Thrice

Premier Concerts and Manic Presents:

Thrice

PUP, The So So Glos

Thu, June 15, 2017

Doors: 6:30 pm / Show: 7:30 pm

College Street Music Hall.

New Haven, CT

$19.00 - $22.00

This event is all ages

This event is General Admission Standing Room on the Floor. There will be limited first-come, first-served seating available in the back of the room, but seating is not guaranteed.

Thrice
Thrice
When a band announces a hiatus, the news is generally met with a sigh from the fans and the sinking feeling that this is it; it’s all over. Perhaps the next time you see your favorite band will be years later during the now inevitable nostalgia tour cash-in. No new tunes, passion wrung dry. But back in 2012 when Thrice pressed pause on their collective career there was little doubt in singer Dustin Kensrue’s mind that this was the respite he needed personally, and that this would mean the band could eventually continue creatively. By this stage the quartet, who formed in Orange County, California back in 1998, were in a very different place to when they were kids in high school bonding over skateboarding and punk rock.
“My third daughter was on the way and I was really feeling like my family needed some time away from the kind of touring we were doing,” explains Dustin. “On top of that we had been touring, writing, recording; touring, writing, recording, non-stop, for 14 years or so, and I wanted a break from that and the space and time to pursue other things.”
So after eight albums including their emotionally resonate, pulverizing breakout third record, The Artist in the Ambulance, and the 2007/8’s ambitious duo of concept LPs, The Alchemy Index: Fire and Water and Earth and Air, Dustin called curtains, but no one in Thrice felt blindsided. It was during Major/Minor that the first suggestion of a break began to filter through, then came a heartfelt letter from the singer explaining his reasoning, and in turn the guys adhered to their unspoken pact: if one of them wasn’t in, none of them were. There would not, and could not, be any replacements.
“Thrice is the four of us, and if we’re not all into it, there’s really no point in doing it,” explains drummer Riley Breckenridge. “Even so, when we stopped doing stuff, it was tough.” Apart from focusing on fatherhood, Dustin, who at this point was living up in the Pacific Northwest, released a couple more solo records, while the rest of the band engaged in a range of pursuits, musical and otherwise. Guitarist Teppei Teranishi (who’d also relocated near Dustin) launched a successful leather and canvas goods design company, not to mention continuing to be a father to his three boys. This year Riley also became a dad, but spent the time apart writing about sports and music as a freelancer, teching for Weezer and Jimmy Eat World, and in the most random of career segues, for a year he entered the corporate world and wore a three-piece suit as a sales rep for a high-end bespoke tailor—“I’m just not cut out for that world. It was a soul-sucking experience.” Meanwhile his brother, bassist Eddie Breckenridge, played with a few bands, and got back into furniture making, helping build the interior of Woodcat in LA’s Echo Park. (Which apparently boasts a revolving cast of touring musicians serving up your daily dose of caffeine).
It wasn’t until around Thanksgiving 2014 that Dustin read off a group text that would start to bring their lives back together. Sent after he and Teppei caught a particularly inspiring Brand New concert, the wheels were slowly set in motion. Due to their disparate living locales, the quartet began to share scraps of songs and ideas online, a process that’s commonplace for many, but somewhat foreign to a group used to thrashing out the majority of a record together in one room—and of course, they eventually did. In January and February 2016 Thrice reconvened in Southern California for a period of six weeks to lay down their ninth album, To Be Everywhere Is to Be Nowhere, with the help of producer Eric Palmquist, who Dustin says “gave a just the right amount of feedback on the songs as we were writing; enough to challenge you but not sti e.” He continues: “We were pretty free in the studio. We built up the songs, but we hadn’t meticulously nailed everything down, so it was a good mix of preparation and spontaneity. It was a breath of fresh air.”
Compare the straight ahead punk rhythms of Thrice’s 2000 debut Identity Crisis, to the compositional complexity of 2011’s Major/Minor, and the sonic swerve is stark, yet traceable. Elements of post-hardcore remain—the riffs, the scorched Earth howl of dissatisfaction—but there’s a warmth here too, and the satisfying inclusion of pop melodies, a knack for which they’ve always maintained, no matter how heavy the music. It’s evident from the rst few bars of album opener “Hurricane” and underscored by its titanic chorus.
For this record the singer found he was variously inspired by Stephen King’s seminal book On Writing, philosopher Seneca the Younger, and his feelings on modernity’s relentless connectivity, not to mention the relentless updates of news at home and around the globe. Dustin calls To Be Everywhere… his most vulnerable and most politically-minded album to date.
“Eric and I were talking about how rock music has lost all its nouns whereas hip-hop has become a very vital force, and he was speculating that this was because it was actually dealing with things that are happening concretely, and for some reason rock has become more amorphous in terms of the language used,” explains Dustin. “So I was endeavoring to write a very noun-ful record, very connected to physical things, using metaphors, but really trying to make sure they were visceral and connected quickly, as well as engaging with what’s actually going on in the world.”
And so we have songs like the bleak “Death from Above” written from the perspective of drone operators and featuring the desperately furious chorus, “But I am never sure who I am killing / How many innocents are in the building / I drop death out of the sky.” Dustin’s consideration of the institutionalized violence and racism, both here and abroad, also leaks into first single “Blood on the Sand,” with a drum stick in the verse clacking on the snare’s rim like a ticking bomb.
But there’s an upside on which the Thrice frontman accesses his interior, absorbing Stephen King’s advice to push yourself to write freely—without being overly critical in the first instance—and then be open to feedback afterward. “Because of that I was able to get to a more vulnerable place and I think that makes the songs more powerful,” he says.
One of the album’s most anthemic moments, “Stay with Me,” is an homage to one of Dustin’s favorite Josh Ritter songs “The Temptation of Adam”— about a couple who fall in love after taking shelter in a missile silo fearing the end of the world.
