The Thermals – Desperate Ground

May 26, 2013

This is now the sixth album from the lo-fi rockers The Thermals, who hail from Portland, Oregon. Many of our ears first pricked up to these chaps with The Body, The Blood, The Machine from 2006, and it’s arguable that since then all the albums have been fairly consistent, each boasting four or five corkers at least.


There is something admirable about a band who can push out six albums and still stick to their raw roots – and that is something instantly recognisable from the opening track Born To Kill, which doesn’t hesitate from diving in at the deep end. Crashing drums, thick fuzzy indie-mid and Hutch Harris squawking above all of that. This is one of the shortest albums in Thermals history, with only ten tracks that average just under three minutes each, which in a way concentrates the punchy loveliness of it.


My top tracks off of this album would have to be I Go Alone, which sits at track four and has a really nice main riff, The Sword By My Side [5], Faces Stay With Me [7] (which actually, thinking about it, has a riff very similar to the I Go Alone albeit a smidge chirpier), and The Howl of Winds [8]. But even those tracks not listed are decent enough. You really know what you’re getting from The Thermals. Prepare necks for boppage.