The smoke was a little thick after five bands burned off their best stuff for the UNBC Battle of the Bands. Each one had a three-song set to work with and a panel of student judges to impress. The five bands were After Dinner Pinners, Floored, Lucas Blind, King’s Inc. and Disdain. Some are new to the scene while groups like King’s Inc. and Disdain are established local acts. It was a clash of the rock titans.
“It was a huge turn-out, I was really impressed. It was pretty packed and the best turn-out we’ve had,” says April Hawes, general manager / programs co-ordinator for the Northern Undergraduate Student Society. NUGGS puts on a battle of the bands each year to determine who will open for their massive Northern Backyard BBQ next fall. It is a coveted slot. The Backyard BBQ has hosted such luminous acts as The Watchmen, 5440, Big Sugar, Junkhouse, Default, Bif Naked, Great Big Sea and Nickelback, among many others.
The winner of this year’s battle is Floored. The local five-piece band is a concoction of heavy rock with turntable action. It is their first big stroke of success and will give them some momentum leading up to Backyard BBQ Eight in September.
“We won another (battle of the bands), the Fly V Tour one in summer, but we got nothing out of it,” says Jeremy Breaks, guitarist for Floored. Things were looking up for the group after the Flying V win because part of the prize was opening for the five-band festival at all six B.C. shows, but it didn’t work out that way. “It was pathetic, the promotion of it, and they canceled it before the Vancouver show so we only got to play in Prince George for a few friends, basically. The Backyard BBQ is something we’re really looking forward too and it’s a ways away so we should be much better by then.”
Part of that process is a concert this week at The Metro. They are headlining a Monday night gig with Talk Texas of Vanderhoof on January 28. It is the first fruits of reward after such an acclaimed set at the battle of the bands.
“A lot of people we didn’t know went hard for us, so that felt good it was a good night,” Jeremy says. “That’s the whole goal in music. We got a great reaction. We’ve worked hard over the past year, and that was the first time we’d seen other people really like our stuff. It gave us the hope that maybe other people in Canada would like our music. That’s why we want to go on a two-week tour in spring.”
They are also in the works on their first indie CD. Some tracks are already laid down and it will be the bulk of their band efforts over the next couple of months. It won’t be easy to record, because of the complexity of the band’s sound (turntables typically add a degree of difficulty but also a layer of pleasure), but it is being done in the band’s rehearsal space where they can take their time to do it right. It is a comfortable environment for them.
Floored is: Jeremy Breaks on guitar, Michael Vanderlans on bass, Scotty Dunbar on vocals, Cory Roderick on drums and DJ Weasel scratching vinyl. Catch them live on January 28 at The Metro.