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by Linda Spielman

[editors note: this review was originally slated for Linda's Quick Hits review series (thus the short length), but since she gave it such a high rating it was placed here to give it more of a spotlight. We've included the band's official bio so that you can get to know more about them]. 

Thornley - Come Again 
Label: Roadrunner Records/
Falling To Pieces
Come Again
So Far So Good
Going Rate, The (My Fix)
Keep A Good Man Down
Easy Comes
Bright Side
Found Another Way
All Comes Out In The Wash
Lies That I Believe, The
Listen to samples and Purchase this CD online


This debut album is a solid effort both musically and production wise for Thornley. The Roadrunner label release has packaged a great debut for the group.

The quartet effortlessly combines catchy lyrics with equally solid rock instrumental. Sure you could compare them to Puddle of Mudd or Nickelback only because the listener may need some sort of musical reference, being Thornley is a new band on the scene. However, quite frankly they can hold their own when it comes to carving out a musical niche. We can compare them to their peers, but their style of writing in particular stands out from others. 

From listening to the CD, I noticed a lyrical fluidity combined with the backing of solid rock chords that I haven’t heard in a very long time from a band. I was easily caught up in images and feelings of the music from the first listen. 

This CD is good listen. The balance of tracks makes it also an effortless listen. Future predictions for Thornley...probably will emerge on the scene in the future with an unforeseen bang like that of Switchfoot.

Official Bio

"Once you start writing a song, just get out of the way and let it write itself," says singer and guitarist, Ian Thornley. "That's the only way to do it."

By "getting out of the way," what Thornley means is not cluttering every song with unnecessary flash and flourishes, so that what comes through most clearly is the melody - something simple, direct and deeply emotional.

"On this record, melody is king."

But the songwriter makes sure King Melody is kept company by such courtiers as heavy guitar riffs, ass-kicking drums and emotionally intense vocals on his upcoming opus, entitled Come Again. "It's what rock music should sound like - simple and to the point, but of a really high caliber," says drummer Sekou Lumumba. "When we play for other people, seeing that response - just seeing them with their mouths open - feels so good. I can't wait for people to hear this record."

For Thornley, this new project is the culmination of more than a decade's worth of playing and writing. After moving to Boston to study guitar in the early '90s, the young Canadian began jamming with a group of American musicians who eventually coalesced into the band Big Wreck. "I became the singer by default," he says, chuckling. "I was writing the stuff, and couldn't find anyone to sing it whose voice I could stand listening to." Big Wreck recorded two albums for Atlantic Records, and experienced widespread success with the 1998 track "The Oaf (My Luck Is Wasted)." But as much as Thornley enjoyed the instrumental complexities Big Wreck's songs afforded him, over time he found himself drawn to a more direct mode of expression.

"With Big Wreck, we did a lot of experimenting, taking it outside and bringing it back in," he says. "With this band, it's just song, song, song. I just want to stack the record with as many great songs as I can."

He adds, "A lot of it has heavy parts - and I mean heavy. But it's all in the context of a song, a sweet melody. To me, that's the most important thing." The range of material is impressive, stretching from the can't-get-it-out-of-your-head nature of the first single, "So Far So Good," to the heavy riffs of "Falling To Pieces," to the slow and beautiful "Lies That I Believe," "a real epic rocker," in Thornley's words. The solid musicianship and undeniable hooks throughout the material make each track an 'epic rocker' in its own right. 

As for the lyrics, Thornley draws heavily on his personal life, although only a few are, in his words, gut-wrenchers - "you know, about feeling all the pressures of life, little things like that." He smiles mischeviously. "There's definitely a singer/songwriter vibe going on, except I am screaming it at you. Some of it is screaming because I've got to get it out, and others because I just like to scream."

"There's a lot of screaming on the record..."

