Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Viva La Battle Preview!!

TOMORROW NIGHT marks the first Sault Ontario battle of the bands in 7 months, as four local bands will gather at The Canadian Nightclub for Viva La Battle, with an opening slot at the Bam Margera/Fuckface Unstoppable concert on December 14th on the line, so here's our extended preview of it! The first battle to take place at this central venue since the Kiss Battle almost 4 years ago, this will also mark the first metal-featured concert at The Canadian since their most recent post-flood renovations, and this is a nice way to return to normal on the concert front! Similarly to last June's Battle For The Blood, promoter J.D. Pearce is hosting this battle to fill the last opening slot for the aforementioned Bam Margera show next month, with the winners joining Fuckface Unstoppable, Wilson, and local openers Destroilet & Jack Spades on the bill. Like the Battle For The Blood, the winners will be chosen by a fan ballot, with all paid fans recieving a ballot to vote on at the door upon entry. After everyone wraps up, you can vote and submit your ballot, and the winner will be announced at the end of the night (no announced prizes for runners-up though), so keep all of that in mind!

Note however that unlike T-Rex Manning last year, there is not an announced non-competitive band scheduled to play tomorrow night. Performance order for the 4 bands will be determined tomorrow one hour before showtime, and each band has a 30 minute set to rock fans with. Like March 2009's YMCA Battle, this will be a good showcase for new bands, with 3 of the 4 making their debut at a live public venue tomorrow night, but there's some battle veterans in each band that will be aiming to win tomorrow night, so let's run through each in alphabetical order:

The Bear Hunters: By far the most experienced and well known of the competitors, local death metal quartet The Bear Hunters will look to continue their gradual improvement in their third local battle tomorrow night, following their 5th place finish at April's Rockstar Bar Battle. Though this will be their first battle as a quartet due to Josh Stephney's move, they're guaranteed a higher finish thanks to the lower band count tomorrow, but is first place finally in the cards for this brutal local band, and can guitarist Mitch Sirie's victory at the Rockstar Bar Battle with The Suicide Kings be beneficial?

Keep It Lit: Similarly to the now-defunct Sarah's Valley at the Rockstar Bar Battle, new local band Keep It Lit are intentionally going into tomorrow's battle as a "secret band", with no online page or public indications of their lineup & sound until showtime. Unlike Sarah's Valley though, I do know their lineup & genre, and while I'll respect the secrecy for now, I will confirm that their lineup features two local battle veterans who have both had runner-up finishes in the last 4 years. Will Keep It Lit hit the top of the votes in their debut tomorrow?

North West: Though they debuted on Halloween at a Oh! Right Arm!-promoted house party, this will be North West's first truly public live appearance. Currently sans an online page themselves, their lineup does feature recent solo acoustic favourite Greg Callaghan (who competed at 2008's Skid Row Battle with Terminal) and (I believe) Small Town Rivals bassist Mike Smykacz, which seems to point to an indie/alternative punk sound, but I've struggled to find out much else, including the identity of their other two members. We'll learn more soon hopefully, but will North West take the stage by storm tomorrow night?

Punch: An intriguing union of the top 2 bands from April's Rockstar Bar Battle, Punch sees Suicide Kings guitarist Steven Flint (moving to bass) and drummer Ben Boudreau aligning with Haggith singer Curtis McKenzie and guitarist Daniel Horton for what should be an anticipated debut set! It remains to be seen how they sound (or if they have original songs yet), but their members have had a lot of recent success both in concerts and at battles of the bands, so they're not to be overlooked! Will Punch "punch" their ticket for the Bam Margera show at tomorrow's battle?

Remember as well that the aforementioned Suicide Kings were replaced on the lineup by Punch, so they will not be defending their battle crown tomorrow, but they are still together, so stay tuned for updates from them! Though only 1 band tomorrow has extensive local familiarity, do not bypass the new bands! Both Sense of Truth and The Undead Warriors (later Bring The Fallen) won local battles in their live concert debuts in the late 2000s, and if they can do it, one of tomorrow's new bands can as well! Admission is $5 tomorrow night, you must be 19 to attend, there's an announced 9:00 PM start time, and as stated above, your admission will get you a judging ballot to help pick the winners (and an draw entry for a Destroilet/Jack Spades prize pack!) For more details, check the Facebook event page! It's great to have another local battle of the bands tomorrow night, and with a bunch of new (but often familiar) talent in store, you won't wanna miss out! The fan vote should be interesting to hear the results from, especially given the unknown variables of the new bands, so make sure to come to Viva La Battle TOMORROW NIGHT to help pick the winners!

Will the third time be the charm for The Bear Hunters at local battle of the bands, or can Keep It Lit, North West, or Punch debut with a bang and earn the right to open for Bam Margera? I'm very curious to find out, and I'll definitely be there tomorrow night to help pick the winners and see the bands in action! I won't post a preview video just to avoid showing bias (even if The Bear Hunters are the only band with a video), but I'll see you guys at The Canadian tomorrow night! Thanks everyone!

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