Music » Critics' Picks

The Starting Line

10 a.m. Sunday, September 30. Verizon Wireless Amphitheater, 14141 Riverport Drive, Maryland Heights

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It's a story older than the concept of teen angst. Catchy musical quartet debuts with a bang. Its rushed, moody follow-up bombs. Major label drops band; band never heard from again. Thankfully, this very scenario didn't destroy pop-punk scrappers The Starting Line, whose third effort marks an astonishing bounceback for mastermind Kenny Vasoli. Sunny and optimistic, but yet rife with strikingly mature notions on personal responsibility and the interwoven nature of the universe, July's Direction is a rage — a highly accessible rage, but rage all the same — against the proverbial dying of the light. And if that's what Vasoli and Co. successfully captured in the studio, just imagine the live show from a band bursting with both gratitude and something to prove.

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