He began work on this new project as Big Wreck began winding down in 2002, and once signed to Roadrunner Records, set about turning his songwriting project into an actual band. He literally ran into Lumumba, a much-in-demand session drummer who was living at the studio Thornley was using. "I had a writing room, and Sekou was jamming in the next room," he says. "That's how we met," says Lumumba. "He had some stuff he needed some drums for, I put them down in a miraculously short time." Next onboard was the much sought after bassist, Ken "The Worm" Tizzard and the final puzzle piece fell in place with the arrival of Tavis Stanley. After working with several guitarists, Thornley decided on this aggressive young bar-band vet.

While Thornley is excited about the release of Come Again, he's even more stoked at the prospect of getting out on the road. "Bruce Springsteen was my first concert - my dad took me - and I was like, 'That's what I want to do,'" he says.

"I love getting onstage and blowing people's minds. Because when you have, like, 5,000 people who are all your buddies... That's a real buzz." 

Want more?

Visit the Official Website to learn more about Thornley

Listen to samples and Purchase this CD online

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What Do You Think?

They call you 
What do you think ?:

Fan Speak:

Posted by Brandon S:
Thornley is so far above the competition, it's amazing. This is because of Ian Thornley. People don't realise how brilliant he is. Because they probably haven't even heard of him. Big Wreck was his first band, they only lasted for two records due to poor band relations, that were apparently near unfixable. Of the two records, the sophomore release was the real masterpiece. And Thornley's album is something I'd class with both In Loving Memory of.... and The Pleasure and the Greed. Thornley isn't as complex, though. They are more of a straightforward rock band, with a straightforward rock record. I'm really looking forward to another release, seeing as how it's been a while since Come Again's release.

Posted by Bitter B:
IAN you need to relaese falling to pieces to the radio. I guarantee it will be number one in weeks!

Posted by Bailey:

Posted by Ian Thornley Admirer:
Yummy! Ian Is so freakin Hot it's unbelievable! I just Checked the google keywords, and I'd have to agree with Found Another Way.I wish There was such thing as 13 Going on 30, so I could Marry IAN THORNLEY! Once again(Come Again)Check out google. Go to K and listen to SO FAR SO GOOD. ENJOY! P.S Ian if you read this *I LOVE YOU*

Posted by marry me tavis stanley (thornley):
i think that both big wreck and thornley are the best bands ever and that Tavis stanley (the other guitarist from thornley) should marry me!!! :)

Posted by Found Another Way:
Wow! Thornley is so great!Seen them at the Elixir Bar in Kingston on 26th nov,2004 and they rocked!I have always loved Big Wreck,but Thornley just Rocks my sox off!Ian is extremely HOTT(check google for Ian Thornley, Thornley, Big Wreck,on images and you'll see what I mean)and can play a double neck gutair and even drums,(BW)Ken Tizzard the bassiet A.K.A Worm, has a mohawk(very Cool),Tavis Stanley can play guitar,and is sweet, Sekou Lumumba is a wicked drummer. Hope everyone can go out and buy COME AGAIN.If you really love Ian's work you might also pick up In Loving Memory Of... ,The Pleasure And The Greed, both by Big Wreck!

Posted by Marry Me Ian : Message boards,pictures,Bio, Media,News! Very Cool site! Album Come Again Best CD EVER!! Said by a 13 year old!

Posted by Colton:
Thornely sounds a lot tighter live than big wreck, and the drummer is insane. Best album of the year

Posted by DRAKMA MTY:

Posted by Diaz:
This album is the best i've heard in a long time. Quality tracks with great use of vocal and guitar voicings in a metal/acoustic setup. I wont review all the songs , but i can stress the fact that the tunes out on MTV arent the best ones in my opinion. I prefer 'Keep a good man down' and 'Beautiful'. Powerful songs , i found myself listening to all the songs from 1 to 12 and became a fan of their sound almost instantly. Thank you

Posted by Neny:
so far so good

Posted by Gerbus:
I don't know yet... I absolutely loved Big Wreck, but I can't help thinking that he made a jump he shouldn't have. Anyone know why Big Wreck split anyways? I guess I'll find out soon enough if Thornley is doin the do.

Posted by Motorhead636:
Thornley is a totally awesome band! I've never heard a better combo of lyrics and riffs, the whole cd rocks i can't say enough about it! When they come out with a second cd they are gonna be the nations #1 rock band! Rock on everyone who is a thornley fan!!

