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Thursday - Kill the House Lights [CD/DVD] (Cover Artwork)

Thursday

Thursday: Kill the House Lights [CD/DVD]Kill the House Lights [CD/DVD] (2007)
Victory Records

Reviewer Rating: 4.5
User Rating:


Contributed by: JeloneJelone
(others by this writer | submit your own)

A decade after the major label grinder killed guitar-tastic, emotionally charged acts like Jawbreaker, Jawbox and many more, Thursday seemed like the next on the chopping block after announcing its split from Island Records earlier this year. Hell, it's exactly what happened to Jawbox: put out two g.
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A decade after the major label grinder killed guitar-tastic, emotionally charged acts like Jawbreaker, Jawbox and many more, Thursday seemed like the next on the chopping block after announcing its split from Island Records earlier this year. Hell, it's exactly what happened to Jawbox: put out two great, indie-backed post-hardcore albums, put out two great, major label-backed post-hardcore albums, break up. Yet, where such bands died sad deaths, Thursday carried on, putting out a stop-gap live/B-side/rarities CD/DVD combo, Kill the House Lights, on Victory Records.

Packed with visual goodies, the DVD portion could have been released solo -- that it comes with a CD is a zesty bonus. The feature presentation, the Kill the House Lights documentary, starts off as an invigorating look into the band's rise from basement shows to Warped Tour, from Eyeball to Island. The band members come off as funny and kind, with just a whiff of intense social awkwardness. Watching the guys talk about "Tone Geoff" Rickley's beginning as a vocalist, their high school and college years and touring feels more like a conversation than a DVD. These guys could be your friends.

At the same time, though, the film catches the band at a crossroads. While the film is generally awesome, one can't help but feel bummed by the ending. Thursday's accomplished a lot, but the band is still label-less, steady only in its will to survive.

"We surpassed every dream I had as a kid, and where do you go from there, you know?" is the last line, and it kind of kills off the good times. Please don't let this be a swan song.

Still though, it's a solid documentary, going through each of the band's albums in decent detail. Also included are a live show and a couple of videos of Thursday's cute, scamp-y hijinx. Who knew the guys who wrote "War All the Time" could be funny?

The CD half of Kill the House Lights is solid, too. Of utmost excitement to fans will be the new material that begins the disc. "Ladies and Gentleman: My Brother, The Failure" is a curb-stomp of an opener, a groovy hardcore number that recalls hints of Refused and Botch, but filtered through the Thursday spectrum. No one sings like Rickley, and that's a compliment. Dude gets epic here. Same goes for the rest of the band. Drummer Tucker Rule kicks out the jams while the angular fretwork of Tom Keeley, Steve Pedulla and Tim Payne rocks and/or rolls all over. Final kudos goes to whoever thought steel drums and synths would sound cool on the bridge, 'cause they do. Give keyboardist Andrew Everding a raise, clam flammit.

Thursday amps up the 'core on track two, "Dead Songs." Maybe it's unresolved anger at Island, but "Dead Songs" sure does throw down a lot in less than three minutes. The third new cut, "Voices on a String," is a little more in touch with last year's very cool A City by the Light Divided. The guitars are a little less crunchy and the synths more prominent.

From there, the CD trots out some hot rarities. "Panic on the Streets of London," a War All the Time B-side, shares two parts with "The Other Side of the Crash," but they're really cool parts so the repetition doesn't matter. Also included are instrumental snippets "A Sketch for Time's Arrow," "The Roar of Far Off Black Jets" and "Music from 'Kill the House Lights.'"

The CD rounds itself out with some live cuts and demos of popular tunes like "How Long Is the Night?" and "Paris in Flames." The demos are cool in a music historian way, especially the rougher mix of "Telegraph Avenue Kiss." They offer a view of how the band writes. But the live cuts are ho-hum. They're expertly performed and recorded, but like any live performance, you had to be there. The live material feels like filler, especially when there are other Thursday cuts that could've made it onto Kill the House Lights: "Jet Black New Year," from the Five Stories Falling live EP, or "Mass as Shadows," from In Honor: A Compilation to Beat Cancer, while already commercially available, would have been welcome additions.

