Friday the 12th of August was a big night for six unsigned Adelaide bands. With a great vibe in the air and a crowd that spilled onto the street, the bands were hitting the stage to battle it out for some hard-to-come-by studio time with Keep It Real’ Recording Studio.
In order to get local bands out in front of a real crowd and earn themselves something tangible for their efforts, Keep It Real’ Recording Studio teamed up with Global Music Revolution to host a ‘battle of the bands’ competition. After a series of heats, six finalists were identified for the grand final: The East District, Somnium, RedHeart, Tympano, Burning Tongue and Radix.
The finalists were to be judged on certain criteria, such as: originality, unity and ability on stage, entertainment value and crowd response—though studio owner, Tom was quick to point out that the “band who brought the biggest crowd won’t necessarily win.” And in charge of deciding which band would take out first place was judges: Jimi James Alevi, Scott Hunter, Tom Burgess, Dino and Christian Broome.
The East District was first off the block, playing original and bass-heavy alternative rock to the seemingly shy crowd. They were fantastic—being first is always the hardest and they set the bar high.
Somnium were the second band on stage. Recently, they’ve been playing to quite large crowds and it shows—their performance was tight, with clear changes in tempo and tune. These guys were the dark horse of the evening, playing slow, chaotic and strange melodies that contrasted heavily with the rest of the bands competing.
With the crowd well-warmed up, RedHeart gave a very strong show—extra credit to their drummer and bassist. Producing a grunge-vibing-rock sound, RedHeart performed very well despite an issue with the on-stage sound balance with the bass. The crowd would never have noticed if they hadn’t stopped, which is a good indication of their talent.
Cheered before they even got on stage, Tympano were clearly favourites to begin with. A rock band with a very professional set up, their die-hard fans were at the front getting the rest of the crowd pumped up for the performance. They displayed a good genre variability which most likely has come from their diverse taste in music.
Burning Tongue followed on from Tympano’s performance with a rock ‘n’ rollin’ show like no other that night. This band already knows how to fill a stage and get that crowd participation—they can only go upwards from here. These guys were solid competition from the get-go.
In the end it was Radix who came out on top, thanks to a well-executed show that even included an encore of a song they hadn’t got around to naming yet. They were clear favourites from the beginning, but it was soon clear why; they were tight, they had the crowd going from the start and they didn’t forget to be humbled by the experience. And there were at least five people seated on the thrones of others’ shoulders by the end.
Although only one band took home the prize, Global Music Revolution and Keep It Real’ garnered enough interest to kick start the careers of all six bands. There’s much potential to be found in Adelaide and these guys are on the right track to help discover and nurture it.
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Photos: Pepper Photography