Three Days Grace Tear the Roof Off Tullio Area…Again

The boys in Three Days Grace must love Erie. Or maybe they love the Tullio Arena. Or perhaps it’s the fans? Yeah, I’m pretty sure it’s that last one because the band never seems to go too long without returning to both Erie and the Tullio. This time they return to town with a new record in “Life Starts Now,” and a new tour, bringing both Flyleaf and Chevelle in tow.

Sure, the opening bands and some of the songs might be different, but one thing is not – these guys are still one of, if not the, very best live acts touring today.

As was said, Flyleaf came to town to open the night’s festivities and to the stage they brought a whole host of cuts from their latest, “Memento Mori,” and did anything but disappoint. Flyleaf is quickly becoming one of the best bands to catch live in rock music, due to the sheer passion and raw energy they exude while the lights are on bright. Literally, they are one of the few bands that truly channel the emotion of their own music through their stage antics, causing them to be all over the place onstage. They did dip into the reserves so to speak as well and pull some classics out of the hat, songs from their eponymous debut record, and aside from probably Three Days Grace, their set list was the best of the night. And keep in mind, they were just the opening third of the night.

After what seemed like a lengthy break, Chevelle took the stage, and while they were good live – this was the first time I’d ever seen them since the last time I was supposed to see them (Ozzfest), they didn’t even play – I did have some gripes with their show. Nothing major, but still - like the crowd itself. It was easy to see that the people in attendance wanted to see one band and one band only – Three Days Grace. Sure, I get that, but still, this is freaking Chevelle. The crowd was lackluster but the trio onstage couldn’t help that, but what they could help was their set list. I was almost certain they’d open with ‘Comfortable Liar,’ but they didn’t, and I was semi-soured on their set from there on in. Regardless, they moved through song after song that have graced radio waves at one time or another, tracks like ‘Anti-Saint,’ ‘the Red,’ ‘Send the Pain Below,’ ‘the Clincher,’ ‘Jars’ and ‘Well Enough Alone,’ before ending their time in Erie with the song ‘I Get It.’ I thought the set list could have been much better, but beggars can’t be choosers as they say. I mean, I’d probably never be satisfied with them since their “Point #1” record is my favorite of their discography, and chances are I won’t be hearing ‘Open,’ ‘Mia’ or ‘Blank Earth’ off of it anytime soon. Still though, solid set from a band that I can now cross off my concert list, and one I hope to cross paths with again very soon.

“I think nowadays a lot of bands get up on stage and take their fans for granted,” said Three Days Grace frontman Adam Gontier. “And that’s just not right. Three Days Grace is not one of those bands because if it weren’t for you, we would not exist.”

That sentiment rang true throughout the bands set as they came out to cap things off, and they really did not hold anything back. Anyone that knows me knows that I am obsessed with live music, and I love energy on stage. I also believe that 3DG are one of the top three live acts in the business today and on this night in Erie, they showed they might be a better fit at number one. The took right to new material off their latest, “Life Starts Now,” opening their set with singles ‘Break’ and ‘the Good Life,’ before sending the crowd into a rousing, singing frenzy by dropping ‘I Hate Everything About You.’ From there, they did not let up as they fired off hit after hit, songs like ‘Bitter Taste,’ ‘Home,’ ‘Goin’ Down,’ ‘Never Too Late’ and ‘Riot,’ with a stunning drum/synth solo from percussionist Neil Sanderson dropped in as well. At one point in the show the lights were cut and when they came back up, Gontier reemerged in the middle of the arena for a stirring rendition of ‘I Don’t Care.’ The band then left for a short time, then only Gontier came back out for an acoustic cover of Phil Collins ‘In the Air Tonight,’ then encored for Erie with songs ‘Just Like You’ and ‘Pain.’

I love seeing 3DG because they are not afraid to play covers even though they have a plethora of hits to choose from. Getting only one cover song was upsetting, but at least it was one I haven’t heard them play before. 3DG was unbelievable, just as I had expected, and they are really one of the only bands I could watch night in and night out, regardless of who they were playing with – they are just that good while up on stage.

If you haven’t yet, please do yourself a solid and head to their website, MySpace, what have you, and look for a date near you.