Show Review

Rachel Mooney
It’s true: I don’t look like your average hardcore fan. With that being said, there’s nothing I enjoy more than a live show; the heavier and the louder, the better. A live show is in my opinion the point when an avid listener reaches a new level of intimacy with a band, and although Thrice can teeter on the verge of ambient at times, on their recent visit to Columbus Thrice shredded their way into my heart, making proverbial musical love to me all night long.

Thrice has always produced some seriously funky beats unmistakably their own, from their break into the scene with Identity Crisis to their latest album, Beggars.
They own their sound completely but given the chance to see them live, you can feel the power behind these rhythms in a way unlike anything a Bose system can provide. Not only did Thrice exceed my expectations live, the members of this band stand for more than just rock & roll. From the beginning, Thrice made a point to donate large portions of their proceeds to charities, something the band has continued to do and inspiration for their lyrics is drawn from scripture to writers such as C.S. Lewis. Since the time if Identity Crisis, Thrice has essentially morphed into multiple bands musically in terms of their eclectic and versatile sound and their ability to continually write and produce groundbreaking music.

And speaking of groundbreaking, one Thrice album that must be mentioned is The Alchemy Index, an album which any music lover, free thinker or creative mind alike can appreciate. In my opinion it’s superb in every sense: melodic, diverse, groundbreaking in that I have never seen anything like it. Thrice attempts to emulate and essentially capture the elements and succeeds masterfully in almost sonnet form through a series of CDs labeled appropriately for their ambient sound: Air & Earth, Water & Fire. And trust me when I say it’s a fucking masterpiece. Air & Earth consists of light, ethereal tracks finger-picked beautifully while Water literally sounds as if the tracks were mixed under high tide with its heavy distortion. Fire is as heavy as it is intense, with every track sounding as if it spewed from below in a fiery inferno. No, this music was not thoughtlessly thrown together, but rather a work of art that I could not wait to hear live.

Upon arrival at the always-classy Newport Music Hall, (one of my favorite venues, and no I’m not ashamed) I immediately got a great vibe from the crowd- this was going to be a good night. Manchester Orchestra was already on the stage and I was immediately hooked. Their entire set seemed seamless, one never ending song which peaked and crescendo with dynamics in the small venue. The lead singer was a P-E-R-F-O-R-M-E-R and owned the stage like any good front-man should. After playing for nearly an hour, they exited the stage and an antsy wait for the main event began.

Two beers later, Thrice finally came on but it was more than worth the wait. They opened fast and jumped from songs off Beggars, Identity Crisis, and The Alchemy before finally settling back on many of the new songs off Beggars. ‘The Weight’ was a high point in the show as the audience quieted down and sat in awe. ‘Fire Breather,’ was another highlight with most of the crowd singing along with Dustin, and although the front-man was not a huge talker between songs, he was by no means stagnant. Raw energy exuded from all of the members who didn’t slow down for a moment, aggressively ending one song only to lead directly into another. After finishing their set, Thrice walked off the stage only to be summoned back by a crowd chanting, ‘One more Song! ONE MORE SONG!’ This eventually gave way to an expected and much appreciated encore off Beggars which polished off the evening. I was excited, half deafened and on a natural high - exactly how one should feel when leaving a show.

Okay, I love this band, and maybe I am biased. But if nothing else, I respect Thrice as a band who has made it through over a decade together and is still able to push the boundaries while remaining true to their diehard fans. Thrice can compose and produce and it’s this very reason Thrice is able to grow with their fans; they are one of seldom few bands which can hold my musical attention over the years, scratching every itch even I didn’t know I had with their own brand of musical diversity. From organic, acoustic ambient to muddy hardcore, Thrice has more than successfully experimented with multiple genres and crossed musical boundaries over the years, sometimes even within the same album, all the while never sacrificing lyrical content. Not only is Thrice a band worth listening to, they are a band with something to say and with every experimental endeavor they take on, Thrice only further proves that their sound is ever-changing, seamlessly and brilliantly alike.