Greg Puciato, formerly of The Dillinger Escape Plan and currently of The Black Queen, will release his book of photography and poetry titled Separate The Dawn on February 12. The book is limited to 1,000 hardcover copies via Federal Prisoner and consists of photos from The Dillinger Escape Plan’s final tour, as well as poems and free writings Puciato has accomplished over the years.
Separate The Dawn is specifically planned to arrive on the two-year anniversary of The Dillinger Escape Plan’s bus crash in Poland. Puciato elaborated on the book’s writings to Revolver, saying a lot of it comes from a place of anxiety over the band’s end, the bus crash and addiction to various drugs and medications.
“The end of Dillinger was this black hole that I didn’t know what was going to be on the other side of, and that causes a lot of anxiety. Especially as a singer, a lot of your identity is as the mascot of this band. That fuses to your identity. So when you’re marching to the unknown and know “this is going to dissolve,” you start to realize how much of yourself has fused with that and become the sort of bundle over the last 17 years.
Then you’re like, “Well, what happened to the person before this is what happened and do I have enough of another person outside of this to withstand losing this massive identity?” The singer gets it the worst because they’re the face of the band.
I think that it was a combination of a lot of other things that were happening behind the scenes that were causing me to kind of reevaluate my whole idea of what I thought caused my trajectory in life. Just a lot of shit was happening that was pinpointing me having a lot of anxiety and pretty much endless panic attacks.
The bus accident came at the height of that. When I was already at my worst, like, I was already in really bad shape on that particular tour and I was not in a good place … The bus accident came when I was in the peak of not being in a good place, and it just wrecked me beyond what normally would wreck someone if they were asleep and got hit by a fucking tractor trailer. [Laughs] Which is bad enough.
When you’re having panic attacks a lot, it’s coming out of nowhere and part of what you’re doing is trying to figure out where it’s all coming from, but it’s still hitting you from out of nowhere. You’re in this feeling at all times that you’re not safe. You’re getting blindsided by this energy torpedo.
The bus accident was kind of a physical torpedo that happened while I was already feeling that way, and it just made my whole life feel surreal in a way that I was not used to. And not surreal in a good way, like, “I can’t believe this is happening — the band is kicking ass and this is crazy!” or “I can’t believe we’re on tour with this band!” Those surrealities are positive, but this was like when you’re in a dream with this person you love and that person fucking turns into a monster and blows apart, then all of the sudden it’s horrifying? That’s where I felt at all times.
After that, there were a lot of things that just got worse. I came home and ended up getting on all these anti-anxiety medications and became addicted to them, then I withdrew from them, and it was just getting worse and worse and worse. A lot of when I read this [book], a lot is just like, “Fuck, man.” What a weird place I was in, and like I said, I don’t feel like that at all now.
The title even, before I knew what it was going to mean, now it means something different to me. If you can separate the dawn, literally, and draw a line in the sand between dark and light, or the beginning of a positive time period from the dark night of the soul.
[The title] just came out of me. Now I’m like, “Oh wow, that works out sometimes,” you know, like with ‘Dissociation‘, it was the same way. It didn’t start as Dillinger breaking up, but then we made it and suddenly Dillinger‘s breaking up, so suddenly the title makes a lot more sense. It’s really serendipitous things that I guess kind of make me feel like I’m tapped into what I need to be tapped into.”