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Monday, March 16, 2009

File Under: Really?

This just in from Higher Ground: Third Eye Blind is playing the Ballroom on Tuesday, May 5.

In other news, Third Eye Blind apparently still exists.

Out of morbid curiosity, I simply had to go to the show page to check out the details. Upon removing my jaw from the floor after seeing the $35/37 price tag — for Third Eye Blind! By contrast, Jeff "I'm Jeff Fucking Tweedy" Tweedy reduced his ticket prices . . . to $25! Now, where was I?

Oh right. After absorbing the absurdity that a band like Third Eye Blind would command such an outrageous sum, I composed myself and perused their press clipping. I don't mind telling you that it is among the finest examples of PR speak I have ever seen. And by "finest," I of course mean "inscrutable." Check it out:

Since 1997, San Francisco’s Third Eye Blind have recorded three best-selling albums and assembled one career retrospective. 3EB will release ’Ursa Major’, their first studio collection in five years, in autumn 2009.

Led by Stephan Jenkins, 3EB won wide success during a tumultuous group of years when the major-label recording industry was finally losing its grip on an enterprise that for decades it had dominated with steely efficiency. Nothing could have made 3EB happier! 3EB, however, have experienced no comparable loss. Instead, they have gained artistic clarification -- and, surprisingly, a fan base larger than ever.

Participation in the older, untouchable realm of nervous star-making could color a band’s identity. In the case of 3EB, it often blurred the perception of their brilliant musical creations. In recent years, those creations have recast the band among a current generation of fans.

3EB now write, tour, record, and communicate in a fluid new world where their music continues naturally to evolve. Their exchange with their audience is unfiltered.

I'm not even sure what most of that is supposed to mean. But I feel dirty. Verrrrry dirty.


Ben H.

I think it means that while rock music will always ebb and flow with trendy sounds, popular sub-genres, hip instruments, ever-changing industry standards, and certain vocal affectations, 3EB has held true to their roots and put out three spectacular records that always find them expanding on their sound, crafting interesting chord progressions, and having a hell of a time doing it despite popular tastemaker media or an individual unwilling to stretch his mind a little outside what is universally accepted determining it's value. I feel your distrust of press clippings (RIYL Nick Drake), but it is completely true that 3EB have a dedicated fan base that has more than likely put them in this venue/price bracket and while VT is a completely unpredictable market for an artist whether it be Will Oldham or Superstar Birdman, I could easily see them selling out a HG size venue in most major cities at more than $35.

If it were 1976, 3EB would be as big as ELO or Bruce Springsteen and despite history and the artistic leaps that have happened since then that drive others to make different creative choices, it's somewhat ironic that their determination to create brilliantly realized anthemic pop in this day and age defines them as true individuals. I imagine they have no apologies, so I'd pick my jaw up off the dirty floor, grab my comp ticket and make the 3 minute drive down to the Higher Ground if I were you so I could see one hell of a $35 show cause that's a damn good deal and I wouldn't pass it up. Maybe it's not for you, but I certainly wouldn't knock someone for still filling venues and selling records after an unblemished 13 year career. Would you rather they made an album that sounded like Wilco?


"Participation in the older, untouchable realm of nervous star-making could color a band’s identity."

Clearly, this lost something from the original Chinese when they put it through Google Translator.


Just bought my plane tickets. What economic crisis? This is 3EB, motherfuckers!


Ben! *jumping high-five*


Enthusiastic thumbs up, turning slowly to thumbs down, accompanied by mouth fart.

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