A night of moshing, meshing and rocking

Bradly Gill
Staff Writer

   Several bands took the stage Oct. 28 for Pi Kappa Delta’s and the UAM Debate Society’s second annual Battle of the Bands. For one night, the Gibson Fine Arts Center provided the center stage for some of the best and brightest local talent Monticello has to offer.

Photo by Amanda Haught
In the membrane? — Halfway to Insanity won the Battle of the Bands with its mixture of RapRock and Heavy Metal. Members include (from left) Wesly Hammons,, Seth Hill and Robert Jesse Wells; second row (from left)  includes Jared Walters and Coby Deshazo.
   Guest emcee Richard Moore hosted the evening, while John Dumas, Jason Camden and Paul Beckhart judged the Battle of the Voices. Audience members were informed at the top of the show that they would later decide the winner via voting.

   Word Of Mouth took the stage first. Their set consisted of two Better than Ezra covers and an original song entitled "Turn Around." The crowd involvement was minimal, but considering the night had just started, it could hardly be blamed on the band. At this point, the first of several re-occurring mosh pits spontaneously arose in the area between the seats and the stage.

   After the band left the stage, the Battle of the Voices began with Randa Pruitt belting out an incredible version of "Amazing Grace" accompanied by congas and an acoustic guitar. This combination of a band followed by a vocalist was the norm for the rest of the night.

   Diversity took the stage next. Unlike the other predominantly rock bands performing, Diversity surprised the crowd by playing jazz and R&B. The crowd really came alive at this point and stayed electrified for the rest of the evening. Unfortunately, Diversity was later disqualified for staying on stage longer than the allotted time.

   It’s Not About, a mixture of Punk and Alternative, followed as the next featured band. After a rather interesting version of Bush’s "Everything Zen," the crowd was told that moshing would not be allowed, bringing an end to the antics of the front-row rock warriors.

   The only band to feature a female lead performed after intermission. Tower can best be described as Fiona Apple goes hardcore. Despite some stage effects like a smoke machine that only managed to blow a dismal amount of fog and a strobe light you could see reflected off the drum, Tower’s stage presence was very impressive and it was interesting to see a female rocking out.

   Finally, Halfway to Insanity performed. The band that would eventually win this year’s competition featured two lead singers and a style mixing the popular RapRock genre and Heavy Metal. When their last song finished, the audience was free to vote for their favorite band.

   When asked about the Battle of the Bands, debate society member Chad Rogers commented, “It’s a unique opportunity of the debate society to become more involved in campus life and promote happy student togetherness.”

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