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Judging by my typical show reviews it might surprise people to find out that I listen to a wide range of music. I’m pretty open to different genres and that led me to New Zealand’s Katchafire. The great thing about this show is that I got the added bonus of enjoying the band’s performance with the people responsible for introducing me to their music.

By the time Katchafire hit the stage, the night was already off and buzzing. The second I walked into the venue, yells of “CHEEEEEE HOOOOOOOO!” filled the air repeatedly. It was quite a departure from the rock shows I usually attend, but the energy level was the same. The band walked out onto a backlit stage and stood there for a few seconds while the audience went wild. Through the shadows you could make out their smiles as they soaked in the energy. Just when it seemed the audience couldn’t take it anymore, Katchafire launched into what would be about an hour and a half of smooth, roots reggae.

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While the band was obviously making an effort to concentrate on what they were playing, they didn’t forget to engage the crowd. They hit every note perfectly and still managed to encourage fans to dance and sing along. Whether it was grooving around on stage or simply looking up wide-eyed into the balconies, the crowd read the band’s body language and responded appropriately. This created one of the most harmonious show environments I’ve ever been in. Bodies never stopped swaying and voices were united and strong throughout the show (and for once, everyone was singing on key!). Katchafire’s Bob Marley covers even had some of the security guards singing along!

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Katchafire put on an amazing show. You can tell by their smiles that they were having a great time on stage. Their music hits deep and fans were having a great time hearing all their favorites. I witnessed smiles grow wider and couples hold each other tighter when certain songs came up. It was a very happy and loving environment and I can’t wait for another chance to see Katchafire so I can be a part of that again.

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Big thanks to Carole and Logan for allowing me to shoot the set. Thanks to HOB staff for being cool. What’s up to all of Carson who made it out to the show. Happy birthday to Elieser — your enthusiasm is the reason I heard of Katchafire in the first place.