When the band describes their past albums as two-dimensional, you kind of have to laugh. Anyone with ears can tell that Thrice have always been different. Thrice have always been above the competition, making music infinitely more challenging and satisfying than many of their peers. While bridging the gap between the Warped Tour and Ozzfest audiences, Thrice have put out three mature and lyrically profound albums, all while getting virtually no recognition from the mainstream. With “Vheissu,” all that is likely to change. Something this good is improssible to ignore.
It’s taken me quite a while to absorb this album. To sit down and actually write a review. Albums like this one are tricky to describe, especially in this case, where the music can’t be categorized. I didn’t know what to expect when I picked up this album in October, but what I heard that night on the ride home was not what I was expecting. Thrice have thrown us through a loop. “Vheissu” is more focused on lyrics and dense, mesmerizing musical landscapes. Nearly gone are the punch-to-the-gut riffs of Teppei Teranishi, while frontman Dustin Kensrue is put front and center, as best evidenced by “The Earth Will Shake” and the massive closing number, “Red Sky.” Granted, “Hold Fast Hope” will feel like home, as will “Image Of The Invisible” and “Between The End And Where We Lie,” but most of this album will take the average Thrice listener by surprise. The liner notes do an excellent job of showing where the band is coming from. In the beginning, the band cites Radiohead’s “Kid A” and Deftones’ “White Pony” as major inspirations, and perhaps that can give you an idea of what to expect. Thrice are simply a band tired of playing the same old kinds of songs, so on “Vheissu” they have created a new style for themselves.
You might not like it at first, but give it time. I promise no disappointment. If you discount this album, you’ll be sorry later. It’s quite simply a masterpiece. But then again, what did you expect from Thrice? They always deliver a hundred percent, above what is is expected. They blew away my expectations, and now I absolutely cannot wait to hear what these guys have in store for us next.