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Suicide Pact - You First

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Album Review

Very unapologetically, Suicide Pact says "Screw you if you don't like me." Shedding any sense of pop hooks, Andy Cairns and company resort to meat cleavers to reel you in. It's a big sloppy mess, which will likely appeal to fans of Therapy?'s older material — here's hoping they didn't lose them in the tar pit of Infernal Love. Those wanting a return to the tunefulness of "Screamager" and "Loose" will likely be disappointed. It's a warts-and-all record, which means it isn't short of its ugly bits ("Jam Jar Jail," "Six Mile Water"). Cairns' occasional Billy Gibbons-meets-Tom Waits warbling can get tiresome, especially when you're reminded of his fine singing voice. But when they really get their Irish blood pumping, the magic of Troublegum's nastier bits ("Knives," "Trigger Inside") rears its demented head and Therapy? click on all cylinders. Suicide Pact's greatest moment is the last track listed, "Sister"; it's the most rhythmic, bass-driven song on the record. Cairns' guitar allows room for the rhythm section to breathe a little, a rarity. If there's a running lyrical thread to Therapy?'s metallic miserablism throughout their decade-long existence, it's stated in that song: "Sister I'm lost/ And I'm taking you with me/ Wherever I go." Despite growing long in the tooth for a hard-rock band, they're still doing this music better than the majority of their younger ilk.


Formed: 1989 in Belfast, Northern Ireland

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Northern Ireland’s Therapy? might have been amongst the vast number of bands who benefited from the rise of Nirvana and grunge in the early '90s, but they proved their worth by outlasting that trend and any number of sub-strains that followed throughout the subsequent two decades. They might have frustrated the unit shifters who banked on them to follow the pack and hit the charts, but they never felt the need to cash in. By constantly expanding upon a frame of influential references that included...
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Suicide Pact - You First, Therapy?
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