Thursday: Common Existence CD review (Shockhound)

It’s been almost three years since Thursday released their last studio album. In the meantime, they’ve been dropped from a major label, had a questionable collection of rarities released by their first label and managed to get four new songs out via a split EP with Japanese screamo band Envy. With COMMON EXISTENCE, it’s pretty clear the band intends to make up for lost time, as the album screams out of the gate with the vaguely allegorical “Resuscitation of a Dead Man,” a full-blown rocker that finds all of the elements of Thursday’s propulsive post-hardcore sound in place. From there, the album wends its way into territory the group explored on its last disc, A CITY BY THE LIGHT DIVIDED (which, like COMMON EXISTENCE, owes its atmospheric production style to Dave Fridmann). Tracks like “Friends in the Armed Forces” and “Subway Funeral” are absolute dynamos, bristling with stop-start, tempo-changing energy, while the sonically vibrant “Last Call” melds a Cave In-style soup of guitar swamp onto an energetic framework. Some cuts like the utterly uninteresting, midtempo “As He Climbed the Mountain” (which ruthlessly references At The Drive-In) and the inevitable “mellow tracks punctuated by explosions of bombast” like “Circuits of Fever” and “Beyond the Visible Spectrum” are less stellar, but overall, the warm brutality of COMMON EXISTENCE makes up for any such shortcomings.

First appeared Feb. 17, 2009 at


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