Alchemy Index I & II (Dig) CD, Import
This fall marks the release of the first two volumes of the series--Fire & Water--while Earth & Air are scheduled for a spring debut. For Thrice, it's the realization of a year-long process of writing and recording, which was done primarily in the band's own studio and engineered by guitarist Teppei Teranishi, without the assistance of an outside producer.
Thrice fans will likely find the thundering strains of Fire to be the most familiar of the four EPs, with the kind of blistering riffs and captivating melodies the band has built a career upon. From the opening bombast of "Firebreather" to the towering, unforgettable "Burn the Fleet," with its Elliot Smith meets Isis vibe, Fire exhibits a Thrice who still know how to punish with decibels, and with greater force and impact than ever before.
Water, on the other hand, offers some of the most subdued textures the band have explored to date, and makes extensive use of a palette of electronic sounds, particularly for rhythms and synthesized effects. Haunting and beautiful, Water is an aural aquatic voyage as serene as it is somber, with the shimmering bliss of "Open Water" naturally coexisting with the dark, moody "The Whaler" and the groundbreaking and evocative instrumental track, "Night Diving."
I've listened to this album for years and still am amazed how much I love these songs.
These disks get better and better each time I listen. I feel this might be on its way to becoming my favorite. It took a few listens to get what Vhiessu was about, but before long, I realized how perfect that record was, and that it was my favorite of all their albums. I feel the same thing happening again. Fire is the blistering assault that should be pretty easier to digest for most Thrice fans. Water is more challenging for me, but it's really getting to me now. The Whaler and Kings On The Main, are blowing my mind. We'll see how it goes in a few weeks!
So, if you are ready to try something that is very different from their previous work, but still bears their stamp, I think you'll be rewarded. If that's not what you are after.....there is no doubt something else on the market for you to enjoy....
But seriously, buy this record. This is a band who is really forging ahead and doing amazing things. Buy it. Buy it. Buy it. It's very very good.