The Boston College student body is absolutely filled with talent. I was assured of this fact yet again by the electrifying performances of student bands O2, White Noise, Little Saturday, Unit One, The Outliers, and Juice at last Thursday’s Battle of the Bands in the Vandy Cabaret Room. The contest was judged by Brielle Mariucci of the Arts Council, Katie Kelleher of the Music Guild, and Kelsey Golden of CAB, and the rowdy crowd created a great atmosphere. The top 3 performances as chosen by the judges were O2, Little Saturday, and The Outliers (in no particular order), so those acts get to perform in the next round at the Arts Festival here at BC on April 27-29. I was able to ask some of the band members a few questions after the show, and this is what I learned.
O2 is composed of Matt Chilton ’18 on guitar, Nicholas Rocchio-Giordano ’18 on bass, and Mario Borges ’18 on drums. They consider their genre to be a progressive fusion of multiple different styles, including funk, rock, blues, Brazilian, and Latin, among others, and their performances are characterized by syncopated rhythms and smooth transitions between songs and jams. They attribute their musical influences to artists like Snarky Puppy, George Benson, Santana, and Héctor Lavoe. “I must say Brazilian music has had a huge influence on me; I absolutely love it!” said Mario Borges, “It is such a great opportunity to be able to perform in Arts Fest with other great bands and we can’t wait to perform there! It’s going to be a great time with great music and great atmosphere, so we look forward to having fun doing the thing we love the most!”
Little Saturday is a rock funk and jazz fusion group composed of Peter Toronto ’20 on guitar and vocals, Andrew Hammond ’18 on bass and vocals, Sunny Luo ’17 on keyboard, Isaiah Rawlinson ’18 on saxophone, Alex Eichler ’20 on drums, and Zach Pugliares ’19 on guitar. They formed the group this year when they met through the Pop Styles music group here at BC. “We’re very excited to be part of this competition, and will definitely be giving the performance our all when the time comes,” said Peter. “Above all else, we’re looking forward to putting on a good show with the two other finalists, O2 and The Outliers.” Alex found the most fun part of the contest to be the crowd: “The audience knows it’s a contest, so everyone’s friends got really into it and had a great time. It certainly made us play better and have much more fun than we have in the past.” Check out their Facebook page and SoundCloud to learn more.
Unit One is a 3-piece band centered around blues and rock music that formed earlier this year for the Music Guild’s Fall Band Showcase. It includes Rachel Moon ’19 on guitar and vocals, Nicolas Sucre ’19 on bass, and Josh Mentzer ’19 on drums. They met when they volunteered through the Music Guild at Unit One of the Franciscan Hospital for Children (hence the name, Unit One). Rachel says she gets her musical inspiration from artists like John Mayer, Paramore, and Warpaint. They have upcoming shows on April 1st at BC’s Break the Bubble event at Faneuil Hall and Out of the Blue in Cambridge. See their Facebook page to find more details and check out their recently-released EP.
The Outliers are a lively group consisting of Chris Dalla Riva ’17 on guitar and vocals, Andrew Hammond ’18 on drums, Angus MacNaughton ’18 on bass and vocals, and Peter Julian ’17 on trumpet. Their style is “best characterized by upbeat rhythms and memorable melodies.” Each member has his own distinct taste in music, which “generates a high degree of eclecticism,” said Chris, who personally takes to the styles of Bruce Springsteen and Jim Croce. “Battle of the Bands was a blast,” he said; “every act was quite impressive, and we’re thankful that we got to share the stage with everybody. I assume Arts Fest will also be a great time. We’re going to bring as much energy as we can.”
Juice is BC’s renowned 8-piece band that has been making waves throughout the whole Boston area. It consists of Ben Stevens ’18 on vocals, Daniel Moss ’17 on guitar, Chris Vu ’17 on keyboard, Christian Rougeau ’18 on violin and vocals, Rami El-Abidin on bass, Kamau Burton ’17 on acoustic guitar and vocals, Miles Clyatt ’17 on drums, and Michael Ricciardulli ’17 on guitar and vocals. According to their website, their style is a “mixture of funk, hip-hop, R&B, rock, pop, and alternative influences.” They brought tons of energy to the contest and seemed to be a crowd favorite; if you missed them at Battle of the Bands, you can catch them at their show at Brighton Music Hall on March 31st.
All the acts contributed to what was an all-around great show, and they were all talented and well-rehearsed. Show up to the Arts Festival on April 27-29 to hear O2, Little Saturday, and The Outliers perform again.
All photos courtesy of BC Music Guild.