EREN ÖĞRÜL
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Death Metal Sleep Therapy

May 31, 2020

I got my first computer in 1999. Before having it, I had an old computer magazine from 1997 that I got from my neighbor and a box of empty 3.5” floppy disks to be used one day. I ended up with so many useless floppy disks that I was dreaming of copying PC games to them to play every night on my computer. And floppy disks were the only way that at least I could partially make my dream come true. Because I could afford to buy them and it was giving me a feeling of peace not to have a computer. Each month I was buying a floppy disk, a sticker, and a cover with my pocket money. I was writing a game name I saw on the computer magazine on each label. And imagined I was playing it on my computer. That was my monthly routine, and it was there until I had my first computer.

The computer my family bought came with a three-year-long unlimited internet pack, and that changed everything. I was still paying games, but I was spending more time on the internet than the games each day. And one day, I ended up in mp3.com. I don't exactly remember if I was searching for music or something else, but mp3.com was a website for me to explore months and months. I didn't know any genre or any band; I didn't know what to look for, and I somehow found Amorphis. Tounela was recently released, and Greed was available for download. I did download it, and it took a couple of hours with a 33.3k modem. Around midnight, I was listening to it. It is the first time I introduced myself to death metal. I had very mixed feelings while listening to it, but I was so hooked to it. I heard to Greed the whole night, and I didn't turn it off while I was sleeping.

In the morning, I searched for more bands and put more songs into my download queue. Against All Authority (punk), Catholic School Girls (punk), The Ataris (punk), Punchbuggy (punk) and some death metal bands that were available in mp3.com at that time -I don't remember the names anymore. My routine changed from dreaming games to downloading new songs from mp3.com. And listened to them the whole night even when I was in bed and sleeping. I do understand if you couldn't listen to death metal while sleeping, but I did it every night. Later on, it became a habit. This time I was listening to Napalm Death (grindcore), Immortal (black metal), Carcass, Death, Obituary, or Morbid Angel. And I was going to bed while Barney was screaming The Infiltrator two meters away from my bed.

Napalm Death

As time goes by, I found these kinds of music calming me down, making me very focused and giving me the power I needed during rough times. If something went wrong, I was listening to them. If I needed to vent out the anger inside me, I was listening to them. If I was happy, I was still listening to them. And they were providing free therapy whenever I was in need, which is something I couldn't ask from anyone. Did it work? I don't know. What I do know, I can still sleep with Napalm Death and feel refreshed in the morning while many people would possibly have a seizure from the very first minute.

From a floppy disk collector and a game dreamer to a death metal sleep therapy are such a strange shift and an exciting path. And I ended up listening to thousands of bands and tens of thousands of songs over the 20 years. And many of them used in my therapy sessions many nights. I am glad they exist! I am so happy they are louder, faster, aggressive and gives me peace.