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  The Offerings Experience
Artist: Third Day
Label: Essential
Length: VHS 75 Minutes/ DVD 75 Minutes plus over 60 minutes of extra footage

It was a historic evening for Atlanta-based rockers Third Day when they sold out the 15,000 seat Hi-Fi
Buys Amphitheatre on a very special night of their “Offerings” tour. Although Third Day can whip even a small number fans into a frenzy, having a packed house gave them some extra leverage while delivering a mix of greatest hits and praise standards during the unforgettable performance.

And thanks to a special DVD/VHS preservation of the set, attendees will forever have a record of a set that surely touched them deeply. Even for those who didn’t make it out that particular night will see an accurate and enjoyable portrayal of what they missed. The Offerings Experience is not just a straight through run of the concert, kicking off with the explosive “Took My Place” and hitting several emotional highs along the way. Instead, fans are able to see what the members of Third Day experience every day on the road, thanks to numerous documentary segments. Such scenes are interspersed throughout the songs, including a behind the scenes look at roadies setting up the show, a peek inside the band’s tour bus, and some explanations of the instruments featured on stage during the concert.

As effective and informative as the documentary portions are, it would have been more advantageous for the band to edit them all together and place them at the beginning of the film to build up hype for the forthcoming spectacle. Instead, they break up some of the band’s momentum on stage, fading out from an electric song (like “Consuming Fire”) into interview segments.

Regardless, the group shined on fan favorites “My Hope is You,” “King of Glory,” and “I’ve Always Loved You,” while slowing things down for the meditative encores “Angus Dei” and “I Have Decided to Follow Jesus.” It’s too bad that the film had to include lead singer Mac Powell’s World Vision pitch after the moving finale, but at least it was edited to commercial length, rather than the extensive push he normally makes from the stage, known for bringing the group’s fire to a screeching halt. For VHS viewers, the buck stops there, but DVD owners will enjoy another hour’s worth of exclusive footage. I’d go with the latter version for a few dollars more, especially given the fact that you’ll get to skip songs or documentary segments and mix up the track order. Either way, you’ll like what you see for the most part, and may even be enticed to go buy a ticket of your own to Third Day’s current “Come Together” tour. 

Andy Argyrakis 3/24/2002


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