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The Jungle Giants

The speakers boomed, and the music echoed throughout the venue. The barricade rattled from the sheer force of the crowd jumping as they sang along to every word. The Australian band enraptured New York and the music they poured out onto them.

 

The Jungle Giants are an indie rock band that first started its musical journey in 2011 in Brisbane, Australia. Band members Sam Hales, Cesira Aitken, Andre Dooris, and Keelan Bijker attended the same high school. They eventually came together to create the band we know today: 'The Jungle Giants.' Currently, they have over 1 million monthly listeners on Spotify, with some of their songs accumulating over 30 million streams on the platform. The band is set to play at the 'Laneway' music festival in New Zealand in 2023, but until then, they are currently on their North American tour, 'Love Signs Tour.' The band has sold out a few venues along the way and seems to be taking North America by storm. We had the pleasure of seeing them on one of their tour dates here in New York last Saturday.


 

Fans lined up a few hours before doors opened at Warsaw in Brooklyn to see the band perform. As the time for doors to open got closer, the line grew longer and longer. Slowly, fans were let into the venue, and the adrenaline seemed to kick in as each one secured their spot on the barricade.

 

Tim Atlas, a band originally from the city of Brooklyn, opened up the show. Lead singer Timothy Atlas is accompanied by his bandmates Zach Para and Alexina Boudreaux; they warmed the crowd up, playing songs that would make anyone dance because of how intoxicating each beat was in your ears. After an unforgettable opening set, Tim thanked the crowd and expressed how happy he was to play in his city; the crowd applauded and cheered as the band walked off stage.

As the minutes passed, the fans seemed to be full of anticipation, the room was nearly full, and everyone was watching to see when 'The Jungle Giants' would come out. When the band stepped onto the stage, the room erupted into cheers and applause; they settled in their spots on stage and greeted the crowd that stood in front of them. The crowd's excitement buzzed through the venue and engulfed me like a tidal wave. The band opened the show with their song "On Your Way Down."


When the song ended, Sam Hales pointed to a fan on the barricade, which was holding up a sign. He tells the crowd what he sees; "Is that a picture of us with Guy Fieri?" The band does a bit every show where people bring pictures of Guy Fieri, but this fan went above and beyond and edited a picture of the whole band with Guy Fieri. He thanks them and tells them to meet him after the show to get a handshake and a rose.

With every song that passed, the crowd filled with more and more energy. Andrew Doris bounced around the stage, Cesira Aitkenvery shredded on her guitar, Keelan Bijker was shedding on the drums, and Sam Hales had the crowd entranced with every lyric he sang. The members of the band interacted with the crowd allowing it to be more than just a show but a personal experience.


The Jungle Giants do something unique and personable at their shows; they interact with the crowd in foreign ways and are just so brilliant! The band, during the show, constantly made sure that everyone was having a good time and were having just as much fun as them. A few songs in Sam Hales tell the crowd that they alone are not 'The Jungle Giants'; everyone in the room is a part of 'The Jungle Giants.' With this, he tells the crowd to shake the hand of the person next to them and say, "Hi, welcome to The Jungle Giants." Slowly, fans reached their hand out to their neighbor and repeated the line to them. Sam Hales and Andrew Doris stepped down from the stage into the photo pit to shake hands with fans on the barricade. The room filled with chatter, and the boys climbed back up on stage after they greeted everyone.

This is not the only way they interact with their fans; halfway through the set, Sam tells the crowd that they have a special thing they do at each show. The band throws a disposable camera into the crowd and encourages fans to take a picture and pass it on to someone else. This is a part of their tour project, which is called “The Faces of North America.” They hope to have a collection of pictures of all their beautiful fans by the end of the tour.


The best moment, in my opinion, was when the band played ‘Used to Be in Love’ because it is one of my all-time favorite songs by them. I found myself singing to every lyric and dancing in the back of the pit. While in the back, you could see little groups of friends dancing to the beat of the music. When looking at the crowd, you could see that the band had allowed every single person to feel free of judgment and allow themselves to have a good time. Overall, if you want to attend a show that will have you dancing and singing with personable moments sandwiched in between, The Jungle Giants are a band you have to add to your list of shows to see!

Check out more pictures like this in our vault!



Words and photos by:

Isabella Soares-Sousa

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