Alter The Press!


Live Review: Thursday and Circa Survive - Kings College, London - 19/4/2011

It’s been a long time since Thursday toured over in the UK. Headlining the Taste of Chaos tour to support the release of Common Existence in 2009 was never going to be the same as a legit, more intimate Thursday show. So the announcement of three sporadic headline dates in the UK to celebrate the release of ‘No Devolución’ and the 10th Birthday of ‘Full Collapse’ was what every Thursday fan had been waiting for.

With Circa Survive coming back to London after destroying two headline shows last summer, you could be inclined to call this a joint headline. And after releasing one of the best albums of 2010 with ‘Blue Sky Noise’, Circa proved their "top of the bill" pedigree with a performance filled with Anthony Green's familiar intensity. The set list was a mix of old and new, but with fans now so accustomed to the new release, tracks ‘Imaginary Enemy’ and ‘Get Out’ saw the band at their peak, with everything sounding huge and deliciously tight, aided by the addition of some characteristically erratic behaviour from Green.

It’s hard to describe the anticipation for Thursday felt by the audience, having just released arguably one of the best albums of their career, fans were eager to get their teeth into the new material. However one prospect that loomed was hearing ‘Full Collapse’ played front to back, something that I for one never imagined witnessing when first listening all those years ago. When the New Brunswick legends finally strolled onto the stage - opening with ‘Fast To An End’ - instantly the realisation dropped that this new material sounds absolutely huge live. The audience were then introduced to ‘Past And Future Ruins’, ‘Magnets Caught In A Metal Heart’ and ‘No Answers’. It’s obvious from the smiles on the faces of Thursday that they are more than proud of this release, and the reaction from the crowd just cemented their feelings.

What came next was something that everyone in the audience will remember for a long, long time. After crashing into ‘Understanding In A Car’, what followed was a 40 minute relentless barrage which left the crowd gasping for air. Yet more importantly it demonstrated why Thursday have had such prevalent influences on the Hardcore scene over all these years. Up on that stage ‘Full Collapse’ didn’t sound like it’s ripe old age - the lyrics may be filled with youthful ignorance, which Geoff jokingly eludes to – yet these tracks still hold the power and relevance they did back in 2001. Just hearing ‘Cross Out The Eyes’ and ‘Paris In Flames’ back-to-back felt ridiculous, but for songs like ‘Concealer’, ‘I Am Killer’ and ‘Wind-Up’ to make their way back onto the stage was truly special.

To bolster the pride that Thursday have in ‘No Devolución’ their encore consisted solely of ‘Turnpike Divides’, which already sounds like a classic. Its huge soaring riffs and full speed momentum demonstrates a Thursday that still have a grasp of those ‘Full Collapse’ roots, as Geoff explained - this may not be a hardcore record – but this is definitely Thursday. Still holding the ferocious energy they did back in their New Jersey basement. This is a band that has never faltered in its progression, and whose members have never lost enthusiasm over all these years, holding a voice and influence that is still pertinent today. And tonight in London, delivering one of the best, most passionate live performances you will have the pleasure of witnessing.

Connor O'Brien

Alter The Press!