The Irish ones return, apparently after the mishap that was Infernal Love. Except I didn't think it was. Sure, it wasn't Babyteeth, but in it's own right it was an album with a bunch of good songs, some great ones. And I kinda find it ironic that on listening to much of this album, quite a few of the vocals from Mr C. remind me most of the vocals off of Infernal Love. As if it couldn't have been that bad, but every band always needs to whinge about their last album. It's rule 7a of the recording contract. Honest, go and look it up.
So as such, many hope this is a return to form for Therapy? Others still, (probably myself included) wonder, just wonder if this will see the return of the Babyteeth style.
After the first couple of listens the thoughts in my head were, it's the same. It's different. It's heavier. It's poppier. It's not as good. It's better. Maybe that's what you experience with every album. Not Troublegum, that was just 'wow' all the way through on first listen. Great album. Funny how I don't listen to it as much these days as Infernal or Babyteeth. Both of which impacted similar thoughts on initial listen as the ones I've listed above. Ok, maybe not Babyteeth, as it was the first EP, but I went through the 'it's great, it's not great' element.
Church of Noise is apparently a little too disposable. Yeah, I'd probably agree with that when it was the single, as the album opener, it makes more sense.
Born too Soon sees a vocal from Andy that reminds me of A Moment of Clarity, from Infernal Love. Indeed, the entire song sounds like the natural successor to me. But Clarity was always a fave on that album anyway.
Stay Happy sounds like the Pixies. It's a silly song like Church is to listen to, and is great. Don't Expect Roses features a vocal that reminds me of the late great Joyrider (who of course were initially on Andy's Blunt record label) though Mr Bassist doesn't seem to think so (as you'll discover in the interview) .
Some of the highlights though are saved til last with the final tracks. It sees the band stretching away again from the 3 minute nuggets that have filled the last few albums. Hopefully it may be indicative of the future. The combination of great pop songs, and these more 'experimental' sounds is one which sounds great to me.
So, does it live up to hopes, expectations, requirements. Nope, cos no album ever does. Because that's trying to fit your ideas and concepts, and of course, music is the ideas and concepts of those that create it. So when it comes along, you have to forget what you wanted and listen to what has been given. It's about forgetting your mindset, and seeing if you can accept the bands mindset. And the really great albums are the ones that DO fit. They mould and become a part of your life. They have a meaning that's right for you, and may be totally different for someone else. And if you like it, great, if not, then there's so many others out there anyway. But I like it, and so I'm happy. Therapy? are back and that's good, because I remember the lift I've felt after seeing them at gigs in the past. So much so that fucking up an exam the next day doesn't seem to matter so much.
And you know what, throughout it all, I didn't once think, Fyffe's missing. If you sit and listen, then sure, the drumming is different, but Graham fitted in well. Or maybe Fyffe just wasn't as irreplaceable as some people initially thought.