Following up an album as big as “Troublegum” was always going to be a big task for Therapy? So it came as a big surprise when, just over twelve months later they appeared with “Infernal Love”, an album which showed a completely different side to the band. This, their fourth album has also been given the deluxe edition treatment along with its predecessor.
With such an acclaimed album behind them, it would have been easy to replicate that formula or do something that would be more commercial, but luckily Therapy? did neither of these and instead went off on a complete tangent that had previously only been hinted at by the likes of ‘Die Laughing’ and the Joy Division cover ‘Isolation’. The songs are linked together by David Holmes ambient soundscapes, and once again, the re-master stays pretty true to the original sound, the Al Clay production was one of the highlights first time round for me, personally.
Opener ‘Epilepsy’ is the closest you get to the sound of the previous album, but after that the band show a darker, brooding side, which is prevalent throughout the album. The album is a lot more melodic than its predecessor, but also manages to be darker, sombre and more menacing at the same time. Five of the tracks last over five minutes, and as a whole, it marks a big turning point in the history of the band. As well as the change in musical direction, this was the last release to feature the original line up, as drummer Fyfe Ewing left the band after the European tour of the album.
The cover of Husker Du’s ‘Diane’ is one of the bands finest moments, with the minimal approach of just Martin McCarrick’s cello and Andy Cairn’s vocals giving this true-life murder story an even more haunting feel. A mood that perfectly fits the sinister overtones that pervade throughout. The fact this this comes straight after one of the albums poppier moments just adds to the uneasy feeling this album exudes.
The second CD (as with the “Troublegum” re-issue) features the b – sides from the releases from this album, namely ‘Diane’, ‘Loose’ and ‘Bad Mother’ singles as well as a US promo release and the remix of ‘Innocent X’ from a split single with Orbital. 9 of the 18 tracks on the bonus CD are acoustic, the first six being very stripped back, very basic and almost fragile versions of four album tracks and also ‘Screamager’ and ‘Die Laughing’
Only a two disc set this time round, but this is still a through collection of the bands history after “Troublegum” and shows the first hints of where the band was heading in the future. Their must recent album “A Brief Crack Of Light” owes a lot to the sound and style of this record. A lot of fans will already own the extras given, as this has no previously unreleased material to offer, but it is a great album and one that again shows off one of the best British bands of their time.