Sharon Van Etten covered Nine Inch Nails’ “Hurt” for Suicide Prevention Month as part of Sounds of Savings’ Song That Found Me at the Right Time series, a partnership with the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.
The clip opens with Van Etten sharing her own struggles with emotions and reaching out to others for help. “In my life, when I’ve accepted help are the times when I have overcome [my problems],” she admitted. “I found the road, ya know? It was like somebody opened the gate to a road that I knew was a better road.”
“Even if it’s a different road, at least it’s moving,” she continued. “And you’re moving forward to something else then this dark place alone. Wouldn’t you rather go down a road with someone you care about that wants to help you? Sometimes it does take an outside perspective for you to understand yourself better.”
Van Etten first heard the Downward Spiral track with her older brother as they were listening to a box of cassette tapes. “It was my first sign that my brother was trying to connect with me on a more emotional level than just, ‘We’re sharing music,'” she noted. She then tore through the cover, singing the emotional lines while shredding the guitar: “What have I become/My sweetest friend?/Everyone I know/Goes away in the end.”
Earlier this year, Van Etten pledged her support for a new initiative from the Hi, How Are You Project, the mental-health nonprofit inspired by Daniel Johnston. She also recently covered Lucinda Williams’ “If My Love Could Kill,” issued on the Alzheimer’s Association’s compilation LP, Music Moments.