Therapy? @ O2 Academy, Bristol – 14 April 2012

Further to Black Spiders opening Therapy? have outlasted competitors and outwitted industry attempts at categorisation for over 20 years.

With 13 studio albums and 28 singles released to date – the breakthrough album ‘Troublegum’ (1994) was their musical and commercial peak.

Tonight, Andy Cairns (guitar/vocals), Michael McKeegan (bass) and Neil Cooper (drums) open with ‘Teethgrinder’ before the trio power through two decades of material.

However, as Ulster’s finest continue to release albums; gaining enough attention to tour and entertain a loyal following, it has to be said that nothing comes close to ‘Die Laughing’, the Joy Division cover ‘Isolation’, ‘Nowhere’ and ‘Screamager’, all from the classic ‘Troublegum’.

For me, Therapy? are the act of the night, and not just because I go back with them, but because they rock out with the kind of carefree simplicity that all too few bands have these days.

Review & Photography: Steve Johnston

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