!!!, "THR!!!LER"
!!!, "THR!!!LER" (Courtesy)
THR!!!LER is not an homage to or cover of Michael Jackson's record -- just a delightful and appropriate title for !!!'s fifth album.

The thrills within are funky, sexy and a little bit punk. The first notes are a guitar groove that could be coming to us from hot and sticky club in the ‘70s. Over the low key strut of “Even When The Water's Cold,” Nic Offer's David Byrne-ish voice sings, “Do you believe in love? / Then save all the bullshit questions / Sometimes it's just how the light hits their eyes.”

It's a feeling !!! (said “chk chk chk”) have always been adept at capturing. One moment, Offer is singing "Friends told her she was better off at the bottom of a river than in a bed with him," while “Californiyeah” is simply driven by deep-pitched oh yeahs and a refrain of ooo's and “ain't that right?” It's something between meaningful and “whatever, lets dance.”

And you will want to dance. THR!!!LER packs an energy that had died down a bit on the band's last album. While still indulging a more low key side, teasing out instrumental rhythms on tracks like “Careful,” they take a few turns for the heavy, loud and aggressive on songs like “Station (Meet Me At The).” “One Girl/One Boy” is especially funky, “Get That Rhythm Right” features a delightfully dirty sax, and “Slyde,” the first single pops for its infectious and coy female vocals.

The never ending dance grooves can get as tiring as long night on the dance floor, even with just nine songs. It's an album best enjoyed in small doses, lest a bass line wiggle into your brain and pulse there all day. (But maybe that's what you want?)

!!! would probably like for you to have to think about the music a little, but it's just so much easier to shut down and dance.