Review by: Hilary Hughes
It’s the beginning of October, and Indian Summer is over and done with in Boston: everyone has long since settled in since the semester started, the leaves are easing from vermillion to bleeding reds and yellows, and the biting briskness in the air is more welcome than waning. The best part of school being back in session is the reviving autumn wind and the extra dose of energy that blows into town with it… and the best way to make use of this seasonal enthusiasm is to head straight to the Middle East or a basement in Allston to dance to the downbeats and scratchy refrains screaming from the amps of the local, raw talent.
On nights like these, when you see your breath curling in front of you in the cold, high-energy bands who shove you into an embrace with their guitar rock are just the ticket, and Cambridge’s own Thick as Thieves fit the bill with their latest release, True Believers in the Long Walk Home.
What I love about True Believers… is its variation and the balance it achieves with a smaller song list. If I fall head over heels for a new album, I need songs on it that’ll work for my tired train ride in the morning as well as my backing track for when I’m dancing around in my underwear before a night out (in the privacy of my own apartment, of course). Like a meticulous, composed game of tug-of-war, the tracks of True Believers… alternate between power chord pushing numbers and sleepy, heavily medicated melodies. Let’s make an example of two of the album’s stronger selections, There Were Sparrows and Weak End with No End.
With Sparrows, Tyler Litwin’s vocals approach the steady twang of the steel-stringed acoustic guitar effortlessly and two meld in the mellow, while the fierce percussive presence and sonic distortion in Weak End with No End leave the listener empowered and eager to take on the night in every capacity.
In terms of temporal taste, Thick as Thieves has a sound that suits a time in transition, be it seasonal or a little more difficult to define. True Believers in the Long Walk Home is a fulfilling listen that’ll soothe, stun and satiate you, and a band with this kind of might behind them may be just what you need to avoid a head-on collision with the impending doldrums of winter.