SAN FRANCISCO — For a band coming from an underground scene, celebrating 20 years of a release is an important moment. For Incubus, it was the perfect reason to go on an extensive tour celebrating the 20th anniversary of its platinum-selling album Make Yourself, bringing the “20 Years of Make Yourself & Beyond” tour to the Masonic on the first of two nights on Tuesday.
The SoCal alt-rockers first screened a 10-minute documentary with footage explaining the importance of the album is for every member, in his own words, and how Make Yourself took shape.
Then Incubus played the album from beginning to end, opening with Mike Einziger’s distorted, funky guitar playing. The band jumped into the late ’90s alt-rock sound of “Privilege” and two cuts that acted as a calm before a storm of distorted choruses: “Nowhere Fast” and “Consequence.”
Frontman Brandon Boyd and his bandmates explored a whole catalog of sounds on songs like “The Warmth.” The songs had calm verses that jumped into intense choruses on “When It Comes” and “Stellar.” Fans sang in unison most of the way.
Incubus has known how to roam between different genres, blending calm and ambient sounds with heavy ones. On the title track, Jose Pasillas II led with drum fills while Chris Kilmore introduced vinyl scratching.
Einzinger played an acoustic guitar on “Drive,” a nod to The Cars’ song of the same name following the untimely death of Ric Ocasek.
This was followed by a totally different sound, with Boyd playing a djembe on “Clean.” The band then jumped into Kilmore’s improv with a DJ solo as an introduction for “Battlestar Scralatchtica,” a song that 20 years ago showed how easily Incubus could flow between nu-metal and funk.
“I Miss You,” one of the last songs from the album, showed a more intimate side to Boyd.
“I know I’ll see you again/ Whether far or soon/ But I need you to know that I care/ And I miss you,” he sang.
That was followed by a slow-paced version of “Pardon Me” and the intense “Out from Under.”
A second set—the “and beyond”— was a quick trip through the singles and successful cuts of the band’s catalog.
Incubus kicked this off with a new single, “Into the Summer.” The band then jumped back 22 years, playing “Vitamin,” from 1997’s S.C.I.E.N.C.E.; and “Sick Sad Little World,” from 2004’s A Crow Left of the Murder.
The mood was radically changed when 2017’s 8 cut “State of the Art” began, switching to poppier sounds. As soon as the band played the first few notes of “Megalomaniac,” fans went wild.
A short encore included the successful “Wish You Were Here,” from 2001’s Morning View.
Dub Trio’s set included an amazing blend of explosive starts and heavy riffs. Bassist Stu Brooks, guitarist DP Holmes and drummer Joe Tomino, wearing a Death T-shirt, opened with “Illegal Dub” and “Jog On,” both from the 2007’s Cool Out and Coexist, followed by “Felicitación,” “Regression Line” and “Not for Nothing,” from 2008’s Another Sound is Dying.
Follow photographer Joaquin Cabello at Instagram.com/joaquinxcabello.