Thrice, Dashboard deliver emo punk and Civics.
Jack Shepler
May 21, 2004
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Rock Music Reviews

Dashboard Confessional and Thrice headlined the Civic tour. (RMR/Jack Shepler)

CINCINNATI, OH (RMR) - Up and coming band Say Anything opened for the Civic Tour on May 19 at Riverbend Music Center in Cincinnati, Ohio. The 4-member punk rock band performed in their first major tour, just a few months before their first album will release, Say Anything is a Real Boy, on August 3rd.

According to their own description, the new album is "the soundtrack for teenage guys, covering topics of first love, homework anguish and having your balls itch in the middle of class". While the latter part went unnoticed by me at the show, I did come away with a few favorites, such as But a Feeling Illness and The Keg is Bleeding. Full length MP3s are available on SoundClick.

Next on the roster was Thrice, the energy filled punk band that started as skater friends in high school. They formed in 1998, practicing in Riley and Eddie's living room and eventually getting their first gig at a benefit show. Their efforts were well worth it, as they've released their third full length album, The Artist in the Ambulance, last July. With their hard hitting punk-emo edge, they've easily worked their way into my favorite bands list. In particular, "Cold Cash and Co", "Silhouette", and "Blood Clots and Black Holes" have landed in my favorites playlist.

Their live performance is certainly one to be seen by fans of bands like Thursday and Alkaline Trio. However, one should note that Thrice most definitely has their own sound - something that's quite comendable in today's world of unoriginal sound.

Thrice also played the Warped Tour 2003, where Rock Music Review's Katie Bennett had a chance to sit down with drummer Riley Breckenridge.

Headlining the tour, emo superstar Dashboard Confessional held the audience captive, as is their typical fashion. Although the band performance was awesome, it was obvious the crowd much preferred Chris Carabba's solo acoustic performance.

"Yeah, acoustic! It's about time!"shouted one concert goer, who also said the most recent album was a sellout in comparison to the solo works. But I give them no notice, as I personally like both the acoustic works and the new stuff, each a great sound of their own.

Despite the few people that made their opinions vocal, a majority of the audience sang every word of every song, a gesture most flattering to any band or rock star, no matter how big they are.

While Dashboard Confessional is one of the better performances to experience, I'm wary of the corporate angle. Chris no longer wears a simple t-shirt and jeans, and his humble image seems to be deteriorating as well. With all spotlights on him, and none on the band, he's clad in designer clothes and putting his name on a tour named for a new car. I guess that's just the price of being good.

Even with my opinions about image and corporate sponsorship, I still totally respect Dashboard Confessional, and Thrice, and highly suggest you stop in on the Civic Tour.

Exclusive photos by Jack Shepler: