American screamo teams up with Japanese screamo on the recently released Thursday / Envy split EP on Temporary Residence Limited. The two powerhouse bands contribute songs to this limited release that is being sold strictly CD+LP only (there will not be a sole CD or LP available) and can only be found in independent record stores. There is also a hand printed limited edition version that can be ordered exclusively on their website of on their label’s site. Both bands comprise exceptional tracks and really do a great job in doing so on this release.
Formed in New Jersey around 1997, Thursday has been a staple in the post-hardcore scene. Having released multiple albums, the band has had a very successful career despite ping ponging from record label to record label after mishaps and disputes. Currently the band is signed with Epitaph records for this full length to be released in 2009.
Screamo experimental rock act Envy, hailing from Japan, are unique in their own way with songs sung in their native tongue layered over post hardcore music, as well as a little experimental chill out on some tracks. Well respected all over the world by many and commonly known for their explosions of screaming on songs, I was really looking forward to finally hearing them.
So how did the two come to unite? Truth is Thursday is a huge fan of the experimental Envy. Back in April the Thursday posted news of the release on their site:
“It’s our pleasure to announce a split release with one of our favorite bands in the world. We are currently in the studio recording tracks for a 12” release with Japan’s Envy. For those of you unfamiliar with Envy, they are an experimental, epic, lush post-rock band that’s heavier than just about anything we’ve ever heard. Despite the enormous geographical distances between us, the bands have evolved from the same thrashy underground post-hardcore scene. Honestly, there’s no way to properly describe them.”
The split CD started out with four tracks by Thursday and opens with the impressive “As He Climbed The Dark Mountain”. Geoff Rickly and crew provided a solid track full of the sporadic singing styles I grew accustomed to with their previous releases, layered with some sick guitar playing and insane drumming. I really enjoyed this track a lot and after hearing this I can not wait to hear their next full length.
The dark instrumental “In Silence” was more of something you would hear the Crystal Method crank out. The techno strong song is far from the post-hardcore material the band is known for and I myself loved it. Full of distorted synthesizers, electronic drum beats, and a mellow piano solo, this song really showed a different side to the band usually known for their screamo.
“An Absurd And Unrealistic Dream Of Peace” had it’s moments with more of an emo feel throughout the song and really did not do much for me. “Appeared And Was Gone”, another instrumental track, continued the dark trend and was remixed by Anthony Molina of the 90’s alt rock band Mercury Rev. The track once again is more of a techno experiment that had a God Lives Underwater feel, but was just amazing. Lyrics added to this track might have enhanced the song a little further.
Envy really impressed me with “An Umbrella Fallen Into Fiction”, having not heard any of their material before. The song started out slow and really reminded me of The Cure for some reason but with a Japanese spoken word behind it. Think slow Dir En Gray, that is until you hit just after the 4 minute mark and the song completely explodes with lead singer Tetsuya Fukagawa’s dishing out some insane screaming over a faster tempo. The song was quite beautiful throughout although my lack of understanding the Japanese language wished to be informed.
“Isolation Of A Light Source” had enough screaming to push you to the ground. Again, I had not the faintest idea of what was going on, but I enjoyed the severity of the screams added along with the heavy music. The final track on the other hand,“Pure Birth And Loneliness,” was a gentler track than the previous two Envy songs… that is until about the four minute mark again. Surprising screaming snuck its way into the mostly mellow song and you could tell how full of emotion it was.
This really is one of the best split CDs I have heard in a while. Being happily introduced to Envy on this split may have added to some of the charisma but I have been listening to the whole CD over and over and so far have not grown bored with either party contained.
Thursday’s instrumentals on the track were the winners as it was something unexpected yet appealing. I almost wish there were more tracks on the CD as I was left with a craving for more. That’s ok though because I can now get more involved with Envy’s catalog and no longer wonder why they were so enthralling to Thursday.
Want to hear? I found the following songs on the Temporary Residence Limited website:
Thursday – “As He Climbed The Dark Mountain”
Envy – “Isolation Of A Light Source”
And while I am at it, here are some videos from both bands:
Thursday – “At This Velocity”
(This song/video reflects a true story about the band almost being involved in a plane crash…hence the beginning)
Envy – “Scene”