Atlanta indie rockers Manchester Orchestra followed up their 2014 double release of Cope and its stripped-down companion piece Hope this year with the release of their fifth proper album, A Black Mile to the Surface. The album takes the band further into the soaring, anthemic direction that they’ve become known for, while reaching a new level of cinematic intensity in its themes and its storytelling. It’s been three years since the band last played in the DC area, but their latest tour finally brought them back again to the Fillmore Silver Spring, where they played a long, forceful set to a packed room.
On Wednesday night, Dustin Kensrue of post-hardcore band Thrice and Andy Hull of indie rock band Manchester Orchestra brought their co-headlining solo tour to Sixth & I, in a format very similar to that followed by Kevin Devine and Evan Weiss earlier this year. Each played a solo set, accompanied by only by his own acoustic guitar. As with that previous show, the synagogue turned out to be the perfect setting for such an intimate performance, giving the artists the chance to showcase their strong vocal talents and songwriting away from the much noisier surroundings of their respective bands.
Although Thirce announced a return from an extended hiatus earlier this year, with appearances set for several festivals throughout the summer, Kensrue also released his second solo album, Carry the Fire, two weeks ago. Much like his earlier solo work, 2007’s Please Come Home, the new record is a departure from the heavier sound of Thrice, venturing in pop and folk directions, which lent itself well to the solo acoustic format.