Trigger warning: Discussion of alcoholism and addiction
As part of the magazine’s April Big Read cover story, the pair spoke about how Kerr became sober in 2019 after drink and drugs “destroyed” him after using them to relieve the suffocating pressures touring brought on.
“There are people in my life now who have got sober, and now helping crack addicts. It’s amazing,” Kerr told NME. “Someone reached out to me that way. I feel like I have a responsibility to myself through lyric-writing. It was important to me to be open about it, because I know I’m not alone in these experiences. I had the confidence to do that because I was clean and sober.”
Speaking shortly before Royal Blood’s latest LP, Typhoons, came out, Kerr explained how he felt many didn’t recognise sobriety as an option, and he hoped the new album would share his experiences and illustrate them as: “poetic enough to not be crass.”
“I wish I knew more about it as I was doing it though, that’s the only thing,” he said. “Having spoken to some people who haven’t been successful and relapse quite a lot, there are some things to avoid and bits of knowledge I wish I had from the beginning.”
Talking of his experiences getting help, Kerr addressed the issue of drinking being engrained in UK culture, and how some people don’t accept help for fear it undermines who they are.
“I guess I had to realise that it isn’t the same for everyone else. It can be a very lonely experience because you can be the only one doing it, especially in our country where drinking is a part of our culture, you know? It’s so engrained — especially with guys. There’s a macho thing to it.”
For more on Kerr’s journey, visit NME for the full Big Read cover interview.
For help, advice and information on addiction and sobriety, visit Smart Recovery.
Featured image: Guitar World