Posted by Teresa & Deanna:
We saw these guys in Springfield, MO with Finger Eleven. Thornley stole the entire show. You guys rock!

Posted by z:
THornley rules!!! i have there cd they should make the top 1 in the country for 5 years straight

Posted by scratch:
it's just really nice to hear a really rockin' band that has so much(and not too much) diversity and complexity in their music to prove that they are extremly talented...they easily have become my favorite band...twice as good as Big Wreck!!!

Posted by Erin:
I saw Thornley at the 3 Doors Down, Nickleback concert and fell in love with them. They're real and they rock hard. I bought their cd the day after the concert and I haven't stopped listening to it yet! Easily the best band I've listened to in a long time.

Posted by andy:
been a fan of Ian since in loving, it's nice his new band is getting some attention,a new B.W album would not be much different,Ian realised he had to trim it down a bit, but it works it doesn't sound minimalist just more punchier

Posted by Steve:
I just heard Thornley at the Nickleback concert in hershey. One word AMAZING. Defently glad they opened the show because i have an awesome band to listen too now. Rock on.

Posted by The Dawg:
Good, but I prefer the complexities behind Big Wreck. The albums from Big Wreck were better lyrics and hit just a little stronger.

Posted by Josi:
I love Thornley. I first heard them at a nickelback, 3 doors down, and puddle of mud concert and at the end of the night i got to meet Tavis Stanley and it was so cool. I cant wait til they come back again. ROCK ON THORNLEY!!

Posted by Michal PL:
i like Thornley !! (im from Poland:D its not popular here:D ) (my yahoo ID: michalbabel

Posted by Sam:
I absolutley love Thornley. I first heard them when I went to a Nickelback concert, now they are the only band I listen to any time i'm cruisin' in my car! Awesome lyrics and perfect melodies to go along.

Posted by Jamer:
Big Wreck was one of my favorite bands..Mainley because Ian has an awesome voice and hes lead guitar which is moree than I can do. Its good to see him back in action with the alot more heavier sound than what he nused to play .. (Hope we will hear some fully acoustic songs)

Posted by Erin:
I was thornley in London with nickelback. not only were they AMAZING Ian thornley was pretty hot! I love the cd too

Posted by jess:
i love thornley...i have only heard of so far, so good though..but, they seem awesome. if anyone has any other related bacnds that are also great....send an e-mail to ....and we can chat

Posted by becca:
i love thornley although i've only listened to one of their songs. i can't find anywhere where i can listen to their songs and my computers screwed over.....ugh.. i wanna bye their CD soon

Posted by daedae:
I don't know anything about Big Wreck...but I saw Thornley last night and they were freaking awesome. Planning on buying the CD soon.

Posted by Stinger:
I was a huge fan of Big Wrecks and now I'm a huge fan of Thornley. I say this because Ian Thornley is the man and he knows how to put on a kick ass show, like one he did just recently at the Drink in London ON. Keep up the wicked tunes guys, you sure did set the bar high!

Posted by Thornley fan:
I saw Thornley when they were on tour with Nickelback and Default. They sound great live and the album is awesome. I actually got a chance to meet Tavis in Kamloops and he is a really cool guy. I highly recommend the album, and catching a concert.

Posted by Damion:
When I lived in Toronto, I met Ian quite a few times (we frequented the same pubs), very nice guy, eager to talk about mucic, and very down to earth. I have yet to hear this cd, but I loved Big Wreck and the last conversation I remember having with Ian he had mentioned taking a heavier direction. Will be buying this next payday. :-)

Posted by mj:
They are so awesome!!! I really like their album....

Posted by Ian:
I feel very good about this album the song "beautiful" is my call to be there nexted single i think they have great shreds and awsome vocals.

Posted by Jeanine:
Their debut cd is absolutely amazing! Strong vocals, nice guitar riffs...honestly a great listen. I'd recommend it in a heartbeat!

Posted by muisc:
I loved Big Wreck. Thornley's new song, So Far So Good, is awesome too. I havent heard the record yet but I plan to now.




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