The Wiltern

Live Review: Thrice at The Wiltern

Screen Shot 2018-11-19 at 10.17.22 AM.png

One of the best feelings in the world, at least to me, is seeing a band live that you haven’t seen in a long time and they absolutely kill. Last night at The Wiltern in Los Angeles, Thrice wrapped up their tour and they without a doubt surpassed any expectations I had and got rid of any lingering thoughts I had about the band. Touring in support of their new (and 10th) album Palms, Thrice ripped through their 100 minute set with a real sense of vigor and power that I haven’t seen from them since I saw them on The Artist and The Ambulance cycle.

Screen Shot 2018-11-19 at 10.17.53 AM.png
Before I get into how commanding and in the zone Thrice was, I’d like to talk about the direct support, The Bronx. For many years I was a huge fan of the band but, over the last few years I had slowly given up on them. They really lost me with all the Mariachi El Bronx stuff they did and their “punk rock” side became a bit watered down (that’s just my opinion). This night though, my mind was changed a bit. The Bronx went off last night and it reminded me of what drew me into them in the first place. Singer Matt Caughthran was a man on a mission last night. His presence alone was captivating. Their set was chock full of old gems and new songs. Certain songs like “Knifeman,” “Heart Attack American,” and “History’s Stranglers” killed. Their set this evening gave me a renewed sense of enjoying the band. Matt even got in the crowd for a few songs to get the crowd pumped and into it.¬† The one kicker I still have is the rest of the band besides Matt, seem very stagnate. Matt can’t be the only one that gets really into it. All in all though, The Bronx seemed to be finding their “punk rock” side again. I hope that energy carries over to their next record.
Screen Shot 2018-11-19 at 10.18.26 AM.png
Now the main event. Thrice took the stage a little after 9:00pm and for the next hour and forty minutes, they absolutely owned The Wiltern. Starting their set with “Only Us” was perfect and set the tone for what was to come. As their set raged on with songs like “The Artist in The Ambulance,” “Hurricane,” “Red Sky,” “Black Honey,” and “Anthology,” you could feel the bands energy radiate through the crowd. The roars of sing alongs at times almost was louder than Dustin on stage. Songs from their new album like “The Grey,” “The Dark,” “A Branch In The River,” “Hold Up A Light” and “Beyond The Pines” sounded superb and better live than they do on the record. A few other highlights of their set were¬† “Firebreather,” “Beggars,” “In Exile,” and “Paper Tigers,” the latter of which really go the crowd in a frenzy. Before playing the song, Dustin Kensrue told the crowd to be careful with this one. Their encore, though only a couple songs, went way back to The Illusion of Safety as they blasted through old classics “Deadbolt,” and To Awake and Avenge The Dead.” I have to give praise to each memeber of the band. Riley Breckinridge looked and sounded so damn comfortable playing his drums. It seemed like it was second nature. Bassist Ed Breckinridge was right in the pocket and totally in the zone as he thrashed around getting more and more into the set as the night went on. Teppei Teranishi has always had this calm demeanor when on stage but, this evening, even he was letting loose a bit more and leaving it all out there. And finally Dustin Kensrue, who also celebrated his birthday this evening, was unstoppable. Even with a raspy voice, which you would have had no idea until he mentioned it, was on fire. His command of the stage and crowd was astounding. I haven’t seen all four of them this good in a long time. I will even go as far as saying that this might just be the best show I’ve ever seen them do.

The four guys that make up Thrice each play a distinct role in not just creating the sound and if it were anyone else playing with them, it sure wouldn’t sound right. Every song picked for their set was perfect and impressionable. They managed to cover all their basis of picking gems from each of their albums. As a fan of the band dating back to The Illusion of Safety, it’s been really interesting to listen and watch the bands growth. They’ve always been true to themselves and what they want to create. Sure they lost me for a bit but, since they returned with To Be Everywhere Is To Be Nowhere, I’ve been back and it’s been amazing to be a fan of the band again. I can’t wait to see where the go next and their next tour.

Thrice Set List:
01) Only Us
02) Image Of The Invincible
03) The Artist in the Ambulance
04) Hurricane
05) A Branch In The River
06) Red Sky
07) Black Honey
08) Daedalus
09) The Grey
10) Anthology
11) Firebreather
12) The Dark
13) In Exile
14) Beggars
15) Hold Up A Light
16) Stare At The Sun
17) Paper Tigers
18) The Long Defeat
19) Beyond The Pines
Encore:
20) Deadbolt
21) To Awake and Avenge The Dead

Photos By: Alisa Lacy

Live Show Recap: Caleb Scofield Memorial Show

44035572_10157904102124691_5180517903790768128_n.jpg

This is not a review, rather this is a recap of this magical show. Back in March of this year, Cave In bassist Caleb Scofield was tragically killed in a car accident. Since his passing, his peers have come together to raise funds for his family as well as celebrate Caleb’s legacy. This past evening at The Wiltern, the second tribute show to celebrate Caleb happened and it was something special.

