Bring Me The Horizon’s Oli Sykes on drug addiction: ‘Ketamine made me want to die’

Singer describes ketamine as a 'scummy drug' that 'took my ego away'

Bring Me The Horizon frontman Oli Sykes has opened up about his past struggles with substance abuse, claiming that drug addiction made him want to kill himself.

The band’s new album ‘That’s The Spirit’ will be released this Friday (September 11), following 2013’s ‘Sempiternal’, which has sold over half a million copies worldwide to date.

Speaking to Alternative Press, Sykes revealed that ‘Sempiternal’ was written after he recovered from a ketamine addiction.

“My issues stemmed from the fact that I was trying so hard to fight against what people were saying about me,” Sykes said. “I wasn’t what people were saying I was. But at the same time, I wasn’t a good person, either. I felt so guilty about who I was.”

Describing ketamine as a “scummy drug” that “disengages users from reality, causing hallucinations and distorted perception,” the singer added, “It’s not cocaine. It’s cheap, easy and fast… It took my ego away. It took away who I was.”

Sykes explained how his addiction caused him to contemplate suicide, adding, “I nearly killed myself. I just didn’t care whether I lived or not. I was very close [to suicide]. I wanted to die.”

The singer eventually attended rehab sessions, but stated that he disagrees with many of the things that drug rehabilitation teach. “They helped me in there, but I didn’t believe half the stuff they told me,” Sykes is quoted as saying.

“They tell you ‘it’s a disease’ – that’s bollocks. It’s not a disease; it’s a self-inflicted problem. It’s offensive to people with diseases to claim addiction is a disease. They said it would be a struggle every day, that you’re an addict for the rest of your life. Bollocks. It’s all bollocks. I’ve never looked back since I got clean. I got clean for my family, my friends and my band. I didn’t get clean for God.”

NMEDanny North/NME

Bring Me The Horizon will play a free intimate show in London this Friday (September 11), on the day of the release of their new album.

The show will take place at House Of Vans in Waterloo, SE1, with the show accompanied by an exclusive screening of the band’s ‘Live At Wembley’ DVD. It’ll be BMTH’s second small show of the week, after they played Kingston’s Rose Theatre last night, and follows on from their Reading & Leeds Festivals appearances.

The band were in a confident mood speaking to NME recently, with Sykes saying: “Touring every step of the way has made us appreciate all of this way more. Do we want to headline here someday? It would be amazing. We feel like we could do it justice. If we got offered that slot we’d make sure it was one to remember.”