Thursday is a post-hardcore band from New Brunswick, New Jersey. The band has released four full-length albums.
Thursday was formed in 1997 by vocalist Geoff Rickly, guitarist Tom Keeley, guitarist Bill Henderson, bassist Tim Payne, and drummer Tucker Rule. Keeley recounts foundation of the band:
“ Tucker and I used to get together on weekends when we didn't have school and just kind of kick around little two minute hardcore songs on our really crappy equipment. We'd hang out in his attic, and just try really hard to fool ourselves into thinking we were good. I guess we did that for like four months and actually started learning how to play our instruments. Right around that time I met Geoff at an Ink and Dagger show, and asked him if he wanted to come to the "practices" and work on lyrics. Tim, I met in a figure drawing class. For a while my other friend from high school, Bill played with us...we recorded Waiting with him. After a while he realized that he was not going to be able to commit to touring because of school, and through a mutual friend of all of ours we met Steve. ”
The band began playing basement shows in New Brunswick and surrounding New Jersey and New York areas. The band played their first official show on December 31, 1998 in Rickly's basement alongside Midtown, Saves the Day and Poison the Well.
They recorded demos to hand out at shows, and in the summer of 1999, they teamed up with MP3.com for their first official release, the 1999 Summer Tour EP, which featured demos of songs that would be soon be found on their debut album, Waiting, released January 18, 2000, on northern New Jersey-based Eyeball Records without any singles nor radio or television support.
Hesitant to join a larger label, but with full support from Eyeball Records, Thursday signed to Chicago-based label Victory Records and released Full Collapse on April 10, 2001, without much radio or television support, but in a way that the band had not originally intended. Victory Records originally wanted to remove the lyrics from the packaging against the bands wishes in order to cut costs, but the released LP has all lyrics and minimal artwork, a rare thing for the band.
Thursday toured in support of the album, including a tour with Saves the Day that caught the attention of Victory Records. Victory Records filmed a music video for "Understanding in a Car Crash" consisting of live footage of the band and marketed the song as the band's first single, without the bands authorization. The video for this song received heavy airplay on both MTV2 and what was then known as Muchmusic. The song gained the band a large underground following. A second single, "Cross Out The Eyes", would follow, but it received much less attention.
Thursday was routinely upset at Victory Records over the use of the band's image and promotion, including the label's attempts to distribute Thursday-themed whoopie cushions. The band's newfound popularity and disgust with the label led to internal problems that bred the Five Stories Falling EP, a release the band used to fulfill contractual obligations with Victory Records. At live shows, the band routinely told fans not to purchase the EP, but instead to download "Jet Black New Year", the one new song found on the EP amidst live performances of four Full Collapse songs and the first song created since Full Collapse, a time during which the band almost broke up. "Jet Black New Year", the only studio track on Five Stories Falling, showed a darker side of the band that was only hinted at on Full Collapse.
War All the Time
Having parted ways with Victory Records and joining Island Records, Thursday issued their major label debut, the critically acclaimed War All the Time on September 16, 2003. The entire writing and recording process took only six months; the band has claimed they almost forced themselves into a contained sound on the album. The album's title, coupled with it being released approximately two years after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, led many critics to believe it was a political album; however, Rickly has denied this on many accounts, instead claiming that he is speaking about love being a war. War All the Time features Andrew Everding on keyboards, though he would not become an official member of the band until December 26, 2003, when he was officially welcomed into the band at the band's Christmas holiday shows held at Starland Ballroom in Sayreville, New Jersey.
War All the Time spawned two singles, "Signals Over the Air" and "War All the Time", though the latter received considerably less attention due to MTV banning the video for controversial material involving a fake news feed that appeared to be real and teenagers being weapon targets.
Thursday toured extensively to support War All the Time through many dates with acts such as AFI, Thrice, and Coheed and Cambria. On these tours, Thursday performed many in-store acoustic sessions at various Tower Records stores and other record stores. The band also recorded a live acoustic session for Y100 Sonic Sessions, a radio program on the now defunct Philadelphia-based radio station, Y100. The live acoustic version of single "Signals Over The Air" was used on Y100 Sonic Sessions Volume 8.
Following War All the Time, the band released two EPs. The first was Live From The SoHo & Santa Monica Stores Split EP and sold exclusively on iTunes; the second was a promotion found in Revolver, Live In Detroit EP.
