Nothing but Thieves Review

Ashley Slate

Design/Spotlight Editor

If you’re an Arctic Monkeys, Muse, Catfish and the Bottlemen, or Twin Atlantic fan searching for a fresh new sound, look no further. Your salvation comes in the form of Nothing but Thieves, a five-member alternative rock band from Essex, England. The band features bass player Philip Blake, drummer James Price, guitarist Joe Langridge-Brown, guitar and keyboard player Dominic Craik, and lead singer Conor Mason, whose smooth, haunting vocals are bound to make you fall in love.

Formed in 2012, Nothing but Thieves has already achieved considerable success, with their first single, “Itch,” an eerie, passionate, drum-heavy track that took over British radio waves and topped UK charts. The band has also performed alongside/opened for several high-profile bands, including AWOLNATION, Twin Atlantic, Arcade Fire, and Muse. Their newly released self-titled debut album, Nothing but Thieves, has recently become available in the US, and is bound to work its way up US charts as well. Here are some of the most notable tracks from Nothing but Thieves:

“Excuse Me” – Started off with a dark, almost sinister sound, “Excuse Me” is the perfect opening track, as it immediately pulls you into the haunting, melodic experience of the entire album. That’s not to say that the song is slow/boring, however. After about a minute of hushed lyrics, the song immediately launches into an enthusiastic, awakening chorus. The energy is contagious, and sure to draw you into both Conor Mason’s voice (which I may already mentioned, is amazing), and the rest of the album.

“Ban All the Music” – Despite its somewhat ironic title, “Ban All the Music,” is a fantastic song, and definitely one of the album’s most impressive. A catchy guitar riff is a constant underlying presence throughout the track, and it’s momentum only increases throughout. Definitely a must if you need a major pick-me-up in your day.

“Graveyard Whistling” – This is definitely the most chilling song off the album. Lacking the sudden bursts of energy that can be found on most of the other songs, “Graveyard Whistling,” is what you might assume it to be from the name: cold, and eerie. Conor Mason’s voice barely rises above a hushed whisper throughout the track, which only amplifies the haunted feeling.

“Trip Switch” – One of the band’s most popular tracks, “Trip Switch”, does not disappoint. It’s melodic, even provocative sound is easy to immerse yourself in, and once again, Conor Mason’s dark, sensory vocals are perfection. “Trip Switch” is how I personally discovered the band, and I would even claim that this is arguably the best song off the album.

“Hostage” – Already starting off with a considerable amount of energy, “Hostage” only gains momentum as it progresses. This song is slightly more pop-infused, making for a catchy, movable tune. Also, a word of caution to my headphone-wearers: keep your volume low on this one, as this is probably the album’s loudest song.

“Lover, Please Stay” – A sharp contrast to the album’s bubbling energy (apart from Graveyard Whistling, of course), “Lover Please Stay” introduces a softer, more vulnerable side of Conor Mason’s vocals, though it’s not unwelcome. The simple, underlying melody puts Mason’s voice front and center, and his raw emotion is both alluring and thought inducing.

I could probably go on and on about this album (there are 16 tracks, after all), but for both our sakes, I’ll end here. If you want to catch Nothing but Thieves live, they’ll be performing at this year’s Edgefest (along with Bastille, The 1975, Cage the Elephant, CHVRCHES, X Ambassadors, and so much more) on April 30th, located at Toyota Stadium in Frisco. Tickets can be purchased here:

In the meantime, happy listening!