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Released: Sep 6, 2011
Genre: Alternative Rock, Post-Hardcore
Number Of Tracks: 11
"Major/Minor" comes in with a louder, in your face album which delivers great intriguing moments that recalls "Vheissu", amazing relaxing moments and an album definetly worth the wait and every penny.
falloutrecon3, on september 23, 2011 3 of 4 people found this review helpful
Sound: First of all, I have to say that this is my very first review so be indulgent. Second, this part will be quite long, courage folks.
Being a big, big Thrice fan since "Identity Crisis" (2001) I had, as many ohter fans, to enlarge my musical orientation during the progression of this band. I like to think of Thrice by 3 phases:
1-"First Impressions", "Identity Crisis", "Illusion Of Safety", "Artist In The Ambulance" and If we could only see us now (1999-2005) Being the Punk/Post-Hardcore one.
2-"Vheissu", "The Alchemy Index Fire & Water", "The Alchemy Index Air & Earth" (2005-2008) As the Experimental/Art Rock one.
3-"Beggars", "Major/Minor" (2009-2011...) Being the Folkish/Grunge Rock, mostly forgetting all their past hardcore influences.
For "Major/Minor", they came up with a more mature, evolved and catchy sound than any of their latest releases. As always, Thrice's sound is rageful yet groovy, heavy yer calm, perfect. Only bad thing about this album is that Teppei's vocals are almost absent on the entire album.
Let's see this song by song:
01. "Yellow Belly": This is the first song they've released officially from that record and is a great way to introduce you into the album's mood and sound.
The song comes in with a real nice yet simple guitar riff with a nice groovy and grunge sound. The best part: The epic outro that is a nice crowd singing one. Great song.
02. "Promises": This song in my top 5 from this album and maybe from all Thrice's work. The main riff has this catchy and groovy thing that just's been stuck in my head for like a week straight, which is a great thing IMO. The best part(s): The pre-choruses and choruses.
03. "Blinded": An athmospheric tune more than a catchy one, a first in this album. This song's mood is a little softer and less heavy than the two first. Great thing from this track, the drums are prety fast considering the other instruments/voices. The beat part(?) : This isn't really a part, but the entire drumming is sick. Less favorite on the album(nice one though).
04. "Catarcts": This groovy-egyptian toned son of a bitch is a beast. Everything in this song is catchy with some heavy parts and moody ones. In this one, the other brother Beckenbridge has quite an amazing bassline. One of the best on the entire album. The best part: The intro riff and the vide throughout the track. Beast of a track.
05. "Call It In The Air": Pure sound, simply amazing and relaxing intro. Thrice at their best, mixing heavy tones and relaxing parts. The vocals? Masterwork by Dustin into the choruses followed by one of the heavier moments of latest Thrice's work, that was my very first WOW moment in "Major/Minor" followed by my second one, the heavy and angry outro! The best part: the magnificent outro.
06. "Treading Paper": And there it goes, my third WOW moment, god they're on fire, the riff following the calm intro has a nice 70's vibe just like the entire song. All i could tell myself listening to this was this: ________________. Nothing. Cannot tell anything, simply amazing, again. The best part(s): The first riff following the relaxing intro and the intriguing guitar in the outro.
07. "Blur": Fastest, heaviest, Vheissuest(?) track on this album. What I like about this song? It recalls me my favorite album of all time, "Vheissu" (2005) by it's complexity and very intriguing second verse with amazing drumming as always. Enough said. The best part(s): The second verse, the choruses and the heavy outro riff that really comes out of nowhere, thanks.
08. "Words In The Water": I was scared of this title, it reminded me of the "Water" EP, which I loved, don't get me wrong, but a song like one on this EP could've ruin this entire album mood. The first ballad out of three in the effort. Great vibe, nice mood and some tiny heavier parts that just helps the song being more powerful than it is. This in the longest track on "Major/Minor". The best part(?): Not really a part but the lead, indie rock guitar on this track is simply amazing.
09. "Listen Through Me": Gotta love the instrumental during the verses. Gotta love the pre-choruses. Gotta love Thrice. The best part (?): The lyrics and the vibe.
10. "Anthology": Best song of the album hands down. All in this song feels like a masterpiece. Incerdibly catchy from the vocals to the guitars, great chemistry by the two brothers Riley and Ed Beckenbridge on the rythm section, amazing crowd singing parts, and one of the best guitar riff on the entire album, you'll know which one by listening to it! The best part: From 0:00 to 4:27 to be as cool as some young youtubers.
11. "Disarmed": I don't know if this is the new tradition for Thrice, but keeping and epic rock ballad to end a record remind me of "Vheissu" with "Red Sky" and of course, "Beggars" with the song, "Beggars"!.. Gotta appreciate the bass lines in this and of course all the melodies delivered by Dustin on the vocals and Teppei on the guitars. The best part: the 2:30 riff, not because it's the heavier on the track, but it is pretty darn good from that until the end!
Long, long... Ranch? No (sorry, have been playing "Zelda" all night). Long long sound review I know but I'm not sorry. // 10
Lyrics: I will shorten this one. The lyrics are, as always, amazingly true, honest, poetic and complex. Dustin is a genius writer and any fans know that. Well fans, you won't be disapointed by this record. Dustin sound more and more like a bear on each album and haven't use big auto-tune on this one and it is believable, I just watched the Red Bull Studio Livestream and it was awesome.
Lyrical masterwork on this album: "Anthology".
Dustin used lyrics from every album and almost every song they've ever recorded and did an amazing job putting all that together to write a song, not even talking about the band's history.
While Dustin's vocal work is impressive throughout "Major/Minor", we do miss the back vocal support from Teppei who's making only some single harmonies. Some fans may be disapointed to see there is no more hardcore shouts on the album, I'm not, Thrice aren't these Thrice anymore, get over it. // 9
Overall Impression: In comparision with the other 3rd phase Thrice album, "Beggars", "Major/Minor" comes in with a louder, in your face album which delivers great intriguing moments that recalls "Vheissu", amazing relaxing moments and an album definetly worth the wait and every penny.
On a personnal note, my 3 favorite songs on this album are: "Promises", "Cataracts" and "Anthology". Those three tracks are a perfect summary of what the album is: A Groovy album with surprising moments followed by some heavy yet catchy moments and a nice indie vibe.
If this were stolen or lost (I must say that I got the Limited Vinyl Version), I would rebuy it at any price on Ebay or Craigslist because, it is simply perfect.
Beast of a record, thanks Thrice, again. // 10
CampbellZ929, on september 30, 2011 1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Sound: 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. // 10
Lyrics: 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. // 10
Overall Impression: 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. // 10