Review: Alt rock band PHARMACOSE’s single ‘Obey’

Single Review

Pharmacose - "Obey"

Jacksonville, Florida Alternative Rock project PHARMACOSE released their newest single, “Obey” which is the second single off of the band’s ongoing new concept project, Ascension’s Constraint, which is due for full release throughout 2022.

Rock At Night says: Looking at the single cover and the title of the song “Obey” makes me think of John Carpenter’s film They Live.  The song borders on industrial (think Nine Inch Nails) but with melodic interludes of keyboards.  The lyrics are really interesting since it criticizes the superficial nature of society and how easily led people are. Reality is an illusion. People have blind faith and trust. “Don’t speak, don’t speak against us” says the lyrics as voices or opinions are squashed. We are interested to see future songs from the concept album Ascension Constraint which tie into this social commentary.



Who is Pharmacose?

Pharmacose is a collaborative alternative rock project hailing from Jacksonville, FL, that combines steadfast analog sounds with cutting edge flair. The project– a portmanteau of “pharmaceutical” and “comatose” –began as a collaborative effort between Jones and producer and bassist Lucio Rubino. Frequent collaborators include drummer Albert Cruz and guitarist Kevin Horne, who also round out their live act. They have previously released material under the name Digital Array.

Jones, a Memphis native, formed Pharmacose in 2017 with producer Lu Rubino shortly after moving to Jacksonville to pursue new career opportunities. Rubino, a veteran producer and bassist, has worked with Paramore, Storyside B, and The Showdown, among many others. Their creative process was chiefly inspired by Jones, a medical doctor, and his past struggles with mental illness.

Drawing on such themes as reintegration to life in the wake of acute mental health episodes and the side effects of psychiatric medication, Pharmacose wields their brand of rock to let those suffering from mental illness to know that they are not alone. The result is a powerful, explosive lyrical journey into the depths of existence that would appeal to fans of Queens of the Stone Age, Porcupine Tree, Starset, Chevelle, The Mars Volta, and beyond.

By confronting anger, shame, and ultimately galvanizing hope, Pharmacose advocates for the awareness of mental health. Through vibrant soundscapes suffused with riveting synth. The group hopes to empower people to seek help, push through, and move from isolation toward connection.

Pharmacose released Prescription Fiction, Part 1, in 2020. Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, they were gearing up to play live shows in anticipation of the release of part 2. With the subsequent lockdowns canceling those shows, Jones decided to begin working on new material and used the time to explore new sounds and assume a greater role in production. The result is several new songs, which ultimately completed Prescription Fiction as an entire album, rather than a separate chapter.