Major/Minor review by Thrice

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  • Released: Sep 6, 2011
  • Sound: 10
  • Lyrics: 10
  • Overall Impression: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 10 Gem
  • Users' score: 8.8 (52 votes)
Thrice: Major/Minor

Sound — 10
I can't think of a reason why Thrice shouldn't be my favorite band in the world right now. "Major/Minor" leaves next to nothing to be desired in a modern rock album. Everything that Thrice has done well in the past is present here in droves upon droves. While not being overly progressive in the vein of "The Alchemy Index" EP's, and seeming slightly more filled out than the unabashed minimalism of "Beggars", "Major/Minor" succeeds at being both raw and sonic and captures the sound of a band that has reached its summit. For those of you who simply can't hit the skip button past "Deadbolt", I apologize because this album may sail over your head. But for the rest of us, this album shows Thrice more focused and more centered than they've ever been.

Lyrics — 10
Lyrically, Dustin Kensrue is without equal. That's not to say he simply parrots SAT words one after the other but there's a careful, poetic quality to his words that seems to extend far beyond his years. As if that weren't enough, Kensrue puts forth a vocal effort that is both singular and powerful. On 'Disarmed' he croons and moves softly through watery moments while on "Blur" he manages to unleash some of the buzz-saw ferocity that helped put Thrice on the map years ago. While Kensrue is arguably the greatest (and a good candidate for most underrated) front man in modern rock, Kensrue never comes off as preening or superficial. There's a veritable gravity to his words and the emotion behind them that makes you realize he isn't just feigning profundity, he's truly found it.

Overall Impression — 10
Teppei Teranishi has come a long way from post-hardcore shredding and he drives that point home on gems like "Treading Paper" and "Call It In The Air". His playing is calculated and is less about mach 3 soloing than crafting ambient, mood inducing leads. There's still fire there, though, and like Dustin Kensrue he isn't afraid to cut loose several times throughout the record. The same goes for the brothers Breckenridge who continue to put forth phenomenal work in the rhythm section. While Eddie is once again nothing the unsung hero out of the quartet, Riley delivers his greatest performance to date. He's no Danny Carey or Mike Portnoy and he doesn't need to be. He bends and curves Thrice's grooves seamlessly, never fighting more of the spotlight than what he absolutely needs. If "Major/Minor" is anything, it's a snap-shot of Thrice's greatest, most triumphant moments. In the song "Blur", Kensrue sings - "the shutter opens but never closes, I am lost/ Waylaid in light trails" If that's the case, then what an amazing light storm to get lost in". Even the weakest tracks carry more than enough weight - there are no throwaways on this album - which is important, because when you do arrive at the album's crown jewel, the flawless "Anthology", it makes it seem like an added bonus to an already rewarding listening experience. "Major/Minor" may not reinvent the wheel, but it does define the Thrice back-catalogue, which is impressive in and of itself. The darks and lights, the band's highs and lows throughout the years - it's all here, presented without bias. And maybe that's the beauty of Thrice, they've nothing to hide and nothing left to prove. This, simply, is as good a modern rock album as you will ever find.

3 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Dustin is one of the most underrated front men in rock today no doubt. But the glue in this band is Riley. IMO he IS THE MOST UNDERRATED DRUMMER IN ROCK. As a guitarist I don't know much about drumming and drummers but Riley is an incredible drummer. Can't wait to see them in one week Revolution Live Ft. Lauderdale!!
    I wish I liked this album as much as everyone else. Dont get me wrong its a very good one, but I wouldnt call it a masterpeice. Maybe its just cause i'm always super critical of Thrice because theyre my favorite band
    They were incredible once again at Revolution back in October. So sad to see them for perhaps the last time come May for the farewell tour. Excited for the set list though. The last 3 times I've seen them set list was basically the same. Last 2x they ended with Awake and avenge the dead which was unexpected the first time. The outro is epic. Teppei put one foot up on his stage monitor and delivered a mind blowing intro to one of the heaviest moments in the entire thrice discography to end those shows. The bright white lights were in sync with the fills in-between the heavy dropped tuning palm muting and put the crowd into a hypnotic frenzy. Every time I see this band there seems to be some technical difficulties which is expected with the incredible variety they bring to the live shows. At the end of Dust of Nations Teppei's pedal board went out so we missed out on that...and it took a while to fix so they busted out "come all you weary" which is another favorite of mine. We here in South Florida haven't heard anything really from the Alchemy Index minus Fire-breather and the messenger. Those two are pretty predictable followed by earth will shake since they use the Drop A tuning for the three songs. I WOULD LOVE to hear some more Alchemy Index Vol II water. I know there are the haters out there saying they want their skate punk post hardcore artist in the ambulance play as loud and heavy as you can stuff but I really dig digital sea and of course the whaler. Riley absolutely kills it on that song. It'd be nice to hear "sky is falling" which us south Floridians have yet to hear live or "digging my own grave" My favorite moment from the Orlando show with Brand new that for some reason the temperature was at 55 degrees inside the venue was "Doublespeak" great song and very cool to see teppei doing double duty on the keys and guitar. Another rare moment on the beggars tour at Revolution either DK or Teppei messed up the intro to all the world is mad and they had to start it over. Something I've never seen but cool to see them address that. Kind of took the energy out out but came back as the continued into "the weight" which I feel "promises" is kind of like the Volume II of that song. Of course we have our drunk idiots down here screaming deadbolt which honestly would not make a difference to me if they played it or not. I prefer "kill me quickly" over deadbolt any day.