I’m Gonna Change Your Life”–an optimistic declaration if there ever was one. But the first song of The Thermals new album, Personal Life, leaves much to be desired.

Luckily, and not surprisingly, the next three songs, “I Don’t Believe You”, “Never Listen to Me” and “Not Like Any Other Feeling” are closer to The Thermals’ Now We Can See calibre.

the thermals - personal life - rock

Released under the Kill Rock Stars record label on September 7, 2010, Personal Life is the band’s fifth studio album. While this album is much softer and less aggressive than The Thermals’ past releases, especially their first three albums, More Parts per Million, Fuckin A, and The Body, The Blood, The Machine, it is a great listen. Personal Life seems to be filled with more lovey, relationship-focused lyrics and stays away from the angry, political lyrics we were first introduced to when The Thermals emerged in 2002.

Fair enough, it lacks the typical Thermals energy, but the best songs on the album are the softer, more melodic songs like “Only For You”, “Never Listen to Me” and “You Changed My Life.”

The first single of the album, “I Don’t Believe You” is pretty repetitive, but more upbeat than most of the songs. There’s nothing worse than a repetitive song, and let’s face it, The Thermals have their share of those, but all in all, Personal Life is far less repetitive than the band’s past albums. And the video for “I Don’t Believe You” is kick ass and makes up for it.

While Personal Life has a weak beginning, it finishes strong. “You Changed My Life” has the best lyrics and guitars riffs of all the songs on the album. It is the epitome of catchy Thermals.

I still think Now We Can See is the best album by The Thermals, but Personal Life is a close second.