Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Band of the Week Q&A: Dustin Kensrue talks touring and industry evolution


In 1998, a high-school-aged Dustin Kensrue founded the rock band Thrice with bandmate Teppei Terrenishi. Since then, his music has been labeled everything from hardcore, to alternative and Christian in his solo endeavors. His journey through the music industry has led him to his current tour with Manchester Orchestra members Andy Hull and Gobotron. Their tour will be stopping at the Saturn in Birmingham on Saturday. We talked with Kensrue about touring and his evolution as an artist.

You started Thrice when you were very young. How has your growth as a person affected your evolution as an artist?

The two things are kind of inseparable in any kind of art. I mean, anything you’re going through will indirectly affect what you’re doing and a lot of the time, directly. When you are producing something personal and something amazing or devastating happens, there is really no way to keep that out of your work.

Over your nearly two decades in the music industry, what are some of the biggest changes you’ve noticed?

I mean, something that has changed a lot is that technology has advanced to where it is easier for people to create their own music without big budgets or big recording studios. Just the power of being able to have something like Garage Band and other softwares has replaced the need to have a big four track recorder or something like. It has opened up a lot of doors or start-ups to do a lot more with a lot less. We’ve been able to self-produce some of our records and self-record without a big studio. Really the biggest thing is just being able to create our own music.

In what ways do you feel that your solo work differentiates from your work with Thrice?

The solo stuff mostly exists because I don’t feel like it is stuff that would work with Thrice in the first place. The material is a bit more on the americana side of rock. It is just stuff that I really like, but isn’t what’s at the core of what Thrice does. I think with my solo stuff I have a different voice lyrically as well. It is more colloquial and poetic.

Your most recent solo album, “Thoughts That Float on a Different Blood,” is composed of covers of popular music. That being said, do you have a favorite song to cover live?

Yeah that is kind of the purpose of that record. A lot of those songs are ones that I’ve enjoyed covering over the years. Some of them are newer songs, but a lot of them are just some of my favorites to cover over the past 10 or 15 years.

What are some things you’ve enjoyed most about touring in the Southeast with Andy Hull and Gobotron?

Well it is just day two right now, so we haven’t gone too far. So far it has been a blast, though. I really enjoy hanging out with those guys and really enjoy getting to watch them perform. It is always fun to pack in a van, especially with people you don’t get to see all the time, and see how they look at things and approach things. It is a learning experience to look at things outside of my own comfortable way of thinking.

What kind of things can the audience expect at the show tomorrow night?

Something unique.I really think there is something really unique about seeing a show that is so stripped down. There is an intimacy about having those light and fun moments of interaction with the crowd. There is also something unique about the communal aspect of it which I personally enjoy a lot. When it is just one guy with an acoustic guitar and a microphone and you can hear a pin drop at times, there is a unique feeling there that you just don’t get with a full band.

Tickets for Dustin Kensrue’s show tomorrow night with Andy Hull and Gobotron at the Saturn are available at Doors open at 7:30 p.m. with the show starting at 8:30 p.m.

More to Discover