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on February 17, 2009
Some bands, if they've been around long enough and make enough music, eventually end up making an album that sounds like a conglomerate of all their previous albums. Over the course of the first 5 songs on Common Existence, it sounds like Thursday took the energy and bleakness of songs like "For the Workforce, Drowning" or "Jet Black New Year" and mixed it with some of the straight out rock from Full Collapse, specifically "Paris in Flames" and "Cross Out the Eyes." The atmosphere of War all the Time is there and the energy of Full Collapse is impossible to miss. Common Existence just sounds like a natural and welcome progression of the bands sound.

You can hear elements of the punk, hardcore and progressive rock that has always been a part of Thursdays sound since they first emerged from the basements of New Jersey. There are high-energy tracks destined to be concert favorites like "Resurrection of a Dead Man" and "Friends in the Armed Forces." I found myself singing "For The Workforce, Drowning" (one of, if not the best songs Thursday ever wrote) after I listened to "Resurrection of a Dead Man" for the first time. It's the perfect way to start off the album. From the beginning you get a shot of energy, a sense of urgency. The mixture of hardcore and punk is back and it's a little dirtier than before. Thursday has found a way to take the two genres and craft their own sound, again, just as they did with Full Collapse. A lot of these songs sound like they could have been recorded at the same time as one of the best songs the band has ever written, "Jet Black New Year."

"Beyond the Visible Spectrum," "Circuits of Fever" and "Subway Funeral" really standout as examples of the new life and sound Thursday has found. There's a fresh sound there, something that sounds so new and yet so familiar. The heavier use of the keyboards really stands out and gives the band a new dimension, something that never felt fully explored before. Listening to "Circuits of Fever" and "Beyond the Visible Spectrum" gives the listener a sense that the band has grown. And if you've been a Thursday fan and know any of their previous material, you know it's different but at the same time, you know it's Thursday.

There's a dirtiness to Common Existence that harkens all the way back to Thursdays first album, Waiting, released nearly 10 years ago. Part of the reason for the nostalgia is the production but there's also a sense that the band is less concerned with melody and focused more on rocking out. But they still somehow find the perfect balance between the two that made Full Collapse so amazing. But it's a different mixture. "As He Climbed the Dark Mountain" and "Last Call" are great examples of how well they are able to mix hardcore, emo, punk and straight rock and roll.

The biggest things that stand out on Common Existence are the vocals and the use of the keyboards. The vocals feel less prominent than before. Geoff just doesn't sound as loud, which could be a good thing for a lot of people. Geoff has a voice that is either loved or hated, there doesn't seem to be any middle ground. On previous albums the vocals seemed to soar above the music, rising up and taking center stage. Now they feel buried a little bit within the music. Rather than standing out, they melt into the songs, mixing better with the guitars and the drums. It works well.

But what really gives this album its uniqueness is the excellent use of the keyboards. They never felt fully utilized before - at least not consistently over the course of a whole album. On Common Existence they feel more prominent and it gives the album a real shot in the arm. It adds another element to the excellent hardcore/punk sound the band has crafted, or reinvented, depending on how you look at it.

As far as I was concerned, Thursday was a dead band. I lost track of them with "A City By the Light Divided" and after "Kill The House Lights," an album that felt like a goodbye release, they stunned me with their split on Temporary Residence with Envy and have again surprised me with the quality of Common Existence. After listening to their newest album, it feels like Thursday is a band resurrected. Common Existence feels like a breath of fresh air, almost more so for Thursday themselves rather than for the listener. It's not the same Thursday I used to love, but the energy is still there and it feels like they have found a second wind, a new life.
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VINE VOICEon April 7, 2009
From the moment I heard "Understanding in a Car Crash" on MTV in the summer of 2001, I was completely hooked by Thursday. My friends thought I was crazy, and couldn't understand what my obsession with them was. They have always offered something different, something unique among similar bands. Even though my music taste back then was not very established yet, Thursday remains sort of a "black sheep" of my music taste, if you will. What I mean is I don't listen to many artists similar to them at all. The most similar I can think of is At the Drive-In. In fact, I generally don't even listen to popular artists that are being played on MTV or mainstream radio stations. Quite frankly, so many of them suck that it has become a waste of my time to even consider it. However, I think this solidifies the fact that Thursday have broken limits and became truly far-reaching within the music world.

