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Former Winner Judges Battle of the Bands

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This year’s Battle of the Bands once again showcased the musical talent of Boys’ and Girls’ Division pupils as four bands each played one cover and one original song for an appreciative audience in the Arts Centre. Old Boy Rob Jones (Class of 2008, School Captain 2007-08) returned to judge the competition, having won the trophy himself back in 2007 as a member of Radio Edit.

The first band to take to the stage was Shaky Foundations. Benjamin Chowdhury, Andrew Garcia-Cox, Joshua Marshall and Rupert Varley gave the competition a fitting opening with ‘Rock ‘n’ Roll Star’ by Oasis, which they followed with their original song ‘Tell Me The Truth’. Next up were Millie Ashton, Joseph Edwards and Xena Logan performing as The Tepid Grapes. They prefaced their original song ‘Brutal’ with an energetic medley of three rock classics: ‘Can’t Stop’ by Red Hot Chilli Peppers, ‘Basket Case’ by Green Day and ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’ by Nirvana.  Youth Concept’s Patrick Bentley, Charlie Griffiths, Harry Paterson and Sammy Ramadan were crowd-pleasers with lots of fans in the audience for their performances of Catfish and the Bottlemen’s ‘Soundcheck’ and their original song ‘Dopamine Machine’. Finally, Funktionality rounded off the Battle of the Bands 2019: Jean-Paul and Roxanne Asumu, Owen Critchlow and Joshua Marshall played ‘Tints’ by Anderson .Paak and their original song, ‘Mine’.

The difficult task of choosing a winner from those four worthy performances fell to Rob. On stage to announce the winner, he said: “It’s been an absolute pleasure to be back here judging the Battle of the Bands competition. … I really hope that all the bands I’ve seen today carry on doing what they love and making music throughout their lives because there really is nothing that can beat it. I was blown away by the quality of music that I saw, particularly the original material I heard from each band.”

Rob also praised all the bands’ great frontmanship and energy, but said that he was particularly impressed with the musical complexity of one of the acts. He commented, “If I walked into a bar and that band was on, I’d stay, and that’s why I’m going to award the first prize this year to Funktionality.”

Delighted winners Jean-Paul, Roxanne, Owen and Joshua returned to the stage to accept their trophy and shake Rob’s hand. Jean-Paul spoke on behalf of the band to thank Rob, the audience and in particular Boys’ Division Head of Music Mr Bleasdale, the Music Department and all the staff who helped to organise and run the competition.


Click the links below to watch the bands’ performances:

Funktionality: Tints and Mine

Shaky Foundations: Rock ‘n’ Roll Star and Tell Me The Truth

The Tepid Grapes: Can’t Stop / Basket Case / Smells Like Teen Spirit Medley

Youth Concept: Soundcheck and Dopamine Machine

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