The Return of Third Eye Blind

Third Eye Blind never went away. It just seems that way. A six-year gap between albums is an eternity for a band, especially for one a dozen years between a hit. But that’s Third Eye Blind’s story.      After releasing ‘Out in the Vein’ in 2003, the group shuffled its lineup and toured on occasion but the act slipped out of its rhythm.       “We just lost focus when it came to this group,” drummer Brad Hargreaves said. “We played together. We did our shows but we also worked on different projects. We all knew we would get back to Third Eye Blind. It was just a matter of time.”       The group re-connected in 2008 to record ‘Ursa Major.’ The band, which also includes vocalist-guitarist Stephan Jenkins, bassist Abe Millett and guitarist Kryz Reid, went back to basics and is making pop-rock in the manner of its eponymous album, which included five catchy pieces of ear candy, which charted.        The infectious ‘Semi-Charmed Life, which peaked at #4 on the Billboard Hot 100, ‘Graduate,’ How’s It Going To Be,’ ‘Losing a Whole Year’ and ‘Jumper’ helped change the band’s fortunes dramatically. In just months, Third Eye Blind went from an unknown act playing clubs to an MTV favorite headlining large theaters.       “It was an incredible time for the band,” Hargreaves said. “Everything just seemed to go our way.”      Their next two albums 1999’s ‘Blue and ‘Out in the Vein’ weren’t nearly as successful. ‘Blue’ moved away from the initial album’s cheery, catchy formula. The disc is a serious and somber work, which caught on with diehards but casual fans didn’t embrace the work.        “We felt like it was time to grow and move on to something else,” Hargreaves said. “We evolved.”       But the group has gone full circle with ‘Ursa Major.’ The new tunes are sing-a-long pop confections, which would fit nicely on the act’s breakthrough release.       “We didn’t intentionally try to sound like our early work,” Hargreaves said. “I think what pushed us back there is how we recorded. We went back to recording analog like we did early in our career. We looked forward to capturing ‘Ursa Major’ on tape. That worked out really well. I never really thought how much this album has in common with our first album. I never listened to them back to back.”       Hargreaves won’t listen or practice the hits from the first album. “When Kryz Reid joined us, he said, ‘well, I guess it’s time to rehearse ‘Semi-Charmed Life.’ We told him we weren’t going to do that. He had to learn the song from the record. We love the song but the only time we’ll play it is when we perform live. We’ve played it so many times that we won’t play it when we don’t have to but when we do play it, we have fun with it.”     Count on the act rendering the hit during its ‘Bamboozle Roadshow, which stops Sunday at the Festival Pier. “We’re used to headlining shows,” Hargreaves said. “This is a bit different but we’re enjoying it immensely. It’s a good way for us to start our summer.

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