Headlining and in their stomping grounds… A band couldn’t ask for anything better. You get to see all your friends that you’ve been missing on tour and you get to watch your music take complete control over the people who have supported you since the beginning. Homecourt advantage goes a long way and this night definitely proved that to anyone in the building.

The night started out for me with Portugal. The Man. I first saw these cats open up for one of my other favorite bands, Thursday. Their stage show is just as amazing as their sound. Their setup consisted of very dramatic lighting effects synced to their songs. They have a great bluesy soul sound that I totally dig (very Led Zeppelin at times). Matt Embree jumped on stage to jam out a bit and give the fans an added treat. The stage was VERY dark for most of their set so it made it difficult to photograph. The only thing I can say is to catch them if they pass through your town because it’s totally worth it to see.

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Before Left Bamboozle, the last time I saw RX Bandits was when they opened up for another group (who are huge on radio and MTV now, by the way). I was in a sold-out venue surrounded by people with “hurry up and finish” written all over their faces. I’ve never had to fight so hard to get to the center of a crowd but that’s where the core of the RXB fans were. I got a lot of dirty looks from people who obviously don’t go to shows a lot and don’t understand that sometimes people really are there to see the openers. “Excuse me” as I tried to get through wasn’t enough. Part of me feels bad but I actually had to push my way through to get to some like-minded audience members.

Thank goodness this wasn’t the case this night! Although it wasn’t a sold-out show, the energy rivaled that of the show I just described (and I’m talking about headliner to headliner!). So Cal is home to RX Bandits and everyone in attendance definintely gave them the welcome they deserved.

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There’s an old saying that roughly says jazz is a music style that is best appreciated when experienced live. Sharing the improvisational nature of jazz, the same can be said about RX Bandits. Most if not all the songs were changed up somehow by adding drum-offs, crowd sing-a-longs, extended interludes, and just all out jamming.

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RX Bandits is a very tight-knit group and this comes off in their musical performance huddling together around the drum set and then exploding with a burst of energy to the audience. It makes for a truly amazing live performance that gets everyone excited to see what happens next.

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This band is amazing and they deserve a lot more credit and recognition for putting on amazing shows and demonstrating some serious skills. A look at their Myspace reveals the headline “We have the best fans in the world.” It’s easy for us fans to get excited when it’s for a band that’s as great as RXB… keep up the awesome work guys! Thanks to Chase and Cathy at Sargent House. You guys are great, too!

(I made a new photo buddy, Bryan, while shooting the show. Check out his site because he has some amazing photos to show you: http://allnarfedup.com)

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All of my pictures from the night are available for viewing by clicking here. ENJOY!