A decade after the release of the genre-defining Full Collapse, New Brunswick, NJ’s post-hardcore band Thursday uses its sixth studio album, No Devolución, to break the mold it set.
In a graceful progression, the band takes everything it’s done in its past—the urgency of Full Collapse, the experimentation of A City By The Light Divided, the cinematic composition of the Thursday/Envy split—and magnifies it. The album opener, “Fast To The End,” is a burst of heavy bass and intricate guitars, with Geoff Rickly’s voice at its softest and most melodic.
“No Answers” begins like a fuzzed-out Cure b-side with organ-style synthesizers over a drum machine-like beat. Rickly’s quiet echoes hover over the instrumentation like a mist, then guitar pedal effects cut through like gravity, pulling down through the atmospherics until keyboard notes fade out the sounds.
“Sparks Against The Sun” layers Andrew Everding’s piano notes underneath Tom Keeley and Steve Pedulla’s distorted guitars and Tim Payne’s resonating bass. Rickly’s vocal bite comes back in the heavier “Open Quotes,” and “Past And Future Ruins” is a full-fledged assault by Tucker Rule, with ricocheting kick and tom drum patterns. “Empty Glass” sounds like a funeral requiem with drawn out organ-synth and chilling vocals.
“Turnpike Divides” is the album’s stand-out track, where heavier, older Thursday meets the band’s newer swirling, sweeping styles. The title and lyrics suggest loyalty to New Jersey roots, with Rickly singing “Home is the place you can never escape/From the Camden City graves to the edge of the Palisades.” The album closes on the same theme with the eight-minute-long epic “Stay True.”
Producer David Fridmann (Flaming Lips, MGMT) helped the band explore the lush landscape of experimental indie rock, fully blending it into Thursday’s post-hardcore backbone to create a more modern take on a sound bred in basements in the suburbs of New Jersey. No Devolución is an evolution in Thursday’s sound, pushing past its boundaries and taking it further than it’s ever gone. The result is a beautifully poignant and cinematic album, a post-hardcore masterpiece.