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Hutch Harris of The Thermals performs at the 2011 Sasquatch Music Festival.
Brittney Bush Bollay/KEXP
May 29, 2011 Speedball punk built around a sharp sense of pop craftsmanship, The Thermals' songs careen giddily from strength to strength.
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Alicia J. Rose
August 29, 2010 Personal Life, as the title suggests, finds The Thermals focusing mostly on the matter of relationships. The result is another gloriously glass-half-empty half-hour of fist-pumping anthems about the weaknesses that divide us. Hear the album in its entirety until its release on Sept. 7.
Just in time for the Olympics, The Thermals' "Canada" functions as a rapturous celebration of elsewhere.
courtesy of the artist
February 16, 2010 "Canada" transforms a collection of what seem like the thinnest ingredients into a rapturous celebration of elsewhere. The fact that the place Hutch Harris is singing about is largely identical to his current locale isn't important; the joy in his throat and the skip in The Thermals' step treat it as if it's one form of paradise or another.
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March 17, 2009 In "When We Were Alive," The Thermals' members sum up a generation's legacy of timidity and missed opportunities in less than two minutes. Rarely has a song said so much so efficiently, as frontman Hutch Harris spits out bravado ("You should have seen us in our prime") and regret ("We didn't try when we were alive") with the same red-faced ferocity.
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June 5, 2008 When driving long distances, the crushing exhaustion and faceless landscapes can fade from memory in a nanosecond when accompanied by the perfect piece of adrenaline-infused music. These five tracks serve that purpose beautifully, so be sure to put them on for those moments when the landmarks are starting to whiz by in a joyously indistinct blur.
December 25, 2006 Song of the Day editor Stephen Thompson listened to thousands of albums in 2006 before settling on these 10 frequently overlooked favorites.
December 20, 2006 Given the proliferation of year-end Top 10 lists, it seems natural that Shadow Classics — which gives shelter to under-appreciated music — would feature its own list of 2006 recordings likely to become Shadow Classics down the line. Don't let these gems go unnoticed.
September 20, 2006 Over a grungy guitar riff, singer Hutch Harris brings his anthemic howl roaring back again and again, but anthems aren't usually this nuanced. "Returning to the Fold" is one of the smartest, most honest depictions of religious anxiety in pop music, and it rocks to boot.
February 8, 2006 A Portland tribute to the late Elliott Smith; Remembering guitarist John Fahey; A cool compilation from Asthmatic Kitty; An intimate recording from Rosanne Cash and more.
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