Regardless of these nitpickings, though, Kill the House Lights will satisfy many a Thursday fan. Chock full of sound and vision, it is both an excellent placeholder while Thursday plans its next audio assault and a fine odds-n-ends collection.

 

 
People who liked this also liked:
The Blood Brothers - Burn Piano Island, BurnBear Vs Shark - TerrorhawkAgainst Me! - Searching For A Former ClarityRefused - The Shape of Punk to ComeNOFX - The DeclineThursday - A City by the Light DividedRise Against - Revolutions Per MinuteThe Bronx - The Bronx (2003)The Lawrence Arms - The Greatest Story Ever ToldSet Your Goals - Mutiny!

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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
muktar (March 20, 2008)

i like how he said zesty

HxCDancer810 (November 30, 2007)

dang this is gonna be a good one

paulrulzdood (November 29, 2007)

shit I saw Thursday not only without a barricade, but without a stage back in 2001. Roboto Project 2 venue in pittsburgh. My friend booked the show, $5 for Piebald, Thursday, The Lawrence Arms and Whatever It Takes (anti flag side project). Fuckin' sick. Thursdays drums weren't even mic'd. Only thing seperating the capacity 300 person crowd from the band was a few monitors. that venue got shut down shortly thereafter by the way.

paul

thus_spoke_sean (November 29, 2007)

No shit, really? Bumout. Seeing Thursday without a barrier would be incredible, no less at a show that was already pretty superb with Snapcase, Supertouch, 108 and Soul Control.

And I'm guessing Geoff was talking about the North Six, then.


yep, really. and i know, it would have been incredible. basically geoff was just saying how Snapcase and 108 were his two favorite hardcore bands, and how bummed he was that he was being denied the oppertunity to play with them, so im glad to hear that he got to do a song at least.

annnnnnd, i was a little drunk at the time, don't remember which venue, but yeah, more than likely North Six.

fallingupwards84 (November 28, 2007)

Paris In Flames is by far the band's best song

inagreendase (November 28, 2007)

thats awesome i wish i could have been there. I was talking with him a couple months ago and express how pissed he was that Thursday couldn't play that show. I guess the Venue wouldnt let Thursday play, something about them playing there before and not enforcing the venue's security requests.

No shit, really? Bumout. Seeing Thursday without a barrier would be incredible, no less at a show that was already pretty superb with Snapcase, Supertouch, 108 and Soul Control.

And I'm guessing Geoff was talking about the North Six, then.

GlassPipeMurder (November 28, 2007)

"panic on the streets.." is also one of my favorites on this.

steveman (November 28, 2007)

"panic on the streets of london"
I lol'd.

Panic On The Streets Of Healthcare City ended up being one of my favorite songs on the album, just below Ladies And Gentleman... I also hadn't heard too much about this before I picked it up, and when I heard Tim Kasher come in, bricks were shat.

When they played the song live the drummer started playing the Art Is Hard intro, and for a few fleeting seconds I thought a cover might happen.

thus_spoke_sean (November 28, 2007)

you and me both, scott

thus_spoke_sean (November 28, 2007)

Geoff sang a song with 108 sunday at the J. Robbins benefit.

thats awesome i wish i could have been there. I was talking with him a couple months ago and express how pissed he was that Thursday couldn't play that show. I guess the Venue wouldnt let Thursday play, something about them playing there before and not enforcing the venue's security requests.

Michael_Berryman (November 28, 2007)

Geoff sang a song with 108 sunday at the J. Robbins benefit.

inagreendase (November 28, 2007)

and please, never ever compare thursday to jawbox again. please.

Why not? Jawbox put out a few albums on Dischord (an indie) and jumped to a major with mostly unsuccessful commercial results. Thursday put out an album each on Eyeball and Victory (indies) and jumped to a major with fairly unsuccessful commercial results. Sounds apt to me.

