The Alchemy Index, Vol. III & IV: Air and Earth Image
Metascore
76

Generally favorable reviews - based on 5 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.1

Universal acclaim- based on 28 Ratings

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  • Summary: The second half of a planned four-EP set for the California-based rockers.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 5
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 5
  3. Negative: 0 out of 5
  1. This second installment is immaculate, an artful, emotional tour de force that underlines their "American rock's Radiohead" status. [May 2008, p.130]
  2. Air is a masterpiece of production and gives the best few tracks from the entire collection. Earth is a cool-down lap after the more developmental and progressive preceding discs, showing a Thrice that is willing to trade in all that has made them great during their niche period (1999-2004) in favor of pursuing a less challenging but equally viable sound
  3. The first disc is more guitar-centric, whereas the second part relies more on keyboards. But no matter the style, all of these songs hold together well.
  4. Alone, Air and Earth are the weakest of the EPs, but taken as a whole, Thrice have managed to convert an ultra-abstract concept into a cohesive and innovative collection. [May 2008, p.143]
  5. For The Alchemy Index Vols. III & IV: Air & Earth, the material is appropriately lofty to represent the former element but surprisingly sparse for the latter.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 10
  2. Negative: 0 out of 10
  1. Dec 5, 2011
    10
    One of the best albums ever made; The air index feels just like it should, easy to the ears, light, smooth. But the album glows in the earthOne of the best albums ever made; The air index feels just like it should, easy to the ears, light, smooth. But the album glows in the earth index; It feels downright gritty and dirty but manages to sound plain beautiful, just like a diamond in the rough. This album captures the sound of the elements and my heart as a music lover. Collapse
  2. IsaacA.e
    May 2, 2008
    10
    Absolute genius - best rock album of the year to date.
  3. AndyB
    May 2, 2008
    10
    This is a perfect conclusion to an incredibly ambitious concept album. Thrice always manages to pour their hearts into every song in a way This is a perfect conclusion to an incredibly ambitious concept album. Thrice always manages to pour their hearts into every song in a way that is simply lost in this age of dumbed-down corporate "rock" or "punk" albums. Thrice has traded in the hard hitting bass notes of Artist in the Ambulance and Vheissu for a softer, yet no less complex, cohesive collection laced with subtleties and supported by a mature understanding of songwriting, music theory and literature. I have to highlight two aspects for their outstanding quality. First, the drums really do a great job of fitting their space perfectly. Riley manages to accent the vocals and guitar, keep an intricate and complex beat and push the songs forward, all the while not stealing the spotlight from Dustin's incredible vocals (you can see this really well in Broken Lungs). This leads me to the other outstanding instrument, the vocals. Dustin has a unique and powerful voice that can intimate the most complex and varied emotions while maintaining his signature raw and strained sound that helped make Thrice famous in the first place. The lyrics are beautiful, musical poetry that have countless layers of significance. The subjects are relatable and uplifting while challenging the listener and his most personal beliefs (consider, for example, Moving Mountains which takes I Corinthians 13, one of the most unique and revolutionary passages in the New Testament and forms it into a heart-wrenching reflection on the state of the soul). If this seems over the top in length or enthusiasm it is only because of how thankful I am to Thrice as a band for giving me yet another reason to believe that music can change lives. This review may not be worth much but it is my way of thanking a band that has affected me in so many great ways. Expand
  4. MattM
    May 2, 2008
    9
    A near-masterpiece for Thrice. Though it fails to reach the beauty and balance of Vheissu, Dustin Kensrue and his bandmates have definitely A near-masterpiece for Thrice. Though it fails to reach the beauty and balance of Vheissu, Dustin Kensrue and his bandmates have definitely made an impressive accomplishment in the final two discs to their Alchemy Index anthology. The Air disc is quite haunting with the tragic tale of "Daedalus", or the more upbeat "Sky Is Falling". Earth, is more raw and has a homegrown log cabin sound to it. "Moving Mountains" and "Come All You Weary", for example, are truly unforgettable. A must-own for anyone with a diverse taste in music. Expand
  5. TobiasM.
    May 3, 2008
    9
    There is something subtle in here... There is, in fact, a feel to the entire collection. Thrice is having fun and we are lucky enough to There is something subtle in here... There is, in fact, a feel to the entire collection. Thrice is having fun and we are lucky enough to enjoy the result. Expand
  6. j30
    Sep 28, 2011
    6
    Maybe a little too ambitious and all over the place. I respect what they're trying to do, but as a first time listener it's really hard to getMaybe a little too ambitious and all over the place. I respect what they're trying to do, but as a first time listener it's really hard to get into. I look forward to what they release next. Expand
  7. MattK.
    May 20, 2008
    5
    After one listen through each disc, I couldn't take much more. The first disc was painfully boring. The second was much better, but After one listen through each disc, I couldn't take much more. The first disc was painfully boring. The second was much better, but still nothing that I would consider great. Maybe this kind of thing isn't my cup of tea. Maybe I'm being way too harsh. Maybe I just need to give the album a few more spins. All I know is that I can't possibly conceive how this is a crowning achievement or a masterpiece. Just because there's an interesting idea behind something doesn't mean it automatically pans out, and I feel that a lot of people are just handing it to Thrice. Expand

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