Fall Out Boy is hardly the only one changing things up. Last week Geoff Rickly, who fronted screamo standout Thursday till the band went on indefinite hiatus at the end of 2011, dropped his second "mixtape" of solo recordings, Darker Matter, and it bears only a slight resemblance to his work in Thursday and agitprop hardcore group United Nations. It's a searing and strange antifolk EP that shows Rickly running wild with his experimental side; not only does the dude pull off making a wobbly blues burner ("Crushed Penny") and a trip-hop tune made with what sounds like a church organ that also name-checks a jazz trumpeter ("Somewhere, Listening to Chet Baker Without Me . . . "), but he puts those songs side by side and makes the transition from each unusual song work.
Darker Matter is easily one of the best name-your-price releases I've heard this year, and given Thursday's popularity I'm a little perplexed that more sites outside of the punk media circuit haven't given Rickly's music the kind of coverage he got after he was robbed at gunpoint earlier this month. I just hope some curious pop fans give a song such as the gorgeous and ambient " . . . but do you remember?" a chance, and maybe even reconsider what the word "emo" means today. Calling Darker Matter emo is a stretch, but Rickly and his work are so foundational to what the genre has become that it wouldn't surprise me if a new DIY emo group listens to this EP and decides to take its sound in a new direction.
*Well, with so many bands reuniting these days it wouldn't be surprising if My Chemical Romance reunites at some point in the next decade.