Fast-forward 8 years. Here we are: Thursday's fifth full-length release. I enjoyed "War All the Time" and "A City by the Light Divided" about the same as "Full Collapse," but when I first popped this in, I was astounded. I don't think Thursday has changed THAT much. They're still doing what they always did best - being aggressive while maintaining good and interesting melodies, lyrics and song structures, all while pushing the boundaries.

"Resuscitation of a Dead Man" has done what the opening songs on every other album have done - start off with an instant blast of intense energy. This and the next three tracks easily sound like they could have been on Full Collapse or War all the Time; the only difference is maybe a tinge of keyboards filling out the sound. I think the keyboards really add a diverse element to the band that it was missing before. I love the short keyboard "solo" in "You Were the Cancer" and really can't say that it ruins any track.

"Time's Arrow" is Thursday's attempt at an acoustic semi-ballad. It marks a deviation from the rest of the record and seems like their most experimental song to date, with a psychedelic middle instrumental section with swirling vocals and "backwards" sounding acoustic strumming. I have to say, it's one of my least favorite songs on here, but it's still pretty good, and I like how the band is experimental with new approaches. It also provides some breathing room and time to get excited for the next rush of energy.

My personal favorite song on the album is "Beyond the Visible Spectrum." It adds a lot of keyboards to the main chorus line, which some people may puke at the thought of, but you have to hear it to really understand that it is very well done. It's a fast keyboard melody with all other instruments still remaining, and the verse builds up a perfect development to it. Another one of my favorite tracks is "Circuits of Fever," which has a bit slower pace than most of their songs and an irregular structure, but has a unique atmosphere with echoed vocals, and keyboards. I think my third favorite track is "As he Climbed the Dark Mountain," which blends a perfect amount of aggression (some screams still linger here) with great melody and atmosphere.

Most people are not going to agree with what I am about to say, and that's truly understandable, but, I think this is Thursday's best album so far. I loved Full Collapse, and "Understanding" had the sheer power to make me a dedicated fan from the start, but here I think they have further established their sound. There will always be people who will like nothing but Full Collapse, and always want another one. They're way beyond that now. Bands don't make the same album twice, and it's still there if you want to listen to it. I still think several songs on this album still have a Full Collapse tinge to them, but there are also several songs that assure the listener they have evolved, just like any band will do. All I know is I have been more addicted to this album than any previous one. I played almost nothing else for the first two weeks, and I think I've already listened to this more than "War" or "City". Thank you Thursday for a superb release and I hope there is more to come.
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on February 21, 2009
It has been well documented that Thursday have struggled over the past couple of years. "A City by the Light Divided" was not very well received, and they were dropped from their label. Many people still feel 2001's "Full Collapse" was the high water mark for this band. On the other hand, I enjoyed their previous two releases just as much if not more than "Full Collapse." Although "Full Collapse" was well executed stripped down post hardcore, Thursday have completely transcended that genre over the past couple years... and that is certainly something to be proud of.

Thursday have quite noticeably changed their approach to songwriting as of late. While the essence of the band is the same, they have added a lot more texture to their music. This should not have been surprising in the least as they made keyboardist Andrew Everding a full time member of the band before the last album. They utilized him well on songs like "Counting 5-4-3-2-1" and "We Will Overcome", and guess what, this CD is no exception. The songs are even more atmospheric. "As he climbed the dark mountain" is epic. The last minute and a half of "Beyond the Visible Spectrum" is almost ethereal. "Circuits of Fever" is also a standout in that respect, with the reverberated distant vocals. The atmosphere is ever present on "Common Existence."

The atmosphere is there, but what really makes this CD superior to its predecessors is the execution. Their other four CDs didn't have home run songs like "Resuscitation of a Dead Man" or "Subway Funeral." Thursday even brings things to a halt for the slow, acoustic "Time's Arrow" to keep things interesting. The album closer "You Were the Cancer" starts off slow, but quickly gains steam, and finishes the album off in a face melting manner. This album has everything that Thursday fans love about the band. The energy, the great lyrics, and songs to please fans of all their eras, perhaps save "Waiting."

This CD is well worth the listen, and at $7.99 at Bestbuy and apparently here, there is no excuse for not hearing it. Sure, there will always be the "Full Collapse" fans, but that is their loss. This is another excellent CD in which Thursday have tweaked their highly recognizable sound for the better. Highly recommended!
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on October 22, 2009
I'm new Thursday fan...I can't believe I didn't know about them until recently...but no matter. I saw them in LA a couple of weeks ago and I've listened to Common Existence start to finish 3 or 4 times now and I just gotta say...it keeps getting better and better...I love it when that happens. What's really weird is I don't normally listen to this kind of music...I'm more of a Radiohead, or White Stripes kind listener. Favorite songs...hard to choose, but Circuits of Fever, Friends in the Armed Forces, Resuscitation of a Dead Man, all are awesome...Great music...Great lyrics...Great passion!!! ROCK ON!!!
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on March 3, 2009
"Common Existence" is a trip through all the years that Thursday has been a band. From the rough around the edges "Waiting" to the breakthrough "Full Collapse" to the amazing "War All The Time" to the artsy/experimental "A City By The Light Divided" and now to the future of Thursday "Common Existence".

