Tues May 18
1 SW 3rd
I got the Thermals song "No Culture Icons" stuck in my head over a year ago, and it's still there. In fact, you can't even mention The Thermals around me without the song's lyrics--"Hardly art, hardly starving/ hardly art, hardly garbage"--spewing from my mouth like pea soup from that Exorcist chick's mouth. You think their songs are catchy? Try living above them. The Thermals' drummer, Jordan Hudson, used to live downstairs from me; every time he and his then-brand-new band practiced and sent songs up through the floor, another riff from their first record, More Parts Per Million (Sub Pop), embedded in my brain like a hookworm.
If you've ever had to listen to your neighbor's band practice, you know the frustration that accompanies hearing composition-in-progress: stop and start guitars, drum solos that blast off into nowhere, vocals woefully off-key. But this was never the case with the Thermals. Every practice was a tight core sample of their balls-out live show; even sans audience, they don't fuck around.
The band's poppy energy and irreverent, blast-all enthusiasm, and all that youthful bombast carries further into their second record, Fuckin' A. They chose that title, in fact, "to bust Sub Pop's balls," Hutch Harris says with requisite frontman bravado. "It's like taking your clothes off at a show; some people like it, some people don't... but it gets attention."
It must be nice to have the confidence to "bust Sub Pop's balls." but then again, when you got it, you got it, and The Thermals have no shortage of "it." Fuckin' A continues in The Thermals ultra pep and scrungy pop, can't-help-but-love-it punk-hook vein, with Harris' vocals clear as a siren and belting out the lyrics you'll be singing with into next week. They cooked up another powerful, non-stop dose of what you want--that punky chemistry and energetic blend of spastic devil-may-care attitude, like "we don't need drugs to go ballistic"--so for fuck's sake, why not go out and get it?