311 concert review

311 holds a very special place in my heart. My like for them began around 15 years ago when I was in 9th grade and feeling too cool/insecure for school. I listened to their self-titled album non-stop (who didn't really?). I even took my interest in them so far as to design the 311 logo on my bedroom ceiling with glow-in-the-dark stars. But as far as my fan-dom went, I never got the chance to see them in concert, and I always regretted it.

Well that all changed last week when I finally got the chance to see 311 at the USANA amphitheatre. (Which, by the way, is in the armpit of nowhere) Keep in mind that I've grown since 9th grade. Not maturity-wise at all, but my tastes have certainly changed. Yes, I have heard their albums they've put out over the past 10 years but it's not something I'd listen to on repeat.

Sublime with Rome opened up the show. Since when did they change their name back to Sublime eh? I saw them in concert many years back and they went by the "Long Beach Dub All Stars." I guess enough time has passed and they realize kids don't even know who Bradley Nowell is anymore, and the band wants to re-capitalize on the old classics. Their new lead singer is Rome Ramirez, hence the addition of "with Rome." They put on a good show. Rome gave himself credibility and is certainly talented. At times the rest of the band felt a little too distorted. They played new songs, which were fine, but the crowd went crazy for the old stuff. They finished the set strong, with one of my personal favorites, Date rape (that sounded wrong).

After a long intermission 311 finally took the stage. The crowd was completely into it. Nick Hexum, who dances like a very white person, came out strong and didn't let up. The 16 year old in me was very happy to see he and S.A. Martinez playing off one another. Their voices didn't falter once during the entire concert. Even their harmonies were smooth. Honestly, the entire band performs album quality work in their live shows.

The set was great for long-time fans and the young hoochies unfamiliar with their discography. Of course they played a majority of songs from their self-titled and most successful album. The crowd went nuts for All mixed up, Down, and Don't stay home. To promote their latest cd, they played Sunset in July, and Weightless. But they really did keep the set confined to their hits like Amber, but also played some deep cuts from their 90's. Even though I haven't been their biggest fan these past 10 years I still knew all the lyrics and I was singing along. Yes, I'm "that guy" at the concert. My only issue is that I wish they played more songs from "Music" and "Grassroots." Even when they said they were playing stuff from their old fans, they still only played "Down." Fail.

I was hesitant to go to this concert, but I am so glad that I did. My interest in 311 has been revitalized and I'll give their new cd a second listen. They put on an extremely solid show and I would definitely go see them again next year. 5 glow-in-the-dark stars!


Anonymous said...

I saw them in San diego and Irvine last week as well.I have seen them at least 20 times in the past 15 yrs they never....never disappoint. Rome does a very good job as new front man as i am a fan of Sublime as well....All in all the Unity tour was a huge success in my eyes

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