I have been a fan for 7 years so far and Thursday have been a huge part of my life. Their lyrics inspired me and their music made me move. At a time when I was bouncing from genre to genre not knowing my fit in life and trying to be a Hot Topic kid I found the passion and energy of Thursday. "Common Existence" really puts me back into that time. When I could hear the urgency in Geoff's voice. Song's like "Beyond the Visible Spectrum" "Resuscitation of a Dead Man" and "Friends in the Armed Forces" are stand out's and really show how much the band have progressed.

The lyrics are usual Geoff Rickly and the vocals are a bit better then "A City". They have been pushing his vocals back into the mix for quite some time. I don't like the effects they add to his vocals though. My biggest gripe on this one. The atmosphere though is perfect and really gives the CD more power.

This CD continues to grow on me every listen. I find something new every time and I can't stop listening. I'm happy with this release and hope they keep touring so I can see them live again. Nothing beats a Thursday show!
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on July 27, 2009
I have been listening to this CD non-stop since I got it a few weeks ago. I think I'll be listening for quite a few more. I honestly like every song on here. Of course, I like some more than others. But all, IMO, are good. No filler for me. My favorties would be "Resusciation of a Dead Man", "Beyond the Visible Spectrum", "Time's Arrow", and "Love has led us Astry". But I don't skip any of them. True, I'm a Thursday fan and like all of their CD's (yes, even CBTLD. I don't understand why people hate on this one.

So if you like Thursday, don't even think about it--just get it. And if you don't have Kill the House Lights, get that too. Not only are there some good songs on it (and some good live versions too) but the DVD documentary is worth it just for that. Just make sure you get the version with the DVD; there is a version that is just the audio CD.
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on June 25, 2009
i just picked up this cd recently cause i was craving to listen to war all the time or full collapse, but i couldn't find either album cause i hadnt listened to either in a while. i went to the store to buy one or the other and only found this new release by the band. i had heard good and bad things about "a city by light divided" so i wasnt sure what to expect. i was extremely satisfied in my purchase. this cd is heavy and intense just like i expected except trippier and darker... definitely better than "a city by light divided" (which i also picked up). i think the last track is one of the best thursday jams i've ever heard. smoke some weed and listen to this cd haha.
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on March 6, 2009
Like most bands, Thursday emerged along with a medley of other "emo/hardcore/whatever" bands.

Many of those bands are gone, or irrelevant or changed their sound to "move more units".

But Thursday, with Common Existence is:

Still intense (if not more than ever).

Still a dynamic sound.

Still emotional (literally, not some Spin magazine lingo)

Thursday is still Thursday and that pleases me.
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on August 26, 2009
Alright, so this CD isn't TERRIBLE, but im not sure just how much i'm going to be into it. i really liked War All The Time, and, Full Collapse, but Common Existence just doesn't make me feel like i felt when i heard those albums. it's fine, i don't hate it, but it doesn't feel like the Thursday i fell in live with.
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on February 2, 2010
I'll make this short and simple. This is average by Thursday. I feel like their best days are behind them. They released one perfect album, which was War All The Time. This one doesn't come close to Full Colapse. Although I think it's a little better than A City By The Light Divided, that's not saying much. The passion and emotion is mostly gone. The guitars are mostly forgettable. Bass is quite good though. I love Geoff, but even here he's not on top. His voice goes up to this certain octave or whatever that just doesn't sound good. I'm not talking about the cracking of his voice, you know what I mean when you hear it. There is really only a few good songs on here worthy of a Thursday release, the rest is b-side material. The last two tracks in my opinion are terrible and forgettable. Tracks 3, 8, and 9 are good, the rest are just okay, with a few good spots here and there. After WATT I am not a fan of their production either, I think it's terrible. I can only listen to this if I'm in the right mood and that's not a good thing. With WATT I can listen to that whenever all day long and not get tired of it. With this I'm lucky if I get through the whole thing without turning it off. Good bands lose their edge, no suprise here.
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