Therapy? – Troublegum & Infernal Love – 20th Anniversary Reissues


Review by Ian Savage

Release date: 31 March 2014

For anyone fortunate enough to have been into rock and metal music in the mid-90s, the number of ’20 years of…’ tours and anniversary reissues peppering the Amazon ‘new releases’ section are sobering in more ways than one. Mainly because it’s an unwelcome reminder that you’re probably now firmly eligible for ticking the ’30-40′ age box on a census form, but also due to the sheer quality of the albums now entering their second decade.

On top of commemorative outings or re-issues from the likes of Pantera, The Wildhearts, Megadeth and Soundgarden (and the tantalising prospect of Machine Head being back in the studio for their 20th birthday), Northern Irish veterans Therapy? have given us the triple-whammy of reissues of their seminal ’94 and ’95 albums Troublegum and Infernal Love in advance of a celebratory tour. These Deluxe Editions include bonus out-takes, B-sides, remixes, covers and live tracks from the LPs’ heyday – two discs accompanying the Troublegum album, and a single extra CD added to Infernal Love.

Therapy? - Troublegum
Therapy? – Troublegum

To avoid purely preaching to the converted, one should state that the original editions of these two albums are pretty much required listening for anyone who likes their rock on the unpredictable and slightly twisted side. Unless you’ve been living in the Outer Hebrides for the last twenty years you’ll have come across pop-rock hit ‘Screamager’ on rock radio and filling dancefloors in clubs across the land, but if that’s your only exposure to the Larne boys you owe it to yourself to at least have a listen to some of the more out-there and at times downright disturbing material they put out alongside the shout-along smashes (see: ‘Femtex’, ‘Diane’, ‘Me vs You’).

Therapy?’s quarter-century existence with a dozen studio releases pays ample tribute to their vitality and versatility, and while not as noisily challenging as ‘Nurse’ or ‘Semi-Detached’ (which bookended these two albums) the way in which pure pop-rock gold like ‘Loose’ and ‘Nowhere’ rubs shoulders with the uncomfortable, atonal likes of ‘Epilepsy’ and ‘Brainsaw’ makes ‘Troublegum’ and ‘Infernal Love’ the perfect way gateway to their output.

Okay, having established that anyone still reading has at least a passing familiarity with the band’s mid-90s offerings – the bonus discs. There are 52 (count ’em!) added tunes across the three CDs, so little point in an epic blow-by-blow review; suffice to say that if you look up ‘variable’ in a dictionary you may find a track listing. They range from downright inspired (‘Autosugery’, the ‘lost demo’ of ‘Evil Elvis’, the surprisingly excellent cover of Judas Priest’s ‘Breaking The Law’) through totally diverse (the cello version of ‘Lunacy Booth’), over-long (‘Isolation’s ‘Consolidated Synth Mix’, the Psycho Amigo take on ‘Trigger Inside’), experimental to the point of being practically unlistenable (‘Reuters’) to simply hard work (the ‘very 90s’ ‘Therapeutic Distortion’ dance mix of ‘Nowhere’, which owes practically nothing to the album track, the frankly pointless demo versions of ‘Turn’ and ‘Knives’). Admittedly, some of the remixes would make excellent film soundtrack material, and if the B-sides passed you by a few are more than listenable, but one is left with a palpable sense of digging through a Primark rejects bin in search of a wearable pair of jeans.

Therapy? - Infernal Love
Therapy? – Infernal Love

That’s just the Troublegum bonus CDs – thankfully, the extra material accompanying Infernal Love is more straightforward. The first half consists of occasionally ham-fisted but totally endearing and sometimes eye-opening acoustic versions of a selection of the two LPs’ tunes, followed by another handful of live offerings and B-sides; as a whole it’s a far more listenable addition, if only for the stripped-back acoustic tracks, the country-esque version of ‘Our Love Must Die’ and ‘Nice Guys’, which sounds like an out-take from sometime Therapy? tour companions Joyrider’s first LP.

Taken as a whole, these reissues do leave a slightly sour taste in the mouth despite the unquestionable quality of the originals – whilst the extra disc on Infernal Love is mostly totally worthy of inclusion, much of the ‘picked-from-the-cutting-room-floor’ padding of the Troublegum bonus discs will almost certainly be listened to once or twice and then left to gather dust or deleted from media libraries. For any previously casual fan of the band both are worth picking up, with the caveat that you shouldn’t pay too much attention to some of the remixes; for truly hardcore fans, you may well already own everything worth listening to either from your own collection or from last year’s Gemil box-set. You pays your money, as the saying goes…

Troublegum: 9/10 (6.5/10 if you already own the original)

Infernal Love: 7.5/10 (whether you own the original or not)


  1. Knives
  2. Screamager
  3. Hellbelly
  4. Stop It You’re Killing Me
  5. Nowhere
  6. Die Laughing
  7. Unbeliever
  8. Trigger Inside
  9. Lunacy Booth
  10. Isolation
  11. Turn
  12. Femtex
  13. Unrequited
  14. Brainsaw

Bonus Disc 1:

  1. Pantopon Rose
  2. Breaking The Law
  3. CC Rider
  4. Nowhere (Sabres of Paradise mix)
  5. Nowhere (Therapeutic Distortion mix)
  6. Lunacy Booth
  7. Isolation (Consolidated mix)
  8. Isolation (Consolidated Synth mix)
  9. Stop It You’re Killing Me (live)
  10. Trigger Inside (live)
  11. Evil Elvis (the lost demo)
  12. Die Laughing (David Holmes mix)
  13. Die Laughing (David Holmes mix 2)
  14. Nice ‘n’ Sleazy
  15. Reuters
  16. Tatty Seaside Town

Bonus Disc 2: 

  1. Trigger Inside (Psycho Amigo mix)
  2. Trigger Inside (Psycho Amigo instrumental mix)
  3. Knives
  4. Autosurgery
  5. Totally Random Man
  6. Accelerator
  7. Speedball
  8. Bloody Blue
  9. Neck Freak
  10. Opel Mantra
  11. Opel Mantra (live)
  12. Innocent X (live)
  13. Potato Junkie (live)
  14. Nausea (live)
  15. Totally Random Man
  16. Turn (demo)
  17. Knives (demo)
  18. Unbeliever (demo)


Infernal Love:

  1. Epilepsy
  2. Stories
  3. A Moment Of Clarity
  4. Jude The Obscene
  5. Bowels Of Love
  6. Misery
  7. Bad Mother
  8. Me vs You
  9. Loose
  10. Diane
  11. 30 Seconds

Bonus Disc:

  1. Misery (acoustic)
  2. Die Laughing (acoustic)
  3. Screamager (acoustic)
  4. Jude The Obscene (acoustic)
  5. Loose (acoustic)
  6. 30 Seconds (acoustic)
  7. Our Love Must Die
  8. Nice Guys
  9. Loose (Photek remix)
  10. Die Laughing (live)
  11. Nowhere (live)
  12. Unbeliever (live)
  13. Knives (live)
  14. Stories (live)
  15. Innocent X (Remix)
  16. Disgracelands (acoustic)
  17. Diane (acoustic)
  18. Opel Mantra (acoustic)