Before writing The Drums’ latest release, Abysmal Thoughts, frontman Jonny Pierce found himself alone. On top of a messy divorce from his husband, Drums synth player and co-founding member Jacob Graham announced his departure from the group, leaving Pierce without love and without a band. But rather than sink into an abyss, Pierce had an epiphany. He realized all this time, since The Drums’ self-titled debut in 2010, that in an effort to please everyone around him, Pierce never stopped to focus on himself. This reflection is evident on Abysmal Thoughts’ opening track “Mirror”: “I look in the mirror/when the sun goes down,” Pierce sings. “I ask myself/who are you now?”

While one may think The Drums’ sound would change drastically considering the band is now essentially Pierce’s solo project, the group’s signature downbeat lyrics over upbeat surf-rock remains intact. The reason, as Pierce has explained in recent interviews, is that The Drums were his sound and vision from the beginning. “I’ve always been plagued with so much self-doubt, and I pulled people into my life to stilt me up,” he told Noisey. Now Pierce finally has the courage to accept he never needed the crutch after all, and the music is better off.

Brooklyn Bowl at The Linq, 7:30 p.m. Dec. 14, starting at $17 plus fee. 702.862.2695