Garin College’s Motion takes out Rockquest.

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It was a night to remember for Garin College band Motion, as they took out the Nelson regional final of Smokefree Rockquest on Friday night.

“We’re absolutely chuffed, the boys absolutely outdid themselves,” says the bands front man, Kieran O’Connor.

“What a night, the crowd was fantastic, it’s a night where you just realise it’s why you do music. I’m proud of the boys and very thankful to be where we are right now.”

The four-piece band, including Sotaro Kawada, drums, Caleb Binns, keyboard and Carl Gillan, guitar and vocals, now has the opportunity to compete for the Smokefree Rockquest title in the national final, which will take place in Auckland on Saturday, September 24.

“I was saying to the boys beforehand, you know, let’s just forget about trying to get the awards and go out there and give it our all,” says Kieran.

“We spent a lot of time polishing and critiquing the songs. We just wanted to get up there and play music that lots of people would enjoy.”

The 12 bands vying for the title performed two songs each, in front of a sell-out crowd of 500 at the Theatre Royal, and while the level of talent was certainly high, it was Motion’s “refined sound and hook-driven songs set them apart.”

Seven piece hip-hop crew The Hoard, from Golden Bay High School, will also get a chance at the national title after placing second. Both bands won musical gear from the events sponsor, NZ Rockshops and will now be focusing on creating a 15 minute long recording of their best material, which will be submitted to determine their selection as one of the top 30 national finalists. Joining them from the solo-duo section, will be Cam Dawson from Garin College and Tegan Fisher from Waimea College, whose results were announced at the regional heats.

The People’s choice award, which was done through text, went to Coastal, from Nelson College for Girls, who will now be in the running to open the Smokefree Rockquest national final.