The Scramble

In Uncategorized on February 19, 2009 at 5:11 am

A brief look at new media.


The return of New Brunswick’s own post-hardcore heroes, Thursday, is a much-needed one.  With the genre falling to stale emo-rockers seemingly by the day the return of the kings came at the perfect time.  On their last release 2006’s A City by the Light Divided, Thursday seemed to be faltering under the weight of their own music.  Strings, keys, synths, and singer Geoff Rickly’s lamest lyrics to date had fans wondering if there was anything left in the tank.   On Common Existaence a refocused Thursday gives the same formula another shot adding in some of their old fury, better synths and most of all, a much better written album by Rickly.  The result is eleven tracks that blend the bands breakthrough classic Full Collpase with A City. Polished raw hardcore mixed with prog pop patches.  Rickly and Co. bring a huge wall of sound style to tracks like “As He Climbed the Dark Mountain” and “Love has Led Us Astray” but without budging from the pummeling style of other songs like “You Were the Cancer”.


I remember hearing about this band a few years ago.  Punk rock, art punk, something rock, Trail of Dead (it’s much easier to type) were the underground golden boys of the early part of the millennium and they weren’t afraid to show off their duel drumming, heavy guitared brand to anyone.  After being picked up by a major label, it seemed like the well went dry for Trail of Dead.  Their albums became dense art rock, soundscapes with layers and layers of instruments and ideas but without the soul of their earlier pieces.  On their latest release, Century of Self, the band went old school, recording all of the songs live and heading back toward their original style.  Century of Self isn’t the band’s crown jewel, but it does make Trail of Dead relevant again.  “Fields of Coral” sounds like a Bruce Springsteen song, “Far Pavilions” is mellow despite sprawling guitars, and “Inland Sea” has a seriously epic intro.  Welcome back Trail of Dead, welcome back.


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