The band went on an indefinite hiatus in 2004. The band cited label pressure, extensive touring, and health problems as the source of their newly discovered fatigue. However, Thursday returned once again for a charitable cause to save New York City's CBGB, on August 25, 2005. This performance was streamed live through the CBGB's website.
A City by the Light Divided
In Fall 2005, five Thursday demo songs were stolen from My American Heart's tour manager's iPod. Rickly had recently collaborated with My American Heart for the track "We Are The Fabrication". The band issued a statement on their official website stating that they were disappointed the unfinished products leaked, but that they were glad that people take that much interest in their music. The band confirmed the title of one demo, "At This Velocity" and promised it would make their upcoming album. Three other songs ("The Other Side Of the Crash/Over and Out (Of Control)", "Telegraph Avenue Kiss", and "Autumn Leaves Revisited") would also make the album; the demo versions of these songs are quite different.
Thursday originally toyed with the idea of double album to follow up War All the Time, but scrapped that idea, reporting on their website that not even The Beatles could properly fill two discs with enough worthy material.
Dave Fridmann-produced A City by the Light Divided followed War All the Time and is Thursday's first full-length album not produced by Sal Villanueva. The title is influenced by a poem from Octavio Paz--Rickly combined two lines from one of his poems to create the title. The album was officially previewed on the band's MySpace on April 18, 2006, and officially released May 2 on Island Records in American and Hassle Records in the UK.
A City by the Light Divided was generally received well by critics, and spawned two singles, "Counting 5-4-3-2-1" and "At This Velocity", though the latter received considerably less attention.
Kill the House Lights
The band parted ways with Island Records in early 2007. A private show they performed on May 3, 2007 in New York City, allowed long-time friend "theRev" to propose to his fiancee on stage and they also held a performance on May 5, at The Bamboozle under the fake name Bearfort. They cancelled all tour plans until their fall tour with Circle Takes the Square and Portugal. The Man in support of Kill the House Lights, a DVD/CD retrospective. At their 2007 New Year's Eve show at the Starland Ballroom, the band announced that they will be writing and recording new material in 2008.
Untitled album with Envy
Thursday announced on April 2, 2008 via Myspace bulletin and official website, a new split album with Japanese post-hardcore band, Envy. The album is currently in the recording stages and it is set to be released on Temporary Residence Limited sometime around September/October of 2008.
“ We've decided to convert rumor into fact and lay it all out for all you good peoples. New Jersey's Thursday and Old Tokyo's Envy will come together to release a split LP+CD this fall, released by Temporary Residence Ltd. It will be a limited edition LP+CD set; there will be no separated CD or LP versions. Both formats will come in one package, and both will contain the same music. This means it may not be available in Best Buy, Wal-Mart, Circuit City, or most 'record' stores in the mall. But it will certainly be available at your local independently owned record store, while supplies last. We're not yet sure how limited it will be; maybe 10,000, maybe a billion (probably closer to the former, as we really don't have space for a billion LPs). In addition, there will be a deluxe, hand-printed edition that will be sold exclusively through our webstore. These will be screenprinted by hand, and will be limited colored vinyl editions. There is no specific release date set yet, but look for this around Sep/Oct. ”
Thursday uses the dove logo on their albums and merchandise. The dove is believed to have been conceived by Tom Keeley on a tour bus sometime before Full Collapse was recorded.
Lyrics from "Cross Out the Eyes" find the band referencing the dove:
“ We can rise on the wings of the dove
See blue skies getting caught in the trail of all this smoke We can rise like candles in the dark Yours always,"
As well as
“ "...And the mourning dove gets caught in the telephone wire." ”
It is unknown whether these lyrics were inspired by the dove art or if the dove was inspired by Rickly's lyrics. Since the dove's conception, however, it appears on every disc that Thursday has released in some form, though it is not mentioned lyrically aside from "Cross Out The Eyes". There is also a dove present in the "Cross Out The Eyes" video, which Darren Doane, in the commentary for XDOANEX, said was the hardest prop he's ever had to procure for a music video.
The band also has adopted a new logo--a red bullseye with a small "v" below it-- for A City by the Light Divided. This logo appeared on merchandise related to the album, and is seen faded in the background of the cover for Kill the House Lights.