Concert Review: Thrice at St. Petersburg's State Theatre

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Saturday night’s Thrice concert at the State Theater in St. Petersburg was a near perfect rock concert that highlighted their ever-evolving sound. The crowd, although subdued early by a trio of opening acts which didn’t seem to complement the band’s style, was energized once lead singer Dustin Kensrue took the mic.

The fiery set began at 10:15 with “All the World is Mad” and “The Weight” from their 2009 release Beggars before really taking off with fan favorite “The Artist in the Ambulance”. From those popular titles the set progressed emphatically, inciting mosh pits and scream-alongs from an intensely demanding crowd. Drummer Riley Breckenridge, however, failed to match his bandmate’s intensity as if saving the best for a last which never came.

Thrice’s experience as seasoned performers was evident in the way they carefully calibrated the show’s ebb and flow. The middle of the set was a deliberate break from the grimy sound that defined the band’s early material and featured songs like “Between the End and Where We Lie,” “Circles” and “The Earth Will Shake,” displaying their evolution into mature song writers.

The set concluded with a return to the upbeat tempos of “Image of the Invisible” and “Doublespeak” for which Kensrue, in classic Davey Jones fashion, rattled a tambourine.

Thrice exited the stage after a 15 song, 80 minute set without having played the title track Beggars. The still hungry crowd cheered the band back for a two song encore. They played a raunchy cover of the never subtle “Helter Skelter” before closing the night with the single that everyone wanted to hear. Thrice knew exactly where “Beggars” belonged in the set and used to it close the show in rousing fashion.

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