Thorn vs. Side

Nick Nowell, guitarist and front man for Thorn vs. Side, one of Dallas' freshest mixes of punk, pop and metal, is a literate and sometimes stern individual who wills this rather homely quartet beyond the generic blare that accompanies most things emo. The band's recently released Arson, produced by local studio wizard Michael Havens, is a dramatic collage of brains and brawn, a local release that carries the weight of something much bigger. Cuts such as "King Rhetoric" and "The Best Circumstances and the Worst Situations" mix in some clever pop hooks amongst the furious snarl, finding a fertile ground that doesn't smack of the petty pretensions and distressing debt to fashion that dog the likes of My Chemical Romance. Headlining this 10-band mosh-pit marathon, Thorn vs. Side earn their top spot with homages to Cheap Trick, Metallica and even Bad Brains that might soon fetch some notice outside of the city.

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