Review: “I’m Not Getting Better” by Separate Entirely

When in search of an outlet for catharsis, self expression and distraction in troubled times, James Brennock, a musician known for his work in both Hardcore band Hollow Reign and Alternative Metal outfit Exit Through The Gift Shop began to write once more. Having been diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and enduring almost inevitable Mental Health struggles, the Emo and Hardcore singer songwriter began to search for some closure in becoming disabled. Working with producer James Clayton at his home studio before recording vocals at Pirate Studio in Norwich, Separate Entirely was born…

…Wonderfully atmospheric with a darkness that will resonate with anyone who has suffered from anxiety, depression or long term illness, the ache of the screamed vocals against backdrop of clean guitars during the first half of “Out of My Hands” is so bleak it could draw you to tears. Forlorn and crestfallen, Bennock embraces his nightmares and lets them spill out in brutally honest fashion, before the tidal wave of raw emotion is met with drums and bass for a final minute of power. Captivating and consuming that last minute feels like a clenched fist raised as if to scream at God before “Lungs” exposes a desire to hold on and fight despite the desperate nature of the situation. Accompanied by a delicate, intricate melody played in a clean tone on a Schecter PT, this has the spellbinding qualities of bands like The Hope Burden or Copse. The lyrical title track, “Reminder” is a stark reminder of all those lost relationships, impossible to maintain while trapped in a cycle of medication, appointments and sickness. A brave moment of acceptance and acknowledgement, this carries an incredible weight and has a real grit and integrity because this pain is being endured and you can feel every second of it here. As with its predecessor, “Grave” was recorded life at Resist Vegan Restaurant in Kings Lynn, this one confirming a new low of suicidal thoughts when there feels like there is no hope. Powerful emotive and raw, the very existence of this collection of songs represents a triumph for James Brennock and if he can create this despite all that he continues to endure then there is hope for the rest of us [8/10]

  1. Out of My Hands
  2. Lungs
  3. Reminder
  4. Grave

I’m Not Getting Better” by Separate Entirely is out 27th October 2023

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