Aging, But Timeless: Third Eye Blind and Ra Ra Riot at Britt Festival
No longer fresh-faced 90s rockers from San Francisco, but still Third Eye Blind provides a solid show, and over their three decades have amassed a solid fan base—many who filled the Britt Pavilion nearly all the way to their back fence on June 16. Along with them on the tour is Ra Ra Riot, who opened for them at Britt.
Compared to Third Eye Blind, Ra Ra Riot are the new kids on the block, even though the indie-rock band has an extensive discography of its own, extending back to 2007 with its first self-titled EP. They are on the road promoting a new album titled “Superbloom” that will come out Aug. 9.
The band began their set with “Absolutely,” following it up with one of their best known songs “Beta Love” from the album of the same name. Vocalist Wes Miles has an effortless voice that might make some unsure if it would be as good live, but at the show he proved his consistency in vocals and energy. Bassist Mathieu Santos carried the band’s energy from song to song with each note, getting even those who weren’t familiar with Ra Ra Riot swaying along to the music. Guitarist Milo Bonacci and drummer Kenny Bernard simply reinforced the band’s summer sound throughout their set.
The band also played their newest released single “Flowers” from their upcoming album, garnering a few cheers from the crowd. The band captures the sound of summer as though that’s exactly what they’re meant to do, playing light songs with heavy meanings at the same time. If anything, their set could have been louder.
As soon as Third Eye Blind took stage, they wasted no time testing the crowd’s enthusiasm—and the PA’s capacity. When the band broke into “Never Let You Go,” the audience jumped to its feet, singing along to the 1999 hit—and remained on its feet for most of the performance.
Early on in the show vocalist Stephan Jenkins urged each person in the crowd to find someone they don’t know and tell him or her how happy they are to see him or her here. The audience cheered in response, turning to people they’ve never met like old friends.
The band’s gratitude for its faithful fanbase was palpable throughout the show and was felt the most during the encore. The mosh pit right in front of the stage was packed all the way to reserved seats, where the band interacted with the crowd throughout their performance.