Third Eye Blind blows roof off of the Calvin Theatre

By Jessica Chaiken

Kristin LaFratta/Daily Collegian

(Kristin LaFratta/Daily Collegian)

Hundreds of fans flooded Northampton last Monday night for the chance to see Third Eye Blind headline the Calvin Theatre, with Iamdynamite providing the opening act.

The headliners did not disappoint, and their raw talent and alternative rock melodies electrified the crowd. Fans came hungry and left satisfied after hearing the band’s renowned classics along with some of its newer, stylistically different material.

Iamdynamite kicked off the show at 8 p.m. with a set of songs that warmed up the crowd. The alternative rock duo from Detroit, Michigan showcased their unique style through their percussive beats and jarring vocals.

The band spent the majority of its set playing songs off of “Wasa Tusa,” its 2014 release.

Iamdynamite definitely brought interesting character to the theater, showcasing its varied instrumentation, such as what it called its “big yellow shaker,” or in other words, a maraca.

Though Iamdynamie brought character to the stage, nothing could have prepared the crowd for Third Eye Blind’s epic, smoke-covered entrance, which brought the entire crowd to its feet.

Having been around for more than two decades, Third Eye Blind could not have sounded better. Each song sounded like it was straight off the record, crisp and perfectly pitched. And their chemistry up on stage was one of impeccable synchronization.

The band began the show with the hit single off of its new album “Dopamine,” “Everything is Easy.” And after a few more selections from the group’s newer catalog – including “Graduate” – they surprised everyone with their classic “Never Let You Go,” which turned into a theater-wide sing-a-long.

Lead vocalist Stephan Jenkins artfully worked the crowd with his theatrical performance. Jenkins even tried to create a friendlier environment by urging the audience members to interact with strangers in the crowd and introduce themselves to each other.

Jenkins was not the only theatrical presence on stage though, as Brad Hargreaves – the band’s drummer – treated the audience to a lengthy and impressive drum solo between songs.

Most of the tracks performed were newer material, with a few intermittent throwbacks cleverly added in between. Jenkins worked his way about the stage during the show, showcasing his other musical talents by alternating between singing, playing the guitar, the drums and even the tambourine.

Amid the new and old songs, the band threw in a few slower tracks in the middle of the set to break things up a little, ending the segment with the song “How’s it Going to Be.”

The audience that turned out for the show was an even mix of younger college-aged fans and older – probably original – middle-aged fans. But age was just a number on Monday night, as fans old and new rocked out to the same harmonious acoustics that Third Eye Blind provided.

The band ended its first set with one of their most popular hits, “Jumper,” which had the whole crowd jamming along to the lyrics. But of course, the group came back on for an encore as the audience screamed for their return, closing with its mega-hit, “Semi-Charmed Life.”

Jenkins concluded by addressing the audience and the fans saying, “I’m going to get in so much trouble from my record company for saying this but: if you buy it, you buy it; if you steal it, you steal it…” referring to the pirating of Third Eye Blind’s music. Besides the legality of this statement, Jenkins is clearly dedicated to the music and to the fans, and wants the band’s music to circulate, no matter how it is obtained.

To the crowd’s surprise, Third Eye Blind then entertained a second and final encore, singing more tracks from “Dopamine.”

If there was one thing to be taken from this concert, it is that Third Eye Blind, after more than two decades as a band, still has a lot of energy. Its raw talent can still be noticed, and it continues to grow.

The show proved Third Eye Blind’s capabilities and gave fans hope for the band’s future.

Jessica Chaiken can be reached at [email protected]