Furstenfeld wanted to create an album where he talks to his depression.

Now that he’s in a better, much healthier place, he can approach his depression in a much healthier way. This album is the response that he has to his depression.

At first, the album starts off in a really dark place, because that’s just what depression does: It tells you lies. Your family will be better off without you. You should definitely kill yourself, you’ll feel better if you do.

Depression is a weird disease. You can be perfectly fine, and then your brain will decide that you should be thinking of killing yourself. Or, less dramatically, that you should isolate or push people away who love you the most. I’ve lived with depression since early junior high. I’m almost 30 years old now.

Justin talks to his depression as though it were someone he was in a relationship with. While this might sound odd, it actually makes perfect sense. Your depression is almost like another person that surfaces when you’re feeling down, when you’re at your lowest. You aren’t yourself when you’re depressed.

As the album progresses, Justin reaches an understanding with his depression. He comes out stronger, and happier, on the other side.

Final Thoughts

I love this album. It’s a perfect example of how you fight through your depression, and focus on what matters the most: your family and your spouse. It’s a cathartic album for me, because I understand what it’s like to have depression, and what it’s like to fight for the people I love instead of getting bogged down in my mental illness.

Rating: 5 out of 5.

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