The Night That Rekindled The Flame

WOW WHAT A TRIP THIS WAS....

When I first boarded my flight to Vancouver the day before I had no idea I would be experiencing one of the most influential nights of my career to date on this trip. The day got off to an... interesting start. After sleeping in a room reeking of cigarette smoke, when I booked a smoking free floor no less, I got woken up by a complete stranger barging into my room at 7am. That was enough for me to pack up, check out, and get the hell out of that hotel. I really hoped this wasn't a sign of how the rest of day was going to go...

But that couldn't have been further from the actual events. After refocusing by enjoying a morning coffee and relaxing on a beach Stanley Park for a couple hours I made my way down town closer to the venue. Just for kicks I sent a message on Twitter to Northlane and Intervals tour photographer, Kurt Cuffy, asking if he was around to see if we could talk shop, get tips of the trade and all that. For some background, I've been following Kurt for a couple years and I've been heavily influenced in the style he brought to capturing live performance. Anyways back to the story -  Kurt got back to me almost instantly and told me to come on down to the venue. I made my way there was greeted by him at the band entrance at the back. We end up going to his dressing room and we just talk for a good hour or so. Everything from how we both got started doing this, how he gets his tours booked, what gear we use, how to grow your businesses, etc.. It REALLY got my wheels turning. I came away from that chat with tons of ideas and inspiration on how to achieve my goals. It was time time to get to work I told myself...

After that discussion came the time where I tried not to fanboy too hard. I ended up meeting all of the musicians in all of the bands just by hanging with Kurt. They happened to come by the dressing room, or we met just around the Venue. I had the chance to watch Intervals play brand new, unreleased songs at soundcheck. I thought to myself, "What even is my life right now?", This was SO COOL. After Intervals sound checked I met all of the guys and I was too starstruck to speak for a second but I finally got it together without making a fool of myself. But that was just the start of the fun that was supposed to come...

Fast forward a few hours and it was just about time to do my thing. With this renewed sense of inspiration I was ready to give it my all. Invent, Animate kicked off the night with a killer set. I had three songs to nail the shots I needed and I could feel right from the first few shots that tonight was going to my night to shine with a camera. Everything felt locked in and I was so happy. The boys from Texas rocked The Vogue Theatre with their unique brand of Progressive Metalcore. They were giving it to the crowd and the crowd was giving it back. It made for some killer shots! 

Keaton Goldwire - Invent, Animate

Keaton Goldwire - Invent, Animate

Next up was Intervals. They were the group I was most looking forward to that night. If you're not familiar with them, they're an instrumental progressive rock band from Toronto - the brain child of creative genius and guitarist Aaron Marshall. Their set was filled with a solid mix insane riffs, chill guitar vibes, ridiculous bass lines, and powerful drum grooves. Aaron's enthusiasm to be on stage was insanely contagious. The happiness he showed while playing was palpable and made for some of the best shots I've ever captured. After I finished my couple songs from the photography pit I got to head up to the front of the overhanging balcony and take in the rest of their set. The rest of set was a combo of fan favourites and brand new songs that were off his upcoming album. I was loving it all. If I died immediately after his set I would've been content with life... 

Aaron Marshall - Intervals

Aaron Marshall - Intervals

Next up came the grand finale, the headliners, straight outta Australia. Northlane brought the house DOWN. Guitarist Jon Deiley got the set started with some ambient and ominous beats that lead into a killer set opener, Paragon. Front man Marcus Bridge came out and absolutely commanded the stage. He was a joy to photograph, even if their lighting set up was mostly back lit.. (,Ծ_Ծ,) .. As the set progressed with serious groove, heavy as f*ck break downs, and unreal riffs I got some unreal photos that incredibly proud of. After my three songs of photography were up I got to sit back at the front row of the balcony and take in the rest of the show and just let it all sink in. What a night. 

Marcus Bridge - Northlane

Marcus Bridge - Northlane

The next day I got home and couldn't wait to go through my shots. As I was going through my shots I managed to achieve the editing aesthetic I was striving for for months. Combine that with some of my best live shots ever and I was one satisfied photographer. When I finished editing that set I knew that my inspiration was back and I was ready more than ever to tackle this crazy life as a photographer.