Pretty sure I'm not seeing "Thursday, RIYL: Jawbox" in this review.

billnye (November 27, 2007)

and please, never ever compare thursday to jawbox again. please.

brown (November 27, 2007)

score is for ladies and gentlemen, my brother: the failure.

seriously, knocked out autumn leaves revisited as their second best song ever and is only overshadowed by jet black new year.

if thats the direction they plan to follow, then I have HIGH hopes for the band.

GlassPipeMurder (November 27, 2007)

i find it amusing how both bands the reviewer cites begin with "Jaw". oh wait, i did that too on my Briggs review with Cockney Rejects and Cock Sparrer.

maverick (November 27, 2007)

Fuckin' hell, italics tags will be the death of me.

-Scott

maverick (November 27, 2007)

One of the best band DVDs I've ever seen. The part where Steve, I think, is saying, "So we turned in Full Collapse to Victory, and they didn't really care about it," and then it cuts to Tony Brummel saying, "The first time I heard Full Collapse, I cried" -- that was fucking HYSTERICAL.

I was most worried about the Thursday/Victory drama from '01-'02 being glossed over since this was coming out on Victory, but they did a hell of a job addressing everything. I loved the film.

I give major props to the CD portion, too, mainly because I consider myself a Thursday fan and I had never heard any of those tracks before -- compared to something like Alkaline Trio's Remains, where I already knew almost the entire disc (same with the upcoming HWM rarities collection), it's mightily impressive to put out a B-sides and rarities disc where someone who has been a fan for years has never heard any of it.

Great review, too.

-Scott

HeresLookinAtYou (November 27, 2007)

Nice.

paulrulzdood (November 27, 2007)

Totally worth the 9.99 I spent at best buy to pick this up. 1 hr 45 min documentary with great interviews and footage, awesome 45 minute high quality live set and a bonus CD. The bonus CD is the only aspect that falls a bit short, it really should just be a 3 song e.p.,, the only songs anyone other than super hardcore Thursday fans will find interesting are the 3 new ones. I don't care about alternate versions of previously released songs or live cuts, but "my brother the failure" is the shit and the other 2 are really solid as well, all 3 easily could have bumped 3 of the weaker songs off of "city by the light" and made it a really strong album. makes me excited for whats to come from these guys.

johnny_J (November 27, 2007)

I've seen the DVD, and it's definately one of the best out there. The B-sides have their ups and downs, but nonetheless worth it.

fallingupwards84 (November 27, 2007)

nine?

colin (November 27, 2007)

the only reason i haven't reviewed this is because i haven't seen the movie, which seems like the main reason to buy.

the CD is awful. it could have been released as a 7" or single with the first two songs being the only ones. however, those two, "ladies and gentlemen" and "dead songs" fucking KILL.

the dvd bonus audio is fantastic. the bonus of i am the killer is a .

i haven't seen the flick but as a die hard thursday fan could see it really being great, but it doesn't change the fact they just put "how long is the night" with a new intro and a mundane loop closing track on the cd. from what i've seen / heard it gets a 6.

Holy_Balls (November 27, 2007)

I hope I get this for christmas. Thursday is an underrated band who get undeserved shit for no reason.

eatdogs (November 27, 2007)

seriously, the dvd portion of this album is excellent. you really get down and personal with the band. their major label mangager stated that island wanted them to be the next nirvana. well, thursday can only be, well, thursday. the label wanted 'hits' and thursday gave them what they could. it's a real emotional, (no pun intended) ride for these guys and you can see it all unfold. the early years are a real treat as well as the victory years. once they hit the major's, you can see their frailty though, and it is a little depressing. oh, the music is great by the way.

GlassPipeMurder (November 27, 2007)

haven't seen the DVD but the music is great. never thought i could get into Thursday as much, but was thoroughly impressed.

billnye (November 27, 2007)

a 9? are you fucking kidding me?

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