Words & Photos by Terresa Allen
Last Friday night Expressive Ground played host to their annual The Green Room: Battle of the Bands (BOB) Final for 2018. Each year this not for profit Gold Coast association, focused on facilitating and supporting the development of young locals artists, coordinates a band competition open to any group of musicians, playing any genre of music as long as the average age of band members is 25 or under.
Bands must perform some original material and be able to fill a 20 minute set. Expressive Ground provides a basic backline and has an experienced engineer on hand to professionally mix sound. With a judging panel made up of music industry professionals and last year’s BOB winner there’s a whole lot to love about the platform this night give to up and coming new talent on the Gold Coast.
With some awesome prizes up for grabs, including $1000 cash, song mastering, industry mentorship and accounting services as well as free rehearsal space for a year, this year’s competition was red hot. The four finalists provided a great night of entertainment and assurance that with these youngsters coming through the ranks, the Gold Coast music scene will be in mighty good shape for many years to come.
First up was Girl and Girl a four piece garage rock band, consisting of guitars, bass and drums, who just entering the local scene provided and admirable start to the evening, grow more comfortable and confident with their performance and the set wore on. With a swag of original material, and some locals in vocal support Kai Aubort, Jayden Williams, Coby Williams and Melissa James took out the people’s choice for the night.
The second finalists on stage were the newly formed duo of Saint Amber, brain child of Gabriella Gorman who impressed the judges with both her stellar vocals and song writing in the heats. Although they have jammed together before this duo was so newly formed that it was the first time Gabriella and bass guitarist Sam Mulherin had actually performed together. With that in mind the pair showed enormous potential and put together a great set which had the judges excited about their future.
Next up were Treachery Cove, a riotous alternative rock trio consisting of Dominic Laing on vocals and guitar, Monique Gould on bass and making up the Holy Grail was the brilliant young percussionist Steff Ross on drums. These guys were a little older and a little more polished, which clearly showed with Treachery Cove producing some great original heavy rock. Dom’s vocal performance impressed the judges and the trio’s hard hitting set had the crowd on their feet. No doubt you’ll be watching these guys in a venue near you soon and with The Green Room’s 2018 Battle of the Bands first prize under their belt they are off to a flying start.
Last up were We All Drive, not actually sure if these lads are old enough to drive but they certainly can entertain. An energetic, charismatic, alternative rock duo with talent to burn, the pairing of Joel Sims on guitar and vocals and Liam Chapman on drums aims to please and duly did so with a blistering 20 minute set featuring some terrific original material. They lost out to Treachery Cove by the narrowest of margins – 1 point!, but you can definitely expect to be hearing big things from these guys and can check them out for yourselves around the local pub circuit.