Entertainment: M-A Battle of the Bands 2014
Mirroring the traditional “Battle of the Bands” concept as seen in concerts like the Vans Warped Tour or in movies like School of Rock, for the past several years, M-A’s rendition of the event allows aspiring musicians to compete with and battle each other for the title of the “best band.”
The contestants, in order of appearance, were:
The Band Geeks featuring Caroline Hodes, Amelia Tiemann, Sarah Tiemann, Liviera Leebong, Kate Rumann, and Eliza Fitz
Pink Power featuring Madeleine Baier, Alec Witham, Andreas Ralston, and Daniel Propp
Taken with No Flash featuring Elton Rosiki, Adam Weiss, Kasra Sheik, and Jason McGee
Amigos featuring Jackson Confer and Brett McBride
Tangerinos featuring Dylan Esperance, Lukas McKay, Chris Macrae, and David Turner
Reckless Flesh featuring Steffan Salas, Julian Salas, Surya Thekkath, and Mario Diaz
This year, the Battle of the Bands was judged by teachers John McBlair and Ana Ventura along with the winner of last year’s battle, Jon Moratoya of the VY Kings.
After serious deliberation, the judges announced Reckless Flesh as the winner. According to one of the fans, junior Eliza Gutierrez-Dewar, “the Tangerinos did a great job at getting people to get up and dance, but Reckless Flesh really got everyone pumped.”
The involvement of the crowd was one of the deciding factors of the the band’s victory because the band engaged the entire crowd and “regardless of the type of music that was being played and whether you enjoyed metal or not, the energy they exuded was intoxicating,” junior Zoe Hafter-Manza said after watching Reckless Flesh’s riveting performance.
The thrash band’s representative, Steffan Salas said, “the overall experience of being able to add variety and bring something new to the event was really satisfying because by the end of the performance, it was not even about the music that was being played. It was about how it was being played and the effect it had on everyone listening and participating.”
Salas explained that he and his band have been playing metal shows all across the Bay Area, but what made this event special “was to come into a completely new and untouched environment and be able to give people a new outlook on the potential of live performance in regards to our version of live music.”
However, his favorite part of the show was “being able to see kids and adults smiling and being entertained, even though some of them did not necessarily listen to or enjoy our specific style of music. It was the energy that we and the awesome kids in the crowd brought forth that was exciting.”
Overall, according to event organizer Alex Thayer, “the battle was a huge success. There was a solid turnout, and the energy was calm and very fun.” Attendee Hafter-Manza referred to it as “a perfect movie about high school – everyone was dancing with each other and cheering for every performer. It was really magical to see all that talent and all that support for our students.”