Abysmal Thoughts
The Drums - Abysmal Thoughts
Critic Score
Based on 15 reviews
2017 Ratings: #335 / 668
User Score
Based on 70 ratings
2017 Ratings: #237
Your Review


A.V. Club
The new sounds heighten the bittersweet flavor, as Pierce opens up about feeling lonely, stupid, betrayed, empty, and at times, hopeful. If his life hasn’t exactly gotten easier, his music has never been better.
God Is in the TV
The Drums perfectly captures the feeling of displacement when your love and commitment just aren’t enough. It is difficult not to be charmed.
Northern Transmissions
Moving from inconsistent to sublime and headstrong, The Drums have finally hit a powerful plateau in their writing, one that they hopefully stay on and climb from soon.

Don’t let the title fool you. Abysmal Thoughts is a fun, lovely record, radiating sunshine in every melody and shadows in the lyrics. It’s whole and complex and captivating, a treasure chest of an album in which you’ll find something different and unique hiding within each listen.

Similar to Dave Longstreth’s Dirty Projectors solo record from earlier this year, ‘Abysmal Thoughts’ bears a strong connection to The Drums’ past while acknowledging that there’s simply no going back.
Pierce has tapped into something here, and he’s made a triumphant bummer of a record.

"Abysmal Thoughts"' breezy music and direct words are an arresting mix, and as Pierce stakes his claim as a 21st century master of melodrama, he delivers the purest version of his music yet.


In drawing inspiration from cult bands, the Drums are starting to make records for an audience that is looking for something pretty specific—that particular balance of darkness and light, of guitar effects and tight songwriting. On “Abysmal Thoughts, they do it exceptionally well.

Loud and Quiet
What is surprising is the way that the upbeat clean guitars – still typical of this beach band – and the nonchalant delivery, which is extra Morrissey-like on ‘Mirror’, make life’s hard times seem almost bearable.
Drowned in Sound
Pierce and company might never release anything as tight and high caliber as their debut album, but they are heading in a new direction while still remaining staunch pioneers of the heavy synths and reverb style that warranted them attention in the first place.
The Line of Best Fit

Abysmal Thoughts might not contain anything dramatically different but it’s the sound of The Drums experiencing confidence with their current positioning in 2017.


This record is so unequivocally The Drums; a subtle update on the formulaic template that made them a success back in 2010.

The Skinny
The overall charm is undeniable, even if it does feel very familiar.
Under The Radar
The experiments don't come off, while the pop style disappears under endless repetition. That isn't to say it's not lovely and engaging for while-it is-but too much of a good thing is still too much.

The Drums have long been melancholic, but their music used to be fun; Abysmal Thoughts is just a drag.

Nov 14, 2017
Although this album was mainly based off unfortunate events, The Drums has crafted a well-put-together collection of stories: granted, not all of them happy, but this will make for a perfect summer album nonetheless.
Aug 15, 2017
Sensitive letters. Fun rhythm. Great melodies with little production.
Jun 20, 2017

Mirror (7.5)
I'll Fight for Your Life (7.7)
Blood Under My Belt (8.0)
Heart Basel (6.7)
Shoot the Sun Down (8.0)
Head of the Horse (6.4)
Under the Ice (7.7)
Are U Fucked (7.2)
Your Tenderness (6.5)
Rich Kids (6.8)
If All We Share (Means Nothing) (7.5)
Abysmal Thoughts (6.9)
Jun 16, 2017
Mirror - 80/100
I'll Fight for Your Life - 90/100
Blood Under My Belt - 70/100
Heart Basel - 75/100
Shoot the Sun Down - 70/100
Head of the Horse - 65/100
Under the Ice - 75/100
Are U Fucked - 65/100
Your Tenderness - 70/100
Rich Kids - 65/100
If All We Share (Means Nothing) 80/100
Abysmal Thoughts - 75/100

Average Rating: 73

Overall Opinion: The good tracks are great..but some of the writing is just really terrible. Lyrics killed the rating of this one for me.
Purchasing Abysmal Thoughts from Amazon helps support Album of the Year.
Track List
  1. Mirror
  2. I'll Fight for Your Life
  3. Blood Under My Belt
  4. Heart Basel
  5. Shoot the Sun Down
  6. Head of the Horse
  7. Under the Ice
  8. Are U Fucked
  9. Your Tenderness
  10. Rich Kids
  11. If All We Share (Means Nothing)
  12. Abysmal Thoughts

Added on: March 1, 2017