Having been a long-time Thrice fan, and a big supporter of the evolution of their sound (starting with their punk-infused roots to their more mature layered synth rock of late) I really like this album.
I am typically not a fan of live albums at all, with their often horrible production value, all-too-often sub-par live band performance, and annoying audience noises interfering with the music.
Live at House of Blues does not suffer this same detriment, for the following reasons:
- Thrice is a superb live group, that captures the sound of their studio performances, while adding subtle differences in the recording that thankfully do not make it sound like a completely different song. Very tight performance by Thrice.
- Production value of the recording might as well be studio; great fidelity, and there is only one few-second segment that has any sort of unintended feedback.
- Audience is very into the music, singing along but never to the point where you hear the audience more than the band. It's sort of like a group backing vocal track, and it works well for this album.
I was fortunate enough to see Thrice during this particular tour (though I saw them at the Avalon in Hollywood, instead of this House of Blues show) and it was easily one of the top three most amazing shows I've ever been to. Thrice is a spectacular live band, and their latest shows were a testament to their maturity as live performers, with perfectly mixed audio and impeccably timed LED lighting that synced so amazingly with the music, one would think the sound and visual choreography were written at the same time.
I have the utmost respect for Thrice as a band, Dustin's unashamed faith that pervades the inspirational and moving lyrics in such allegorical ways, and their ability to impress me with their ever-evolving sound.
While it contains no unreleased songs, Live At The House Of Blues provides a good mix of new Alchemy-era tunes and old favorites for new fans looking to get a slice of Thrice, and long-time followers who are looking to complete their collection.