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Thrice - Vheissu cover.jpg
Studio album by Thrice
Released October 17, 2005 (UK)
October 18, 2005 (US)
Recorded April - June 2005 at Bearsville Studios in Bearsville, New York
Length 49:20
Label Island
Producer Steve Osborne
Thrice chronology
If We Could Only See Us Now
(2005)If We Could Only See Us Now2005
Red Sky (EP)
(2006)Red Sky (EP)2006
Singles from Vheissu
  1. "Image of the Invisible"
    Released: September 27, 2005
  2. "Red Sky"
    Released: 2006

Vheissu (pronounced "vee-sue"[1]) is the fourth studio album by American rock band Thrice. Released on October 18, 2005 through Island Records, the album spawned one charting single, "Image of the Invisible", which peaked at No. 24 on Billboard's Mainstream Rock chart. The album has endured the test of time and is now commonly seen as Thrice's greatest album and one of the greatest post-hardcore albums ever made.[2][3]

Composition and recording[edit]

The album is characterized by many critics as being a rather experimental deviation from Thrice's post-hardcore roots, with the implementation of elements such as piano melodies ("For Miles"), electronica ("Red Sky"), folk Japanese music-box undertones ("Music Box", whose melody comes from the song Sakura Sakura) and chain gang chant choruses ("The Earth Will Shake"). UK producer Steve Osborne, whose past credits include many Brit-pop hits, was sought by Thrice to gain a new perspective on the songwriting process, enabling the band to expand their musical influences and produce a different album.

According to an interview with drummer Riley Breckenridge, the group recorded the album at Bearsville Studios, the same place he recorded drum tracks for 2003's Artist in the Ambulance. In describing reasons for returning to Bearsville, Breckenridge said, "It's so secluded and so cut off from everything ... and it was really cool to kinda separate ourselves from the rigors of being at home and the distractions of friends and families, and traffic and the L.A. and Orange County lifestyle."[4]

Title and artwork[edit]

The morse code at the beginning of "Image of the Invisible" spells out the album's title.

The album artwork was created by author Dave Eggers and artist Brian McMullen.[5] Eggers has said that he had not done freelance design in years, but after meeting the band and reading the lyrics he was happy to be involved in the project.

The name Vheissu appears in Thomas Pynchon's novel V., in Chapter 7. It also appears elsewhere in Pynchon's oeuvre in Gravity's Rainbow.


Prior to the album release date, a four-part series of podcasts discussing the making of the album was released by the band, giving previews of each track and how it was recorded. Between mid June and mid August 2005, the group went on the 2005 edition of Warped Tour.[6] "Image of the Invisible" was released to radio on September 27, 2005.[7] A music video was released for "Image of the Invisible" on October 14, 2005, directed by Jay Martin.[8] Vheissu was released on October 18, 2005 by Island Records.[8] The album was released in two separate versions, including a limited edition version containing a booklet detailing the creation process of each track.

In January and February 2006, the group toured Europe with Coheed and Cambria.[9] On February 9, "Red Sky" was made available for streaming.[10] From February to April, the band went on the 2006 edition of the Taste of Chaos tour,[11] which they co-headlined.[10] Following this, the band went on a tour of Europe.[12]


Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AbsolutePunk (99%)[13]
AllMusic 3/5 stars[14]
Entertainment Weekly B+[15]
IGN 6.5/10 [16]
Melodic 4/5 stars [17]
Punknews.org 4/5 stars[18]
Sputnikmusic 4.5/5 stars[19]

The album peaked at #15 on the Billboard 200 chart. By late 2005, it had sold over 90,000 in the U.S.[9] By February 2006, the album had sold over 160,000 copies in the U.S.,[10] and over 184,000 copies since May.[12]

Vheissu received highly positive critical reviews and is now commonly referred to as Thrice's best album due to its complexity and experimentation.[2][3] Noisey referred to it as "the sound of a post-punk band, once preferred by SoCal mall rats, attempting to thwart expectations and break free by incorporating piano melodies, atmospherics, chain gang chants, Japanese folk, and high-concept Pynchon-inspired artwork from Dave Eggers."[20]

