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  • Nick Shotwell

Third Eye Blind Concert Review

On Sunday, June 30 Third Eye Blind came to the Farm Bureau Insurance Lawn at the White River outdoor music venue with Jimmy Eat World and Ra Ra Riot in tow. It was a hot and dry Sunday evening in Indianapolis and attendance was high, even for the first of the three bands. Ra Ra Riot provided a fairly mellow opening act. Lead vocalist Wes Miles stood out from his bandmates putting forth visible effort in his craft, even seemingly pushing the limits of his vocal cords. Bassist Mathieu Santos and guitarist Milo Bonacci held back their emotions and stoically and effortlessly played away. With a short break after Ra Ra Riot, Jimmy Eat World burst on stage and completely changed the tone. Dressed like dudes on the street who were handed instruments and gifted talent, they really seemed to play like it might be their first and last chance. I really enjoyed that they knew it was hot and it seemed like Jim Adkins, lead singer, must have thought, “screw this Indiana heat”, and sweated and rocked on. Adkins acknowledged to the crowd that he battles with nervousness on stage, even holding out his hand as a gesture of how he feels like he’s trembling. I sensed people appreciated that. That too, gave the impression these dudes must appreciate they have the opportunity to play their music all over the world, touring with other great bands. When it came time for Third Eye Blind, they didn’t quite come out with the bang of Jimmy Eat World. But, instead they revealed themselves silhouetted behind a screen. Semi-cloaked behind the screen with a strong backlight, the bands’ shadow revealed them in a group hug, or a pre-game huddle and starting their tunes further back on the stage platform. However, Stephan Jenkins, a seasoned and confident front-man, was simply slowly taking control of the scene. After the first song, under the cloak of the screen, Stephan came on down to address the crowd. He asked each person to turn and tell the person next to them that they were appreciated, sort of how you do in church, telling people, “good morning” and shaking hands. What a unique and time-proven effective way to engage the audience and to get them to relax and be happy about the moment. Stephan jokingly told everyone that they were supposed to have a new album out now, “…but, hey, we’re Third Eye Blind. We f**ked up!” A band has to know their dedicated fans well to be that honest! Third Eye Blind played their major tunes, along with some new music and proved to be a bright spot in this summer’s concert calendar.

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