THRICE are making their long-awaited return to Australia for their first headline tour in over a decade in February 2019. Throughout their 20-year career, THRICE have remained committed to pushing creative boundaries, re-writing the rule books with each release to become one of the most innovative and ambitious rock bands of their generation.

Returning to Australian shores with their new album Palms in tow, witness one of rock’s most prominent pioneers THRICE in all their glory. THRICE fans can expect to be thrilled as they journey through the breathtaking heights of their unparalleled discography. Hi Fi Way speaks to Riley Breckenridge about the tour.

Ten years feels like a long time between drinks, it’s great that Thrice is finally coming back for an Australian tour, which starts this week.
Yeah, I’m we’re also excited. I mean, it’s long overdue, I think it’s been a decade since we came down there last, and we had a couple other tours scheduled, and some of them fell through because of family emergencies. I think a couple others fell through because of some promoter related issues.

So, we’ve been making an effort to come back down there and it’s just not happened for whatever reason, none of which were in our control and we’ve been super bummed that we haven’t been able to come back down there, since 2008 or 2009. The fact that it’s actually happening now, and god forbid some sort of family emergency pops up in the next twelve days or something, we’re going to make it down there. We’re so, so excited because it’s been high on our priority list for a long time. It’s been outside circumstances that screw it up every time.

What tops this off is that the band will be touring with a relatively brand new album, which is great as well.
Yeah, we’ve got to make up for ten years. I guess when you’ve got three albums we need to show people plus the older stuff that people like, we’ve got our work cut out for us, but I think we’re going to put together a great set. We’re stoked that people are still interested and still supportive especially with the cancellations, moving dates and stuff like that. To have people still excited for us to come down there is awesome and it’s not lost on us at all. We’re very grateful…

Does it make it hard as well trying to fit everything in the set list without playing for five or six hours?
Yeah it’s really hard. It’s hard putting a set together that works well for stateside dates. We’ll play a set during the US tour, even though we’re going to go out again in the states in six months, there’s people like “oh why didn’t you play this, or why did you play this?” It’s hard to keep everybody happy. We’re going to do our best, I think on the plus side, we’ll make it down to Australia soon, so if there’s stuff that we missed on this run, we’ll make sure to make it up on the next run.

How have you found the new songs working in with the live set, has it been fairly seamless?
It’s been pretty seamless, you know there’s always going to be group of your fans that want to hear stuff that was written and recorded fifteen years ago, but you can’t play a full nostalgia set unless you’re doing a tour on a certain album. The challenge is unique for us, I feel that because our sound has changed a lot over the last two decades, and getting a set to feel like it flows well or is not too scatter brained, in twenty or twenty two songs, in an hour-and a half or two hours is a challenge. It’s hard to put blocks of songs together that flow well, but I think we’re finding the best way to do that. I don’t think we’ve found the best way, but we’re constantly trying to figure that out and our sets have been going over well in the States, and in Europe so far, so we hope that it’ll be the same in Australia.

Have you found that the new songs particularity have continued evolving in the live set, compared to how you originally recorded them?
Any song takes on its own life once you get it in front of people, whether its figuring out that it was a little too slow for a live set, we’ve had a few songs where it feels good during the writing  , and it feels good when you’re recording it, and then you get it in front of people and realise that you’re playing it, a few or several beats per minute faster than you would play it in the studio. So we make adjustments there, the studio obviously affords you the ability to add a bunch of different instrumentation that you can’t pull off in a live setting, so we will supplement that either with some samples that I can trigger from behind the drums, or we’ll have a bass or guitar try to figure out maybe a key part on their instrument. The rotation might change from the studio to a live setting, but as we’ve gotten older and had more experience doing that, I think had a knack for knowing how to make stuff translate live.

Did the band approach Palms any differently than any of the other albums that you’ve made?
Ah, no, not really. When we started being more open to using different instruments and approached the writing of every record as anything goes, nothing is too far of a left turn for us to not consider. This one we tried to be open to, maybe a more mellow kind of feeling, a little more mature than prior records. There’s an openness to things, an overarching theme, there’s nothing really driving the direction of this record, it was like write whatever feels good. We’re get in to a room, the four of us, and hash things out and see where stuff ends up, which is the way we’ve done stuff for years. It’s not the most efficient way to do stuff, I guess time wise, but at the end of the day, we all get to a place where we all feel really good about the record.

Has the band thought about what might be the next album or is it too early to even contemplate?
We’ll start thinking about that stuff when we’re in the studio recording the record that we’re working on. I think there’s something about being in the studio, being in that creative head-space for however long it takes to write and record an album. I think you do as much as you can with the song ideas and the songs that you have. When you start recording it the stress starts happening, the album starts to take shape and at the same time the current album is taking shape, you’re always thinking like, oh I am sure the next record we should do this, and do this, and of this, but yeah, we’ve got ideas for the next record both in terms of how we want to record it and instruments we want to use, and themes we want to use. We have a concept for the next record that we want to enact, and thankfully even though we’ve been a band for twenty years, there’s no shortage of ideas, or inspiration, we’re nearing the end of the touring cycle for this record, and we’re already to make the next one. I think we could go into the studio tomorrow, but we’re excited to start writing again.

Interview by Rob Lyon

Catch Thrice on the following dates, tickets through SBM Presents

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