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Personal Life

The Thermals

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iTunes Editors’ Notes

Hutch Harris sings with assurance and helms these tunes with the same authority as the solid whacks of the snare drum coming from Westin Glass. Portland, Oregon’s Thermals are one tight trio. Bassist Kathy Foster adds bass lines that surge forth and often chase the melody up the guitar neck. With Chris Walla producing, things stay taut. Each instrument punches with serious determination. “You Changed My Life” features verses that string along with the tension of early Elvis Costello while “Alone, a Fool” crashes through with a power-pop energy that’s immediately ingratiating. “I’m Gonna Change Your Life” grinds with a street-walkin’ swagger that chews up the scenery with a defiant glare. “I Don’t Believe You,” “Never Listen To Me” and “Power Lies” come blaring out with the sound of the city as Harris revels in the part of the fearless leader of a post-punk group. “Not Like Any Other Feeling” adds a buoyant snap. Album number five and the Thermals haven’t lost a step.

Customer Reviews

Never a bad record

They continued the theme of rocking a little less hard like they did on 'Now We Can See' with 'Personal Life'. But that doesn't mean it still isn't spectacular. The album still maintains the energy and catchiness of every album they have ever released. Every track is solid. My personal standout track is 'Power Lies'.

All the hooks, a little less bite

The Thermals have gotten less noisy and brash with each record, but singer/guitarist Hutch Harris has never lost the ability to write immediately hummable, catchy indie rock tunes. Personal Life is much more introspective and opts for heart-on-your-sleeve lyrics rather than the political and religious commentary of earlier stuff, but it doesn't come across as sappy. They aren't selling out, just exploring new territory. And I still count myself a huge fan.

What's wrong with Now We Can See?

I love that album, who doesn't?

Biography

Formed: May, 2002 in Portland, OR

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s, '10s

A Portland-based supergroup of sorts, the Thermals originally featured Kind of Like Spitting's Ben Barnett and the Operacycle's Jordan Hudson, plus Hutch Harris and Kathy Foster of the twee/folk-pop duo Hutch & Kathy and the All Girl Summer Fun Band. The group formed in early 2002 as a way for its members to play just for the fun of it, but their insistent melodies and punk-inspired urgency quickly won them a local following. Death Cab for Cutie's Ben Gibbard became one of the Thermals' first...
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Personal Life, The Thermals
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