Consider the Thief - Soldiers and Saints (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

Consider the Thief

Soldiers and Saints (2008)


Post-hardcore as a musical identity seems to be at an interesting crossroads in 2008. Many of the acts who have helped push it into mainstream consciousness (Fugazi, At the Drive-In, Blood Brothers) have either broken up or entered into indefinite hiatuses, while others have perceived enough interest in the genre to reunite or end their hiatuses (Rival Schools, Glassjaw, Hot Water Music). So it seems it would be anyone's guess as to the future of the movement.

Meanwhile, there are still plenty of bands pushing ahead with post-hardcore, like our subject here, Consider the Thief. Co-formed by former Dance Gavin Dance guitarist Sean O'Sullivan, who quit that band shortly before the unfortunately hilarious exit of their co-frontman, Jon Mess last fall, the band blends a well-crafted mixture of heaviness and melody reminiscent of what has catapulted bands like Thursday into mass popularity.

Consider the Thief's strong suit lies in their rich compositions, with a tremendous depth and tiers of texture that somehow never sounds muddy even under the multiple layers of instrumentation. "Between Man and Machine" evolves effortlessly from an angsty, two-step façade to an upward spiral that floats along comfortably before merging with aggression at the number's end. The problem with this formula is that many of the other songs feel like they ascend aimlessly, like a burning fuse that never reaches the point of explosion. And with the average track well over four and a half minutes in length, this occasionally gets cumbersome. However, the well-structured compositions rarely get monotonous and the various vocal deliveries that range from rough-throated barking to melodic wails keep things moving. "In Time" is the EP's best track, clocking in at a relatively swift 3:16, but more importantly featuring some of the band's best lyrics: "I am the fleeting fear to swim that brings you back to shore; the hopes that hold you by the anchor. The unmanageable sum of days that never come; the strings that bind you by the fingers. I am the hours earned in vain, the empty time you gain, from storing up your hopes; bereaved and bottled for tomorrow with all of your todays."

Consider the Thief probably doesn't care much about the current state of post-hardcore, because it doesn't affect the quality of songs they write. While they may have a bit of ironing out in the future, this EP has set expectations high for their upcoming debut full-length.