In the post-hardcore pantheon, the New Jersey guys of Thursday are millennial gods. Led by the unapologetically erudite frontman Geoff Rickly, in the late '90s and early '00s their early loud-soft aesthetic helped define what would later come to be known — often pejoratively — as "screamo." Now the band is in a strange marketing position. To those who gave Thursday only a cursory listen from the beginning, that misapplied genre tag, long inaccurate, has been hard to shake. To younger kids who have grown up with derivative screamo sounds in mainstream rock, Thursday is, funnily, not scream-y enough. Still, the open-eared have continued to embrace the band, and the most loyal fans have stuck from the beginning, continuing to follow Thursday through increasingly weird musical terrain. Their most recent album, Common Existence, was released this past February on Epitaph Records and flies free of genre constraints. It's crushing when it needs to be, but at other times it's spacey, stamped with the undeniable influence of British shoegaze acts like Ride and My Bloody Valentine. Meanwhile Rickly's stylized lyrical narratives are, he says, influenced by authors like David Foster Wallace, Martin Amis and even Thomas Pynchon.
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