Monday, January 25, 2010

Thursday on a Saturday

Freelance journalism isn't exactly the most glamorous work. Most articles and reviews that you read on webzines and blogs are written by people purely out of the passion of doing so. Sometimes there are small perks like free passes to shows or advanced records but for the most part, it is a thankless job. I went to see Thursday for the first time since I was in high school under the pretense that I was going to be on the guest list and could take photos. Evidently, these things don't often work out as planned. I took the journey to the Middle East in order to see them perform with opener Dillinger Escape Plan on December 19, 2009 but was met with myriad problems.

I arrived just before Dillinger Escape Plan was about to go on and I was filled to the brim with anticipation to hear new material from their upcoming release Option Paralysis which will hit stores on March 23, 2010. I was immediately letdown when a less-than-understanding doorman told me I wasn't on the list. I kindly pointed him in the direction of the list on the wall that bared my name. Apparently, this list was for a photo pass but had me listed with no tickets for the sold-out show despite the fact that I was told I had +1. This left in quite the predicament as I scrambled to find the number of my contact.

After making several calls to no avail, the venue finally released a ticket so I could buy it. Embarrassingly, I didn't have any money so I had to wait for my friend to get there so that I could borrow it. I finally got into the show and caught Thursday's entire set but regrettably missed Dillinger Escape Plan because of the whole ordeal. From what I gathered talking to people outside, they absolutely threw down and the new songs were excellent. This, of course, just made me more frustrated. I found the set list which I am posting below and it contains many of my favorites including "When Good Dogs Do Bad Things" and "43% Burnt".

1. Good Neighbor
2. Panasonic Youth
3. Fix Your Face
4. Sugar Coated Sour
5. Milk Lizard
6. When Good Dogs Do Bad Things
7. Mouth of Ghosts
8. Sunshine the Werewolf
9. Farewell, Mona Lisa
10. 43% Burnt

I am posting the teaser for Option Paralysis along with the cover art. This thing sounds like it is going to be incredible. I detect a hint of Tool influence around 4:41:

It's been over half a decade since I saw Thursday, but they had the same energy that they did back then. It's hard not to think of them as an older band whose time has passed yet the crowd was as amped as could be to hear old favorites. Their latest album, Common Existense, was filled with the emotional intensity of their best work and remains one of the more underrated releases of 2009. I wrote a more than favorable review of the album when it was released and I still feel the exact same way about the record to this day. They played songs from most of their catalog but I was certainly disappointed by the lack of any songs from their 1999 debut Waiting.

The band opened the set with "For the Workforce, Drowning", one of their most aggressive tracks and one of my favorites. The classics like "Understanding in a Car Crash" had their share of fan participation but people were not giving as much of a reaction for the newer ones. I was actually more excited to hear songs like "Subway Funeral", "Circuits of Fever", and "Beyond the Visible Spectrum". "Subway Funeral" had singer Geoff Rickly displaying his most emo rockstar moment as he leaned on the ceiling and belted the lyrics out above the crowd without using the microphone.

I particularly like "Circuits of Fever" which was my favorite song on Common Existence. It best exemplified their progression and contained some truly dynamic drumming. The biggest surprise was "Signals Over the Air", a song that I usually skipped when listening to War All the Time. For some reason, it just worked better as a live song for me; particularly due to how excellent the tone of the guitars sounded. After closing the set with the ballad "Love Has Led Us Astray", the band came out for an encore and played fan favorite "Jet Black New Year" with everyone singing the lyrics along with Geoff. The entire set list is below.

Thursday 12/19/09 set list:
1. For the Workforce, Drowning
2. Between Rupture And Rapture
3. The Other Side of the Crash/Over and Out (Of Control)
4. Paris in Flames
5. Understanding In A Car Crash
6. Resuscitation Of A Dead Man
7. Subway Funeral
8. At This Velocity
9. Division St.
10. Circuits of Fever
11. Beyond the Visible Spectrum
12. Signals Over The Air
13. Love Has Led Us Astray
14. Jet Black New Year

I left the venue and made the trek home in the first huge snowfall of the year, missing my bus transfer and walking the last mile or so in what would be one of the more emo feeling moments I've had; fitting I guess having just seen Thursday. In the end, I was disappointed with the outcome of the entire event. I had hoped to do an in-depth review with accompanying photography but I ended up settling with this disillusioned narrative a month later because of unforeseen events. It is a tale of frustration that will ultimately serve as a lesson in attending shows and making preparations so that something like this doesn't happen again. I figured that perhaps someone might be interested in the tales of those who work hard to try and get good stories and show reviews out there for the public. It was still great that I was able to catch Thursday's set and I will be at their next show around here, hopefully under better circumstances. For those of you who still haven't heard it and are interested in giving the album a shot, you can stream Common Existence below.

1 comment:

  1. ugh im liking thursday, should i kill myself?
    also, that dillinger mix is confusing... sounds decent though