Cyhra guitarist Jesper Strömblad (ex-In Flames) has been missing the band’s recent touring and vocalist Jake E (ex-Amaranthe) has now explained why. As it turns out, Strömblad has been battling mental health issues such as social stress and depression.
Jake told Metal Covenant the following when asked if he worries about the possibility of Strömblad leaving the group:
“Not [in] the least. I won’t talk shit about other bands whatsoever, because I don’t know about their background story. But the way I see it is that Jesper hasn’t gotten enough support for his problems. In our band, he has 2000 percent support, and he has done everything he can.”
“He toured with us for a year and he really felt like shit, because he suffers from social stress, for instance. He suffers from depression. He has problems with open spaces and crowded places. He has a hard time with traveling and not feeling that it’s home. He has made one hell of a journey and has become free from all those drugs and alcohol and stuff. I don’t think anyone can comprehend how bad he feels and how bad he’s been feeling. Obviously, it’s been up and down. But I would never put pressure on another person, like, ‘You’re gonna do this now, okay!’ What we have said that this is our band and he does his part. He writes songs, he’s playing with us, he’s doing videos — I mean, to the extent that he is able to do so. But to put pressure on someone will only knock it over in the end, I think. And I think a big reason for him leaving bands is that he has put too much pressure on himself, started drinking again, made the band angry since he has screwed things up because he has tried to suppress his anxiety with alcohol or other substances, which makes gigs go straight to hell. Now he’s in a program where he’s fighting to get rid of these problems.”
He also added:
“He has our full support. I’m not worried at all. If that day comes, he will come to me instead of reaching to a point in a band where somebody makes a fool of himself so that you look stupid. This band means everything to Jesper as well. He loves this band. If Jesper would say that he won’t play with us anymore, he would say, ‘Well, I’ll step aside,’ under controlled circumstances, if you know what I mean. Which, of course, I hope will never happen.”