The Thermals: You make it cool to be reckless. When I listen to you, I want to drink so much I pass out. Nobody has ever made getting high sound so damn fun. And your attitude is just plain badass. You know why? You aren’t trying to be all “hello, we are the representation of punk rock and we are badass kids.” You’re just, “hey dudes, let’s be young and drunk and stupid, and let’s have a hell of a time in the process.”
“We were high, we were alive, we were sick.” Some of my favorite dumb lyrics ever. It reminds me of all the kids at ACRN that I used to look up to. I never really could be that reckless or cool, but I know for a fact that you were. You would spend your last $10 on PBR, even if the only other thing in your fridge was ketchup. I SAW THAT HAPPEN, people. I felt cool by association. I was eating fresh fruit, and these kids were sweet enough to survive on alcoholism!
I never quite got the whole alcoholism thing down.
Beside the whole image/we don’t give a shit attitude thing, The Thermals make good music. (Wouldn’t it be funny if I didn’t elaborate and just called the music, “good”?) There are excellent punk riffs, half-yelled/half-sung lyrics, and really clever, basic chord progressions that sound simple enough for a drunken asshole to play. The feedback on “When We Were Alive” is so extreme at :52 that I used to think I was about to get hit by a car. It’s at the weirdest frequency. Did you know this when you recorded it?
“Yeah we were fools. But I still had my friends.” Damn straight.
And there’s the whole thing about how their albums are “concept albums.” I never really saw them for their depth and “concept usage,” but apparently this is the case as well.
All I know is that I love it to death, and I want to be young forever.