(more…)

Live Review: Gojira at The Wiltern

IMG_0804.JPG

There truly is something beautiful about heavy music in a live setting. The excitement, chaos, and dedication really comes through in a way that I don’t think any other genre of music can compare to. Last night at the Wiltern, Gojira decimated the audience with a set of forceful magnitude that left me in total awe and sore as all hell from headbanging and moshing.

The opener for the evening was Tesseract. This 5 piece U.K. based band, wasn’t really what I had in mind for the warm up band. Their set was pretty drab and boring. As musicians these guys can play with the best of them, but after a while it all just started to sound the same. At one point I looked over to my friend and he was saying that parts of their songs, especially the vocals, sounded a bit like Incubus. And naturally the more I thought about it, the songs did have that vibe. I don’t remember the song but, if you were to sing the Incubus song “Pardon Me,” over the music, it fit perfectly. Needless to say, this just wasn’t my cup of tea.

Before Gojira even took the stage, the loud chants of their name permeated through the venue, and when they appeared the roar of the crowd was near deafening. Their new album Magma is a tremendous piece of music and the songs live were like a volcano exploding. Their set consisted of songs from all their albums, with a focus on playing songs off Magma. Singer/guitarist Joe Duplantier, his brother drummer Mario Duplantier, guitarist Christian Andreu, and bassist Jean-Michael Labadie, play with so much fury. The lyrics of Joe Duplantier are heavy and poetic. Throughout the night I kept thinking the set list was great. Songs like “Stranded,” “Silvera,” “The Cell,” “Only Pain,” “Flying Whales,” “Explosia,” “Oroborus,” “Vacuity,” sounded amazing. Mario Duplatier’s drum solo was something spectacular and intense. By the end of their set, it was very clear that Gojira are a force to be reckoned with and not just in the heavy music circles.

What a great night. I don’t even mind the horrible neck pain I have. When a show like this is that good, it’s all worth every ounce of pain. This was my third time seeing Gojira and each time they keep bringing it more and more. If you haven’t seen them or heard them, I strongly recommend you do!

Review and Photo By: Brian Lacy

 

Live Review: Peter Hook & The Light at The Wiltern

IMG_0768.JPG

I was 10 years old when I first heard about Joy Division. Nine Inch Nails had a song on The Crow soundtrack called “Dead Souls.” I thought what Nine Inch Nails album is this on that I don’t have. Well it turned out to be a cover, and I immediately sought out to discover who the band was, which was Joy Division. From that point I started to really get into Joy Division, and could definitely hear where Trent got some of his inspiration and influence from. So when the opportunity came up to see Peter Hook play songs from Joy Division’s catalog, it was a no brainer, I had to go.

The first part of the night was dedicated to New Order. I’ve never really been a huge New Order fan, with the exception of their first couple albums, and the song “True Faith,” so the impact of the first set of the evening didn’t get me very excited. But the great thing about live music is that it has the ability to change your mind about things. I can honestly say that after the set which was full of great songs like “Ceremony,” “Blue Monday,” “In A Lonely Place,” “Thieves Like Us,” “Confusion,” and many more. Starting the night off with New Order was a great way to bring about energy to the almost full crowd.

 

FullSizeRender.jpg

 

Now the second set of the night was what I was waiting for. I’ve waited a very long time to hear these songs live. I’ve heard plenty of other bands over the years cover their songs and it always seems to get crowds really excited. Peter Hook delivered a great set of classic soothing songs, so much so that if you looked around at the audience, you could tell that you were in a place that was full of joy. The signature sound of Peter’s bass rang through the venue with bombastic pleasure. Songs like “Shadowplay,” “She’s Lost Control,” “Atmosphere,” “Dead Souls,” “Warsaw,” “No Love Lost,” and “Love Will Tear Us Apart,” were absolutely done brilliantly and left me feeling like I could successfully cross this off my list of bands/shows I need to see.

The entire evening was great, seeing all the people in attendance feel right at home. No matter the age, fans were excited to be hearing these songs. There was a lot of dancing and singing along, which was astonishing to see. On two occasions Moby came out to join the band for a couple songs. Once in the New Order set to sing “Ceremony,” and again during the Joy Division set to sing “Transmission.” Moby was extraordinary as a guest. He was really into it, and you could tell these songs meant a lot to him as well. At the end of the night, Peter Hook came out for a final bow and took of his sweat drenched shirt and threw it in the crowd, showing off his ripped physique. That was quite a punk rock moment and a fantastic way to end the night.

 

New Order Set List:

In A Lonely Place
Procession
Cries and Whispers
Ceremony (with Moby)
Everything’s Gone Green
Temptation
Blue Monday
Confusion
Thieves Like Us
The Perfect Kiss
Subculture
Shellshock
State of the Nation
Bizarre Love Triangle
True Faith
1963

 

Joy Division Set List:

No Love Lost
Shadowplay
From Safety to Where?
Komakino
These Days
Warsaw
Leaders of Men
Digital
Autosuggestion
Transmission (with Moby)
She’s Lost Control
Incubation
Dead Souls
Atmosphere
Love Will Tear Us Apart

 

Review and Photos By: Brian Lacy