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Thermal and a Quarter Put Their Wheels In Motion

Bengaluru’s veteran rockers pay homage to their hometown on fifth album

Bobin James Oct 30, 2012
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[easyreview cat1title=”3 Wheels 9 Lives” cat1rating=”4″]

It takes balls. It takes massive balls to put out a double CD with 20+ songs as an album. While many bands have tried it, more often than not, they’ve fallen flat on their faces ”“ it simply is a task of superhuman proportions to be able to ensure there are no weak ones.

So it was with a sense of trepidation that I started listening to the fifth album from Thermal and a Quarter, 3 Wheels 9 Lives, a collection of songs loosely inspired by their hometown of Bengaluru. And now, having given the three-CD album more than a few listens, I can report that TAAQ have achieved the superhuman task. Of the 20 new songs on this record, there really is none that will make you hit the skip button. What it might take, though, is a few listens for a lot of this entire set of TAAQ’s trademark jazz-tinged, blues-infused rock to grow on you.

There are, of course, songs like album opener “Surrender”, the Coltrane-inspired “In the Middle” and a live-set highlight, “Chameleon”, that will instantly grab you with their chugging rhythms and massive grooves. But watch out for acoustic ditties like “Terrible Trouble” and “Something You Said” too. And then there is the bonus 3rd disc of singles they have released in the past couple of years. You might have heard most of them ”“ “Simply Be”, “Mighty Strange”, “Grab Me” ”“ but it helps having them all in one place. Give 3 Wheels 9 Lives a fair listen and I will personally give you your money back if you don’t think this is the best album TAAQ have put out.  

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Key tracks: “Surrender”, “Terrible Trouble”, “Simply Be”

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