Finally “Salt and Shadow” brings the lean album to its climax with a sprawling six-minute closer that subject-wise echoes the album’s title, tackling the issue we all have of being spread too thin. “Now we have the world in our pocket and it’s so easy to be disconnected from the people around you,” he explains. “Or even you know very little about a lot of things, as opposed to having a better grasp on a fewer number of things.” It’s Thrice at their most muted, exemplifying their ability to communicate impactfully without overdoing it. A piano line, which mirrors the bars of opener “Hurricane,” signifies the LP’s finale.
Is this a comeback? Does Riley, the self-confessed worrier in the band feel the pressure? “We have always just kinda done whatever we wanted to do and we’ve been lucky enough to have a core group of fans who trust us,” he says. And their trust is well founded. Soon they’ll be hitting the road, reconnecting with fans, and really working at interpreting not only their new record, but Thrice’s much beloved back catalogue too.
“It’s exciting,” says Eddie. “I mean, that’s what’s cool about music, it’s a living thing.” And just like their songs morph for the stage, so the band members have forged onwards, splintering for a time, before returning to each other.
“I remember bands when I was growing up, when they hit ten years that seemed just crazy to me,” says Dustin, “and now we are starting to come up on 20! We truly enjoy making music together and there’s something really special about the fact that we’ve had the same four guys in the band this whole time—growing up on the road and trying to figure out what that means.”
PUP
PUP
On February 12th, 2016, PUP revealed the name of its new album - The Dream Is Over. They're the exact words a doctor spoke to singer/guitarist Stefan Babcock upon discovering one of his vocal cords had a small cyst and was beginning to hemorrhage. Given that the band - completed by drummer Zack Mykula, bassist Nestor Chumak and guitarist Steve Sladkowski - played over 450 shows in the last two years in support of its self-titled debut, it's perhaps not surprising that it happened. But while PUP had to end 2015 by cancelling its last couple of shows, by announcing The Dream Is Over the way they did - onstage at a sold-out show in Brooklyn - the Toronto four-piece proved that the exact opposite is true. The Dream Is Over is visible, visceral proof that the dream is still alive. It's just that, after two exhausting years on the road, it turns out that the dream is just very different to what the four of them thought or imagined it would be like.
"I think," says Babcock, "that a lot of people in their mid-20's start to feel this sense of disillusionment - realizing that maybe life isn't going to turn out exactly as you'd pictured it. I love touring and playing music more than anything in the world. But, there's also this realization that maybe the romanticized version of this lifestyle I'd imagined 10 years ago has little or no relation to the actual experience. I used to dream about this shit when I was a kid. But I never dreamt about the bad days - waking up in a Walmart parking lot in a van full of dudes, and thinking 'Fuck, I'm 27, broke, and lonely. What am I doing'. That's where a lot of these songs come from. And while that experience is very specific to me, I don't think the emotions are. I think most people eventually experience that resignation, that acceptance of real life, with all its imperfections. It's called 'growing up'."
Yet if these ten songs bear the marks, bruises and scars of the realities of their experiences, it also captures the sheer joy of their journey. Yes, it starts out with the marked venom of "If This Tour Doesn't Kill You, I Will" and its gentle distaste for life in a van, but as the song accelerates towards the end, there's a thrill and a happiness and a playful exuberance to the music that defies and overpowers the sentiment of the lyrics. Which, as it turns out, is very similar to what happens on the road, too.
"I always find there's two types of days on tour," says Babcock. "Eight or nine out of 10 are the best days of my life, and then one or two are literally the worst fucking thing I can imagine. So it's just like a rollercoaster ride. There's no middle ground. And that's where a lot of the record is coming from - Accepting the bad with the good, because on good days, I feel like the luckiest guy in the world."
As such, The Dream Is Over is the sound of a band not just surviving the storm, but thriving in it. It's a raw and honest account of real life - which is precisely what their dream turned out to be. Yet if these songs cater to specific experiences, they're also wholly relatable to a whole lot more. "Sleep In The Heat," for example, is a jilting, angular anthem that's also a poignant tribute to Babcock's late pet chameleon Norman - they'd met onset during the band's "Mabu" video and he took her as his own, but after an infection led to her tongue needing to be surgically removed, she refused to eat and sadly died. Elsewhere, "The Coast" is a dark, doom-laden track that shudders and shivers with anxiety and neurosis but which rallies against those very emotions and grows stronger by confronting the emotions which inspired it, while "Old Wounds" is a blistering, straightforward hardcore punk song which bursts with energy of the kind you only get when you're really, truly experiencing everything life can throw at you.
"In the end," contemplates Babcock, "I'm happy to have shitty experiences like that. I didn't expect this to be an easy road. The past couple years have really given us a whole new perspective."
That new perspective is - ironically - in full force on The Dream Is Over. The bulk of the music was written last spring in a brief period of downtime between tours, and recorded in the fall at home in Toronto with David Schiffman, who also produced the first album. And as if to prove the age old cliché that what doesn't kill you makes you stronger, The Dream Is Over, for all the trials and tribulations that inspired it, finds PUP as confident, as tight as a musical unit and as in tune with each other as they have ever been. It's a very conscious act of rebellious defiance that turns this crazy dream of theirs back on its head.
'We had a clear idea of what we wanted to do this time around," says Babcock. "We knew that we wanted it to be heavier than the first record, we knew that we wanted to keep all the weird, quirky time signatures and we knew that we wanted to have banging choruses. We went into it with one mindset and everybody knew what their own individual goals were on the record."
As for that self-aware, tongue-in-cheek title? Everybody at the show in Brooklyn could tell it was ironic, that it's as far from the truth as anything. One listen to these songs will confirm the same.
The So So Glos
The So So Glos
The So So Glos began in 1991 when brothers Alex Levine & Ryan Levine met Zach Staggers in kindergarten in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn. Through a series of divorces and remarriages the three became brothers. They played music before they knew how to under monikers such as SPITT, Urban Eyze & Every Other Weekend.

