Thrice
Major/Minor


4.5
superb

Review

by SowingSeason STAFF
September 21st, 2011 | 90 replies


Release Date: 2011 | Tracklist


Over time, Thrice have evolved into one of the most prominent rock bands of the past couple decades. Their roots travel both wide and deep, starting at post-hardcore with The Illusion of Safety, digging into alt-rock with Vheissu, and eventually settling into a sweet spot with the atmospheric, experimental qualities of The Alchemy Index. It wasn’t until 2009 that we saw Thrice begin to tie all of the loose ends together. Beggars was at times the embodiment of the Water EP, and in other instances it harkened back to the raw, honest sound of The Artist In The Ambulance. While Beggars seemed to function as a resume of the band’s work to date, it lacked the darker edge that has always made Thrice such a balanced listen, from the instruments all the way down to the vocals and lyrics. That is where Major/Minor steps in to complete Thrice’s evolution. A passionate commentary on the evils of humankind, Major/Minor illustrates how apathy and deceit have infiltrated our social order and left behind a wasteland of abandoned hope and idealism.

In a way, it is a completely natural progression from Beggars. Whereas that record delved into our problematic society from the perspective of a hopeful, “True progress means matching the world to the vision in our heads…we always change the vision instead”, Major/Minor is more of a desperate plea. It is hard to imagine Thrice giving up on their search for truth, which dates all the way back to ‘Stare At the Sun’, but lines like “We are cowards and thieves, will we never turn to grieve the damage done?” and “Never see, never quake with rage at what we have become” suggest that they are on the brink. The songs on this album support that notion, constantly shifting their focus between the luster of a silver lining, “Then like one receiving sight, I beheld a brilliant light in the dark” and a cathartic feeling of fury directed at a world that has failed quite obviously, “Our hearts are - they’re so deceitful, sick and filled with lies that lead to death.” Major/Minor is endowed with Kensrue’s brilliant writing, and once again the album as a whole benefits while the lyrics turn out to be an absolute triumph. Thrice chooses to gear their songs' meanings towards social and political commentary, and just as they did on Beggars, each track makes for a listen that challenges our worldly perceptions and stimulates the intellectual mind.

Of course, Thrice supports their bold lyrical passages with completely solid musicianship. Major/Minor carries darker undertones, which are brought to the surface by a heavier overall style. Moments that would have been filled with soft croons and acoustic passages on recent works are now characterized by coarse vocals, controlled/melodic screams, and sludgy, temperamental electric guitar riffs. The album never makes a full return to the intensity of Thrice’s youthful days, and there is nary a ‘Deadbolt’ present here, but Major/Minor treads on at a consistent level that never sacrifices its fire at the wrong time. Perhaps it is yet another byproduct of Thrice’s ever-growing wisdom, but this is a record that knows when to amp up its sound, when to slow it down, when to balance tempos, and when to fill a void with plain silence. The band’s ability to prove their vitality without sacrificing a single aspect of maturity is nothing short of admirable, and it is just another reason why Major/Minor is able to grow and progress within itself for almost a full hour.

Major/Minor might best be described by American author Marilyn Ferguson’s famous quote, “Your past is not your potential…In any hour you can choose to liberate the future.” For decades now, Thrice have continued to climb to unprecedented heights. It seems like every album is a new pinnacle full of experimentation and artistic worth, waiting to be discovered and interpreted by listeners. Vheissu may still be the measuring stick, but that doesn’t mean that each subsequent release doesn’t have something equally important to say. Major/Minor is no different in that sense, cementing Thrice as the model of consistency in alternative rock. But even in its remarkable steadiness, the band’s discography continues to surprise us with every addition it makes. It’s the same old Thrice that continues to give us something truly new which, in today’s era, is a gift that will never die.



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user ratings (1214)
Chart.
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Comments:Add a Comment 
SowingSeason
Staff Reviewer
September 21st 2011


16008 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Couldn't think of a fitting summary, but all you need to know is that this is Thrice and that means that this is amazing.

Digging: Yellowcard - Lift a Sail

Trebor.
Contributing Reviewer
September 21st 2011


50380 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Says you

Digging: Viper the Rapper - You'll Cowards Don't Even Smoke Crack

SowingSeason
Staff Reviewer
September 21st 2011


16008 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Definitely grew on me, easily one of 2011's best

Trebor.
Contributing Reviewer
September 21st 2011


50380 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I've only heard it once

Ignimbrite
September 21st 2011


5343 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Prime review, pos'd so hard. I love how it comments on the lyrics as much as (or even more than) the music.

Also, stupid little nitpicky thing that you may ignore, but in "Thrice chooses to gear their song’s " I believe that the apostrophe should be (songs').

Digging: This Will Destroy You - Another Language

Rev
September 21st 2011


9423 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

this pleases me greatly


love you sowing

SowingSeason
Staff Reviewer
September 21st 2011


16008 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I'm pretty happy with this review tbh, which usually doesn't happen

I think I just got tired of writing pop/mainstream reviews, and this busted me out of my repetitive writing slump

wabbit
September 21st 2011


7000 Comments


" one of the most prominent rock bands of the past couple decades. " we define rock band differently.

Ignimbrite
September 21st 2011


5343 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Rabbit, did you neg this?

SowingSeason
Staff Reviewer
September 21st 2011


16008 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

well they are a mix of things, rock included, so I don't know what you want me to say

wabbit
September 21st 2011


7000 Comments


basically I want you to agree with me that thrice sucks and that opinions that differ from mine scare me.

SowingSeason
Staff Reviewer
September 21st 2011


16008 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

a little neg never hurt anyone

but if you actually meant what you said, then that's a scarier indication of what our society has come to than any lyrical passage that Thrice could muster

Trebor.
Contributing Reviewer
September 21st 2011


50380 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

The vocals bother me

SowingSeason
Staff Reviewer
September 21st 2011


16008 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Also, thanks for the edit Toby. We should hook up sometime, I won't tell Jim.

toxin.
September 21st 2011


12427 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

SS4Staff
Good review man. Pos'd

tiesthatbind
September 21st 2011


7374 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

*ahem*

Digging: xSPONGEXCOREx - How Tough Are Yah?

wabbit
September 21st 2011


7000 Comments


posed cause negs are dumb

tiesthatbind
September 21st 2011


7374 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Awesome review dude. I'm thinking of bumping this to a 4.5, easily second best Thrice for me now.

SowingSeason
Staff Reviewer
September 21st 2011


16008 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

oh...hey Jim. I didn't mean it baby.

And thanks xtoxin, rabbit, ties!

Trebor.
Contributing Reviewer
September 21st 2011


50380 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Where's the guy with the Stanley avatar?



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