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About 350 people filled Dunedin's Coronation Hall for the one-off show and live album release which frontman Martin Phillipps called "great fun".
Rockers young and old, and everywhere in between, relished the opportunity to see the 33rd version of the band (Phillipps, James Dickson, Todd Knudson, Erica Stichbury and Oli Wilson) make way for the first (Phillipps, Jane Dodd, Rachel Devereux [nee Phillipps], Alan Haig and Peter Gutteridge) to once again take the stage.
It may have been 30 years on, in the same hall, but band manager Scott Muir said the original group "sounded great" and he was "very happy" with how it went.
"It's just the same," he said.
They may look "just slightly different", but musically they "have not gotten any worse; in fact, they have improved".
He and drummer Alan Haig were pleased with the afternoon event, and to see such a diverse range of people there.
"It was a lot of fun. It was so good to get together," Haig said.
The band had just one rehearsal, but it was "just magic" how easily they came together again.
He would not rule out a 40th anniversary reunion, he said.
Flying Nun founder Roger Shepherd may have wished more people danced, but said seeing the original line-up was "special" and "excellent" because they had all gone on to do so many important things.
The Chills also released a special live album featuring the first two rudimentary recordings of Motels and Cars and I Saw Your Silhouette from the 1980 gig, along with some unreleased live tracks.