In 2007 Matt Elkin joined the band to complete the family and The So So Glos were born. The four went on to co-found The Market Hotel in 2008 & Shea Stadium in 2010. The two D.I.Y. all ages music venues have become staples of Brooklyn's underground music community.

In 2013 The band released Blowout on their own imprint of Shea Stadium Records. Blowout saw praise from the grassroots fanbase they had built as well as mainstream media outlets propelling them from garage band to local heroes in the national spotlight. The release of Blowout also secured 'em their national television debut performing "Son of an American" on the Late Show with David Letterman.

The So So Glos live show is known for its high energy and crowd engagement. Whether they play a punk house in Brooklyn, a beach party in Miami or a Basketball Arena in San Antonio, they always play with the same excitement & zeal the songs deserve.

They have recently shared the stage with bands such as Conor Oberst's reunited Desaparecidos, The Pogues, Trail of Dead, Ted Leo, Brand New, Rocket From The Crypt, Matt & Kim, The Hold Steady & Raekwon of Wu Tang Clan.

To date they have released 2 LP's, 2 EP's & several singles - all with production by their childhood friend and lifelong producer Adam Reich (aka The 5th Glo).

They are always on tour.
Venue Information:
College Street Music Hall.
238 College Street
New Haven, CT, 06510
http://www.collegestreetmusichall.com