Album Reviews

Therapy? Cleave Punk Rock Theory
Wednesday, September 26, 2018 - 16:45
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- by Tom Dumarey

30 Years into the game and still not showing any signs of slowing down.

You have to hand it to Therapy?, they have stamina. And listening to ‘Cleave,’ you quickly work out that it’s not nearly the only thing they still have going for them.

Album number fifteen from these legends kicks off with ‘Wreck It Like Beckett,’ one of those trademark Therapy? songs that manages to sound both claustrophobic and catchy. It’s a formula that has worked well for them since their early days and one they are happy to play out some more in cuts like ‘Kakistocracy’ and ‘I Stand Alone’. And then there’s ‘Callow’ and ‘Crutch,’ two of the album’s most melodic cuts. Instant classics with very strong choruses that I am already looking forward to hearing live.

To be honest, they really do play to their strengths on ‘Cleave’. And can you blame them? While Therapy? has never shied away from the occasional experiment, they are best known for having a very distinctive sound. Well… that and that Hüsker Dü cover of ‘Diane’. But those take-no-prisoners drums, killer riffs and Andy Cairns’ instantly recognizable vocals… it’s all there, spread out over ten equally strong songs that are all deliciously vitriolic.

Therapy? has been consistently strong throughout their entire career, but every now and then there is an album that truly stands out. 2015’s ‘Disquiet’ was one of those. And with ‘Cleave,’ they have managed to make two in a row.


Track listing:

  1. Wreck It Like Beckett
  2. Kakistocracy
  3. Callow
  4. Expelled
  5. Success? Success is Survival
  6. Save Me from the Ordinary
  7. Crutch
  8. I Stand Alone
  9. Dumbdown
  10. No Sunshine
Tom Dumarey
Tom Dumarey

Lacking the talent to actually play in a band, Tom decided he would write about bands instead. Turns out his writing skills are mediocre at best as well.