Sputnikmusic listed it at No. 28 on their list of the Top 100 Albums of the 2000s.[21] It was listed at No. 20 on Paste's list of the 25 Best Punk Albums of the 2000s.[2] Kerrang! placed it at No. 10 on their Top 20 Albums of 2005.[22]

Track listing[edit]

No. Title Length
1. "Image of the Invisible" 4:14
2. "Between the End and Where We Lie" 3:56
3. "The Earth Will Shake" 4:29
4. "Atlantic" 4:02
5. "For Miles" 4:27
6. "Hold Fast Hope" 4:01
7. "Music Box" 4:46
8. "Like Moths to Flame" 4:26
9. "Of Dust and Nations" 4:50
10. "Stand and Feel Your Worth" 5:52
11. "Red Sky" 4:17


  1. ^ Harris, Chris (July 18, 2005). "Thrice Going Underground — In A Sense — For Enigmatic Vheissu". MTV. Retrieved September 11, 2010. 
  2. ^ a b c "The 25 Best Punk Albums of the 2000s". pastemagazine.com. Retrieved 2017-10-02. 
  3. ^ a b Johnson, Dale (2016-05-18). "The 10 Best Thrice Songs". OC Weekly. Retrieved 2017-10-02. 
  4. ^ Bielich, Brandon. "Thrice explores the rock underworld". Central Florida Future. Retrieved 21 January 2014. 
  5. ^ "Vheissu (liner notes)". Island Records. 2005 
  6. ^ Kaufman, Gil (March 3, 2005). "Warped Tour Lineup, Itinerary Officially Announced". MTV. Retrieved September 18, 2016. 
  7. ^ "FMQB Airplay Archive: Modern Rock". Friday Morning Quarterback Album Report, Incorporated. Retrieved October 30, 2016. 
  8. ^ a b "The Invisible video". Alternative Press. October 14, 2005. Retrieved June 24, 2016. 
  9. ^ a b "Thrice post Christmas songs, "making of" video; announce Euro tour with Coheed And Cambria". Alternative Press. November 30, 2005. Retrieved June 24, 2016. 
  10. ^ a b c "Thrice post audio of new single online". Alternative Press. February 9, 2006. Retrieved June 28, 2016. 
  11. ^ "Taste Of Chaos confirms date-by-date band lineups". Alternative Press. January 13, 2006. Retrieved June 26, 2016. 
  12. ^ a b "Thrice frontman announces solo shows". Alternative Press. May 21, 2006. Retrieved July 28, 2016. 
  13. ^ "Thrice - Vheissu - Album Review". AbsolutePunk. Archived from the original on June 2, 2012. 
  14. ^ "Vheissu - Thrice". AllMusic. 
  15. ^ "Vheissu Review". Entertainment Weekly. October 24, 2005. 
  16. ^ D., Spence (November 9, 2005). "Thrice - Vheissu". IGN. Archived from the original on November 3, 2012. Retrieved July 19, 2017. 
  17. ^ Roth, Kaj (October 5, 2005). "Thrice - Vheissu". Melodic. Retrieved July 19, 2017. 
  18. ^ "Thrice - Vheissu". Punknews.org. 
  19. ^ "Thrice - Vheissu (album review)". Sputnikmusic. 
  20. ^ "A Tribute to the Albums That Came Out Ten Years Ago but No One Gives a Shit About". Noisey. 2015-03-30. Retrieved 2017-10-02. 
  21. ^ "Sputnikmusic - Top 100 Albums of the Decade (30 – 11) «  Staff Blog". www.sputnikmusic.com. Retrieved 2017-10-02. 
  22. ^ "Rocklist.net...Kerrang! Lists Page 1..." www.rocklistmusic.co.uk. Retrieved 2017-10-02.