Thursday, June 05, 2008

Thrice at the House of Blues Anaheim

The first time I saw Thrice was at the House of Blues Anaheim when they opened for Face To Face. Thrice was touring in support of The Illusion of Safety and they demolished the stage. I distinctly remember at least half of the House of Blues empty out after Thrice's set. I was hooked.

Thrice has adapted their sound pulling in some other influences to broaden their sound instead of remaking the same record. The Alchemy Index is an ambitous effort as they penned songs with inspiration from the elements of Air, Earth, Fire and Water. I missed the first leg of Thrice's tour but was fortunate enough to catch this show at the House of Blues Anaheim.


Thrice fans are known to be quite the devoted bunch and I was curious to see how Aushua's reverb drenched tunes would go over. Aushua's dynamics shined through the House of Blues soundsystem as I could better detect the nuances in their songs. "Reverberation" echoed loudly as the band gave a spirited performance. I often glanced at the audience to look for a reaction and most of the audience was listening attentively which I interpreted as a good sign. I still encourage you to pick up their EP No Harm Done as it is solid from start to finish. "Sister Saves" was glorious as always with the audience starting to stir and buzz as they closed their set. I am willing to bet Aushua will have a headlining slot at the House of Blues Anaheim one of these days.


Pelican grabbed my attention a few years ago when they played a Taste of Chaos tour at the Long Beach Arena with the Deftones and Thrice. Pelican create dense driving metal inspired jams that ebb and flow. Pelican is touring behind their new album City Of Echoes, which I have yet to pick up but have been enjoying their tune "Dead Between The Walls" when I spotted it on Headbanger's Ball.

Circa Survive

I wasn't too familiar with Circa Survive but they put on an energetic show and a majority of the crowd seemed to enjoy them.


I was intrigued by the three keyboard and piano stations set up on the stage for Thrice. This was a far cry from the time I was at their Chain Reaction show when they filmed the "Deadbolt" video. Thrice have tapped into their inner Radiohead with expansively experimental tunes and continue to mature. "Hold Fast Hope" was a fiery start to the evening as the pit behind me started to stir as I was taking some photos. Dustin Kensrue (Vocals/Guitars/Keyboards) has learned to preserve his vocal chords over the years by singing versus consistently screaming. Eddie Breckenridge (Bass) still plays a Gibson Grabber Bass that is immediately identifiable in the mix and is a vital part to the overall sound of Thrice.

"Digital Sea" was aquatic in its aural nature as Dustin visited his Korg Kaoss pad to alter the effects on his vocals. "Firebreather" simultaneously burned and seared at the same time as the members of Aushua rushed the stage for the sing along chorus. "The Messenger" delivered in spades as Teppei Teranishi (Guitars) thrashed along. Thrice sculpted a well thought out setlist as they transitioned to "Broken Lungs". The pit would later swirl when Thrice broke into "Motion Without Meaning" which caught me off guard but I was more than happy to sing along.

Thrice brought it down a notch with an acoustic rendition "Stare at The Sun" that had the crowd singing and clapping along. It was astonishing how everyone knew the lyrics as it was a testament to the devotion of their fanbase. "Come All You Weary" kept the crowd singing along as Teppei wailed on some blues based riffs. "All That's Left" sounded as urgent as ever with the band refusing to let up as they tore into "Silhouette" without pausing. "The Artist In The Ambulance" kicked things into another dimension as the crowd was still singing along at full volume. The multiple requests for "Deadbolt" throughout the night were finally silenced as band saved it for their encore. The audience stuck their hands in the air and rapidly pretended to be fretting their air guitars as Teppei came to the front of the stage. "Cold Cash and Colder Hearts" continued Thrice's frenzied pace. "The Earth Will Shake" was seismic in its rumble. Dustin mentioned that they were filming both nights at the House of Blues for a DVD release. They already have one copy sold.

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