Thrice - Red Sky (Cover Artwork)


Red Sky (2006)


Thrice is determined to have everyone hear their B-sides. Between 2005's If We Could Only See Us Now, iTunes, video games, vinyls, and this EP, Thrice will have released most of their known B-Sides to the public. Is this good or bad?

Well, Thrice's B-sides have always been hit or miss. "Flags of Dawn" is a kind of slow-paced ballad that may appeal to you if your favorite tracks from their latest album were the slower tracks. Lead singer Dustin Kensrue displays his strong vocal abilities here, while the rest of the track is just kind of boring.

"Weight of Glory" sees Thrice summoning some more hardcore elements, along with a more experimental side. I'd like to think they were listening to some Mars Volta while recording this. Dustin growls and yells his way through this track, while guitarist Teppei Teranishi gets a little more showcase here. The track closes with almost a minute of piano and drum beats, which actually enhances the song a little.

The rest of the EP's 6 tracks are comprised of live acoustic tracks, including a rendition of "Under a Killing Moon," from their 2003 effort The Artist in the Ambulance, along with "For Miles," "Red Sky," and "Of Dust and Nations" from Vheissu.

"Under a Killing Moon" is kind of refreshing to hear acoustic, but nothing really impressive. "For Miles" is stripped of its harder edge as an acoustic track, which doesn't really hurt it too much. I think the vocals could have used more energy, though. "Red Sky" is simply awesome as an acoustic track, becoming a little more folksy and a little less of a ballad; the song benefits a lot from the acoustic makeover. But it's not just that. Dustin Kensrue's performance is full of passion. Out of Thrice's many acoustic tracks, this is certainly the best. "Of Dust and Nations," my personal favorite track from Vheissu, loses too much energy as an acoustic track, and it's just kind of boring.

Overall, this EP just doesn't feel complete. "Lullaby," Thrice's most lyrically interesting (but musically boring) song from the Vheissu sessions is absent, and the live tracks just kind of seem like throw-ins. With only two new tracks, the band could have just offered this EP as a download.

Conclusion: This EP is for the fans (who didn't already have all of the tracks) and no one more.