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Portland, Oregon, United States | SELF

Portland, Oregon, United States | SELF
Band Alternative Rock


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You’d expect a band whose discography features such titles as War Over the Great Plains to have a grandiose sense of scope, and Themes would not disappoint you in that assumption. The trio—which moved to Portland by way of Santa Rosa, then by way of Minneapolis—shows stylistic traces of friends and occasional collaborators Minus the Bear, but whereas MTB has taken slick post-rock in the direction of the dance floor, Themes has pulled the genre relentlessly toward the downtempo regions of the dirge. The Phantom, Themes’ third LP, offers eight mordant takes on that particular musical mode. After six years and three albums, it’s hard to argue that Themes hasn’t laid a respectable claim to these very specific sonic stomping grounds. -SHANE DANAHER
- Willamette Weekly, Portland, OR. 12-14-2011

The members of Themes understand what it is to convey emotion. Each and every track bleeds with personality and atmosphere, creating aural soundscapes that are both beautiful and bleak in their composition. Vocalists McIntosh and Crawford signature delivery styles play off each other well, a sorrowful combination that lives up to the band’s name. Their latest release The Phantom is as thematic as they come, lush and heavy in a way few artists these days can imitate. If you’re in the mood for something with a bit of weight to it, look no further than Themes.
- ABSOLUTE PUNK . NET 09-01-2011

Themes is a band that requires your attention. Though this hallowed musical synthesis between Kelsey Crawford (keys, vox) and Jacy McIntosh (guitar, vox) began in the Bay Area in 2005 and has since entertained multiple sojourns to Minneapolis, it seems the duo (joined by drummer Nick Dayka) has found a tidy home in our fair city, and graces us with their presence in between lengthy tours with nationally renowned acts. The self-described “fractured post rock” group’s most recent album, The Phantom, was produced by Carcrashlander’s Cory Gray and is nearly as daunting as their tendency for textual yelling; it’s unspeakably dark, but in its eight-song duration, it manages to clear the brush from those slovenly places in your head to make way for more lucid thoughts before it swallows you whole. -RAQUEL NASSER
- Portland Mercury 12-14-11


When: Fri., sept 17, 9 p.m. 2010
Price: $6
(Ella Street Social Club, 714 SW 20th Pl) Unless you cut your teeth in the Minneapolis DIY scene, chances are the name Jacy McIntosh means nothing to you. But for Twin Cities alums, and the faithful few that witnessed McIntosh front the jittery post-rock of End Transmission, the man is a bit of a legend. With guerilla tours, self-released records, and about a billion other side projects, McIntosh is a lifer. Themes is his latest and most-grounded venture, a duo created in Santa Rosa, refined in Minneapolis, and now finally settled here in Portland. Along with co-vocalist Kelsey Crawford, Themes create wildly inventive, if not delightfully skewed, ballads for the heavy hearted. Even better is their recent "The Soldier Trade" 7-inch, featuring a B-side remix with rhymes courtesy of backpacking emcee P.O.S., which might be the perfect blend of moody indie rock and fractured hiphop flow. EAC


When: Thu., Nov. 18, 9 p.m. 2010
Price: $6
Themes are a Portland band, but they weren't always. Nomads at heart, Jacy McIntosh and Kelsey Crawford called Minneapolis home before relocating here in 2008, making music that's fully flowered with dramatic swirls, buzzfire guitars, ghostly piano, and male/female vocals, resulting in a seductively homespun version of 21st-century American goth. NED LANNAMANN


"LOVEWEAPONS" ( full length LP due FEB 19th 2013 )


"THE PHANTOM " ( full length LP due JAN 18th 2011 )

" Soldier Trade w/ Booka B remix Feat P.O.S."
( 7" Oct 2008 )

"I Can't Make You Believe, It's Not Hopeless To Survive"
(7" May 2008)

"War Over The Great Plains" (full length, Oct. 2007)



[ Currently ] After several months of writing and recording their 5th, and said to be “Most Powerful” Studio Release, Produced/ Engineered by Brandon Eggleston ( tUnE-yArDs, Mountain Goats, Modest Mouse, Le Savy Fav & Swans ) at Cloud City Sound in Portland, OR and Mastered by Ephriam Nagler ( Cursive, The Velvet Teen, Deerhoof )at Dub Narcotic Studios, Olympia, WA.

THEMES debuted their new material live, supporting Electric Guest after the 2012 Sasquatch Music Festival. The band has been touring through fall of 2012 with performances in the U.S. including another in studio session with Daytrotter.

[Previously] In 2005 Jacy McIntosh and Kelsey Crawford began “THEMES” in Santa Rosa California. Being long time touring music veterans, the two artists joined forces to be the band they had both always wanted. With McIntosh and Crawford at the helm the band has been able to grow and evolve, with an ever changing cast of close friends, sculpting the Music of THEMES into Lush Soundscapes and Fractured Post Rock Anthems.

In 2007 THEMES relocated to their previous Home town Minneapolis, MN, where they recorded and released their sophomore album “War Over The Great Plains”. The band spent the remainder of the year Touring the U.S.

In early 2008 The band returned to Minneapolis from a year of touring the U.S. to record two 7” records with Miniature Record Club ; “I can’t make you believe, It’s not hopeless to survive” and “The Soldier Trade / Soldier Trade Remix, (Feat Hip Hop wordsmith P.O.S and re-mix visionary Booka B). The Releases were followed with two more U.S. Tours. In fall of 2008 THEMES Relocated again, To Portland, OR and joined longtime Friends Minus The Bear for U.S. tour dates.

In the past, McIntosh and Crawford have shared stages with Artists such as The Velvet Teen, The New Trust, Portugal the Man, School of Seven Bells, Atmosphere, Fleet Foxes, Le Tigre, and BLACK FLAG, to round out an ever growing solid base of friends and fan throughout the United States and beyond.

In 2011 the band toured the US in support of “The Phantom”. The year held more performances in the US with bands such as : Tim Kasher (Cursive / The Good Life), The Velvet Teen, Minus The Bear, Tapes and Tapes, Everest, and The Lonely Forest. The band also recorded a Daytrotter session featuring a different version of songs from “The Phantom” album.

In OCT of 2011 THEMES was Invited to appear at a 3 day gathering in Big Sur, CA entitled Communion In The Redwoods, via members from the band Mumford And Sons and their collectively run London based Record label/ Promotions company Communion. THEMES appeared alongside a handful of artists MOJO magazine has called “A New Generation of Songwriter.”