One of the very few non-horrifying things happening in society right now is a newfound openness in discussing mental health and the struggles we all deal with in some. Sure there’s still have a very long way to go in de-stigmatizing things like therapy, seeking help, and about a trillion other issues, but the vast amount of progress that has been made in this arena the past decade or so has been enormous.

Which brings us to the Los Angeles-based rock quartet Badflower and their newest single “x ANA x”. Frontman Josh Katz is quite upfront when discussing his own mental health issues, and has admitted that songwriting is like a version of therapy for him. Having learned this, I see now that the song’s title is a play on the popular sedative and not about about an ex named Ana.

“x ANA x is about my struggles with anxiety and panic disorder as a performer,” Katz said in a statement. “It’s the scariest and most debilitating thing in my life so I made a joke out of it. You should try it.”

I’m all for making light of serious things (since nothing is all that serious anyhow) so I wholeheartedly endorse Katz approach here. Few things are as therapeutic as laughter, indeed sometimes joking is the only way to cope.

And if that joke turns out to be a note-perfect rock song packed with enough intensity that at time it feels like it will crawl out of the speakers and rip your throat out, even better.



“x ANA x” is the second offering we’ve heard from Badflower’s forthcoming debut LP Ok, I’m Sick, which is due out next February. “Ghost” is more an anthemic slow-burn, but it’s great in its own right. 

You can pre-order Ok, I’m Sick, in a multitude of formats here. As the hype and anticipation for their debut continues to grow, Badflower have a few tour dates left before the year ends. We’ve got the venues listed below. For tickets hit up the usual suspects.

Nov 23 Rec Room Buffalo, NY, USA
Nov 24 Skully’s Columbus, OH, USA
Nov 26 The Sinclair Cambridge, MA, USA
Nov 27 The Foundry Philadelphia, PA, USA
Nov 29 Gramercy Theatre New York, NY, USA
Nov 30 Baltimore Soundstage Baltimore, MD, USA
Dec 1 Asbury Lanes Asbury Park, NJ, USA
Dec 3 The High Watt Nashville, TN, USA
Dec 4 Purgatory Atlanta, GA, USA
Dec 8 The Forum Inglewood, CA, USA


Calvin Paradise is not any one thing. The half-hearted vagabond and forgetful luddite currently resides in Los Angeles and how he spends his time is none of your damned business.