'Full Collapse' pretty much has it all. It's ambient, rocking, soothing and angry all in one go, with songs that combine the full on brute force of a hardcore band with some of the sweetest melodies you'll come across. After the atmospheric introduction of 'A001' the band launch straight into the single 'Understanding In A Car Crash' and it's easy to see why this US mob are held in such high opinion. It maintains driving guitars throughout, yet has enough melody to keep you singing along in a similar way to any of the tracks off the Brand New record. Infact it's the attention to detail in the lyrics which also set this band apart from the myriad of others. 'Concealer' carries things on, and whilst not as instant as the previous track, is certianly well worthy of further examination. Again the lyrics are amazing, telling the tale of child abuse with vocals that are so emotional you feel that the singers are choking back the tears.
'Autobiography Of A Nation' is another lyrical stroke of genius, a pop at the US establishment which ends with the fantastic "everything you say you stole, every dream you dream you bought" refrain. 'A Hole In The World' comes complete with piano and sickening screams, before the album's second most 'obvious' track, 'Cross Out The Eyes'. Another track of sheer brilliance, and another about loss and alienation, it not only once again highlights how amazing Thursday are as musicians, but again the lyrics are as good as you'll ever find. "Hearing the words that choke memories into flatlines, I'm calling your name hoping for something to wash these dreams of you away." It's just perfection.
'Paris In Flames', so named because the track describes the destruction of something beautiful, really hits the spot again, proving that Thursday cannot really do any wrong. 'Standing On The Edge Of Summer' is another cracker, and although 'I Am The Killer' sounds a little bit like some of the other tracks on this record, once again the lyrics are phenomenal. Another tale of a failed relationship, the screwed up vocals near the end of the song are as desperate as you'll ever hear. It wouldn't be right not to maintain the album's excellence with 'How Long Is The Night?' and true to form the track, which is a tad slower than the others, is almost overwhelming in its storytelling. The immense pain that you sense in the "it's never over" mantra, or in the chorus, "I will never sleep again, I will never even close my eyes," is quite stunning. And to think that this band are playing the Reading and Leeds festivals excites the hell out of me.
I've had this album for quite a while now and never really got round to listening to it. But after putting it on to aide my review, I've fallen in love with this album all over again. It's a work of art, blistering, brutal and bloody brilliant - a masterpiece that any music fan must own. 5 stars, sir? I think so...