THERAPY?

"High Anxiety" (Spitfire; 2003)

Reviewed by R. Scott Bolton

What makes Therapy? great is the band's ability to combine several strong genres of music - hard rock, heavy metal, punk rock, hard alternative - and create a sound that never sounds too much like one of its ingredients. In other words, just when you think you've got Therapy?'s sound figured out, along comes the next track and re-sets your thinking. 

And we're not just talking music here. Lyrically, the band does the same thing, jumping from frivolous rock'n'roll anthems to serious political commentaries. Just sample a little of track #1, "Hey Satan - You Rock" and then skip over to track #7, "Not In Any Name" and you'll see what we mean. 

Therapy? excels in the songwriting department and "High Anxiety" features some of their best work yet. Every track is solid; there's no filler here. And, again, the band's expertise at making each song just a little different keeps the listener guessing from track-to-track. What'll be next?

Overall, "High Anxiety" is probably closer to punk than it is to metal but, again, that can change from song to song. What counts is that the guitars are crisp and loud, the vocals clear and strong, the drums taut and the rhythms consistently engaging. It's great stuff and an amazing return of a band that's been out of the limelight for too damn long.

This enhanced CD also contains the video for "If It Kills Me."

Therapy?: Martin McCarrick - guitar, cello; Neil Cooper - drums; Andrew J. Cairns - vocals, guitar; Michael McKeegan - bass.

For more information you can go to www.therapyquestionmark.co.uk.

"So Much For The Ten Year Plan: A Retrospective 1990 - 2000" (Ark 21; 1999)

Reviewed by Keith Guillotine

This collection of some of the best Therapy tracks of 1990 - 2000 was great! I especially loved the opening track "Screamager." It  started the album out hard and the music just kept going from there. But I did think that tracks 10 ("Six Mile Water") and 13 ("Diane") were a bit lame.

The jacket has an excellent description of this CD, a description that says exactly what I think about this band: "The ingenious Therapy? - always loud, unapologetic, snarling, offbeat, cranked up, raw and majestic - this is rock at it's best. After ten intense and brilliant years, Therapy? prove that a decade of music, is only the beginning of their bizarre, twisted, demented journey. Every dark lyric, every discordant guitar chord has meaning and in their historical perspective they endure with their  melding of rock, metal, punk and hilarious twisted themes providing a serious throttling of the senses."

After listening to this CD several times I have to definitely agree with that  statement!

Therapy? is: Andrew Cairns - vocals, guitar; Michael McKeegan - bass, vocals; Martin McCarrick - guitar, cello, vocals; Graham Hopkins - drums, vocals (tracks 2, 5, 7, 10, 11, 12, 16); Fyfe Ewing - drums, vocals (tracks 1, 3, 4, 6, 8, 9, 14, 15). No listing for drums on track 13 (and, being a drummer, that's probably why I didn't like it).

For more information you can go to www.therapyquestionmark.co.uk or visit  their record label at http://www.ark21.com

Rating Guide:

A classic. This record will kick your ass.

Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

So-so. You've heard better.

Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.

 

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Copyright 2003 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.
Revised: 16 Oct 2016 18:05:08 -0400 .