The Counting Crows and Dashboard Confessional. A pairing that when said out loud seems a bit odd. The Counting Crows came on to the scene in 1993 with the smash debut album August And Everything After and ruled the radio and MTV. Dashboard Confessional kicked us right in the feels and filled our iPods in 2000 with the The Swiss Army Romance. The bands deal with the same type of subject matter. The Counting Crows’ lead singer Adam Duritz's iconic voice spins atmospheric and poetic tales of yearning, pain, regret, and redemption. Dashboard’s frontman Chris Carrabba vulnerably belts out the same tales but with a rawer delivery and for a different generation.
The hellishly hot temperatures of the day began to fade and the sun was setting on Credit One Stadium in Charleston South Carolina. Dashboard Confessional, made up of Chris Carrabba (lead singer), Abigail Kelly (backing vocals), Armon Jay (lead guitar) , Scott Schoenbeck (bass), Kenny Bridges (guitar, piano, keyboards), and Chris Kamrada (drums), took the stage. Chris struck the instantly recognisable first chords to “The Sharp Hint of New Tears” from their timeless debut album Swiss Army Romance (2000). When they rolled into “Saints and Sailors”, the massive crowd roared in excitement over the hit off of Dashboard's sophomore album The Places You Have Come to Fear the Most (2001). Scott whipped his hair and his bass around, Kenny worked magic on the keys and leapt from his platform, and Abigail elevated each song with her angelic backing vocals. Next up was the powerful song “Burning Heart” from their latest release All The Truth That I Can Tell (2022). A real singalong began when the crowd favorite off of The Places You Have Come to Fear the Most (2001), “Screaming Infidelities", echoed through the circular venue, the legendary post break-up song that we have at all one time sang at the top of our lungs. The album Dusk And Summer (2006) was not to be forgotten. The emo anthem “Vindicated” amped up the audience and had them demanding more. “Hands Down” from A Mark, A Mission, A Brand, A Scar (2003) closed out their set with a bang.
Counting Crows (Adam Duritz (lead vocals), David Bryson (guitar), Charlie Gillingham (keyboards), David Immerglück (guitar), Millard Powers (bass), Dan Vickrey (guitar), Jim Bogios (drums)) started their set off with a very different vibe.
Gillingham's keyboard led the way for Duritz’s signature vocals on “Sullivan Street'' from the Crows' debut album August And Everything After (1993). David Bryson’s and David Immerglück’s guitar licks on “Come Around” from Saturday Nights & Sunday Mornings (2008) helped the crowd wake up from their post-intermission daze and got everyone to their feet. They wasted no time getting to the song from their debut album that started it all, “Mr.Jones”, and the crowd thanked them with glorious applause. The stadium vibrated with the sound of thousands of fans singing in unison to a song that OWNED the 90’s. For two hours, the Crows gripped the crowd with their catalog that spans from 1993 to 2021. The audience was completely engaged during the song “Round Here”. Adam delivered each word like a poet and everyone sang along with clear, but absolutely different, reasons from one another. It's just one of the songs everyone knows and has a personal memory associated with it. The same could be said about the closing song “A Long December” from Recovering The Satellites (1996). A song that could have you feeling the winter blues even on the sunny streets of Los Angeles in the dead of summer. We’ve all had a “Long December” once or twice, and we’ve all hoped that “next year would be better than the last”.