NU hosts 4th annual High School Band Showcase
Niagara University's Battle of the Bands provides young musicians with the opportunity to showcase their talent and compete with other local bands. Sponsored by Lewiston Music, NU hosted this fourth annual event as a part of its Live Music Series.
Four bands from various high schools in the region performed Friday night, all competing for the grand prize. The winning band would be awarded a $500 gift certificate to Lewiston Music, an opening slot in next year's Live Music Series at NU, and a guaranteed spot in this year's Music is Art Festival “ an annual event in Buffalo that features live music, dance, art exhibitions and more.
Each band played a 20-minute set and was judged based on four categories: originality, appearance, talent and audience response.
The judge's panel consisted of Tony Petrocelli, local musician and owner of Lewiston Music; Jennifer Pauly, violin teacher at Lewiston Music and president of the Niagara River Region Chamber of Commerce; and Tod Knaizuk, executive director of Music is Art.
The first band to perform, RePerfection, consisted of five students from Lewiston-Porter High School and named Metallica and Rise Against as two of its influences. The band played three original songs that could easily fit into the heavy metal genre.
The second band, Wit, hailed from Kenmore East High School and performed cover songs from Green Day and Blink -182, as well as one original song.
Also from Lewiston-Porter High School, Casual Affair was the third band to perform and played an entirely original set, naming the Goo Goo Dolls as one of its greatest influences.
The fourth and final band, The Raven, contained three members from Niagara Catholic and Niagara-Wheatfield high schools. The band's talent, natural humor and successful attempts to get the audience to clap their hands and bob their heads along with the music set them apart from the competition.
After a performance from last year's winner of NU's High School Band Showcase, The Brass Monkeez, the winner was announced.
The Raven took home first prize for its original songs and unique sound, as well as their professional appearance and audience engagement.
The band now has at least two more performances lined up “ one at next year's Live Music Series and the other at the Music is Art festival “ and a good chunk of change to spend at Lewiston Music.
Although the main purpose of the evening was to win Battle of the Bands, all of the participating bands showed genuine support for their competitors and appeared to have a good time simply playing music.