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Blood Tangent | Sarai Nissan

Photo Credit: Bobby Jones

It is midnight on Dec. 31, 2010, I’m 14 and you are whatever age you were seven to eight years ago. I am practically infused with the sweaty teens and post-grads around me, all desperately reaching over the two-foot barricade, hoping their arms might grow longer in an attempt to graze their fingertips across the pallid skin of Alice Glass.

“5, 4, 3, 2, 1…” The crowd droned. The clock struck 12 and it was a new year. Champagne was being poured into eager mouths that bubbled over chapped lips. I spotted Ethan Kath in a corner and Alice huddled like a frightened child. I didn’t have a New Year’s kiss. In fact, I had a bitter taste in my mouth.

It is now 2011 and I am ushering in the New Year witnessing Alice Glass hobble onto the stage, her figure just visible in between flashes of the strobe light, on crutches because she had just broken her ankle. As she angelically screeched into the microphone, she aggressively casted her crutch aside. There was a half empty bottle of whiskey always at her side.

This past week, Alice Glass released a statement on why she left Crystal Castles. When she left, it was a shock. She was brilliant, the band was doing well and the air of mystery they conjured was only doing them favors. Glass revealed that she left the duo to escape the insidious hands of Ethan Kath (real name Claudio Palmieri) because of emotional, psychological, physical, and sexual abuse.

“Hey, hey, everyone be cool, if you keep trying to touch them they aren’t going to play anymore,” one of the bouncers said when Glass had to rip herself away from a fan—we’re back in 2011. Crystal Castles was notorious for stopping shows midway if something happened that—we now know—Ethan didn’t like, and Alice would  always follow, fragilely hollow and phantom-like.

Kath and Glass once again retreated into a corner as Glass nursed her bottle of whiskey. She seemed mysterious but subdued, as if she were only a ghost. But when she sang and performed, those were the times you could see her for more than what Kath restricted her to.  

It was dark when I left and I felt grimy, ultimately fitting in with the evening’s events and, in a strange way, even acted like it was some sort of foreshadow or hidden message. But people are just so very good at pretending.

The world was supposed to end the next year.

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