Review Summary: Thrice create something emotional and ultimately melodic, possibly one of the best albums from this decade.
To be perfectly honest, a lot of modern bands lack the essence that a lot of bands before them have had. Maybe it’s something to do with that the times are moving and everything is becoming more advanced. Records now sound way sharper and more powerful and that tends to divide people up. Some people enjoy the new full-on force that modern records give off while people like the atmosphere that older records hold. I’m completely neutral on this subject of course. While I enjoy the feel of old records, I also enjoy that crisp sound a lot of new releases have.
Thrice are the latter, everything here has a beautiful smooth sound and that’s what really brings the album out. Without this loud production, the hooks wouldn’t be used to their full potential. Hooks, this seems to be the word a lot of underground bands are scared of. It definitely doesn’t hurt to have some instantly grabbing catch to the song and Thrice realize that. The album is stuffed with them, from beginning to end every song has enough punch to blow your lights out. A lot of the songs don’t follow a simple structure at all and seem a bit short with half of the album being under three minutes. In all honesty it just makes this easier to listen to as any longer and the songs would get stale. The record is extremely unique and if they don’t seem unique then it’s usually other bands trying to rip off their style. Every second of every song is something special, there is not a dull moment on the album. It seems the band have had the album planned in their heads, went in to record it and came out exactly the way it played in their head.
The LP is mostly guitar-driven, it has some of the most addictive guitar riffs and lead lines I have ever heard and that’s saying quite a lot. The melody is there as is the heaviness that makes the album seem more powerful. There are solos but usually aren’t just put there for the sake of it, there is always a place for it when Thrice decide to rip the fretboard up. The bass is pretty audible and while not spontaneously standing out a lot, does the job perfectly. Remember that this is mostly guitar driven so the bass isn’t the main concern. The drums are forceful and every roll put into the songs usually lead onto better things. If the snare were produced a bit better then the album could seem more powerful. Dustin’s vocals are perfect, they hit every note the way I want to hear it and he never manages to hit a bum note. Never. The lyrics do tend to be cheesy at times but lyrics aren’t what are important here and they do get the job done at the end of the day so I can’t complain.
The quality never drops at all and every track has something that’s very enjoyable. From the start “Kill Me Quickly” to the punk ending “The Beltsville Crucible”, there isn’t a dull moment. “Kill Me Quickly” will be the one to attack you first with it’s ravaging screaming verses to the instantly gripping hook not even half way through. “A Subtle Dagger” keeps this formula in mind as well as do a few other tracks on the album. “Deadbolt” is supposedly the single from the album (well, I know there was a video made for it) and this is pretty much the
song. Every second seems to add something new and it’s a surprise when the piano segment pops up near the end. “In Years To Come” is near the edge of falling out the ‘catchy’ seat but it seems the best part of the song doesn’t come till near the end where it seems Dustin is pouring his heart out right in front of you. “The Red Death” doesn’t really take me in until about a minute in but after that minute, wow.
This is one of the best records in a long while. Thrice manage to convey emotion, melody, power, heaviness and everything else in between on an album that doesn’t even reach forty minutes. Sadly this isn’t much of a five, there isn’t really anything that is legendary on here but for what it is, it’s amazing. Everything is perfect besides a sometimes weak snare and lame production and even that isn’t a problem so I’m going to do the next best thing and give it the second highest rating I can. This is powerful, this is emotional and ultimately melodic, this is Thrice.