The past few years have seen a groundswell of nostalgic sentiment towards emo music as late twenty-somethings to those in their mid-thirties yearn for the bands that were the soundtrack to their coming of age. This emo revival, which had really taken off before the pandemic with the launch of regional emo nights and many well-loved acts coming back from hiatus continues in 2022, with notable festival When We Were Young and an “Emo’s Not Dead” cruise announced for later this year, and in the case of legendary post-hardcore acts Thursday and Cursive, a massive run across the US.
We were fortunate to catch one of the last dates on the first leg of the tour, as the bands came to play at Aura in Portland, Maine along with opening acts The Appleseed Cast and Nate Bergman on January 27, 2022. After solo opening sets from Bergman and The Appleseed Cast’s Chris Crisci, who was the only member of the band out on the tour due to positive Covid tests amongst his bandmates, Nebraska-based act Cursive took to the stage for an energizing set that swiftly got the crowd moving and singing along. Frontman Tim Kasher’s enthusiasm was contagious as the band started their set off with “The Casualty” and “Mothership, Mothership, Do You Read Me?”
It was a night of hits, as their frenetic set of string and horn-infused music continued with “Dorothy at Forty.”
Few bands this far into their career can bring this level of intensity. At one point Kasher joked that this night’s set was important to them as it was the first time in their 27 years as a band that they’d ever played in Maine, saying, “We need to play so well that you invite us back!” It’s safe to say that they’ll be welcomed back any time they want to return.
Cursive was a hard act to follow and Thursday was actually down a member on this night, with guitarist Norman Brannon out due to yet another positive Covid test result. However, they were more than up for the challenge, with frontman Geoff Rickly joking that the crowd was in for a show akin to many of the basement gigs the band started their career off with. Thursday ended up having a few members of the other bands with them rotate in to cover for Brannon on some songs, and played as a 4-piece on the others. If there were any elements missing, they were overshadowed by the stage presence and musicianship of Rickly and his bandmates.
Warmed up by the prior set, the audience belted out the words along with the band as Thursday sped through an incredible set that featured hits like “Cross Out the Eyes,” “For the Workforce, Drowning,” and “Signals Over the Air.”
The loudest of the sing-alongs this night was set-closer and fan-favorite, “Understanding in a Car Crash,” which saw the first mosh pit of the night open up! The band had been planning to come back for a 4-song encore, but halfway through a cover of Joy Division’s “Love Will Tear Us Apart,” the microphones gave out! After a bit of troubleshooting that didn’t seem to resolve anything, Rickly took up a guitar and stepped out onto a PA speaker to play “Time’s Arrow” to a silent crowd without the aid of a microphone. It was a really cool moment—despite the technical issues—for it netted the fans an extra encore song! A quick reboot and the sound was working again. Thursday closed the night out with “War All The Time.”
If you missed out on seeing Thursday and Cursive, you can still catch the second leg of this run, which started in Denver on February 5th, the remaining dates are below! You can also catch Thursday this fall on any of the three dates of the When We Were Young Festival!
Remaining Tour Dates:
02/09 Seattle, WA – the Crocodile
02/10 Spokane, WA – Knitting factory
02/11 Portland, OR – Roseland
02/12 Sacramento, CA – Ace Of Spades
02/14 San Francisco, CA – August Hall
02/15 Pomona, CA – The Glass house
02/17 Phoenix, AZ – The Nile Theatre
02/18 Los Angeles, CA – The Regent Theatre
02/19 San Diego, CA – Brick By Brick