Battle of the Bands: Four bands, one winner

Local bands will compete from 5–8:30 p.m. Friday in Jackson Hall Studio A



Staring at the Sun, one of the four competing bands, performing at a past show.

ANGEL IKUEZE, Evergreen reporter

Local Palouse bands Pumice Pocket, Half Step Ahead, Staring at the Sun and Sanity Point will compete in a Battle of the Bands from 5–8:30 p.m. Friday in Jackson Hall Studio A, Colleen Hill (she/they), Cable 8 Productions general manager, said.

The winning band will receive a grand prize of $500, donated by SEB, Hill said.

Hill said the admission fee to the event is $10. Concert-goers will then receive a ticket they can use to vote for the winner and get food from a taco truck outside of Jackson Hall. An extra fee of $5 will be required to cast an additional vote.

The winning band will be chosen based on the concert-goers’ votes, Hill said.

The event is the first of its kind, organized by an unprecedented collaboration between Cable 8, the Student Entertainment Board, KZUU 90.7 FM and Palouse Music Community, Hill said.

Hill said that SEB is also donating the taco truck for the event, KZUU is airing the audio of the event and Palouse Music Community is donating their PA systems, guitar equipment and other equipment.

Hill said Cable 8 holds one philanthropy event every semester, and that the Battle of the Bands will be the one for this semester. All of the money from the event will go to the Cougar Food Pantry, Hill said.

“Battle of the Bands is not only supporting a resource on campus, the food pantry that is available for all WSU students, but it’s also a great way to support local music,” Hill said.

Pumice Pocket, whose members are University of Idaho students, is a jazz band, Hill said. Half Step Ahead is a bass and guitar duo from Pullman, who play jazz as well.

Staring at the Sun and Sanity Point are both punk rock bands, Hill said, and feature WSU students as members.

Caleb Warwick, Staring at the Sun drummer, said that the band, which came together eight months ago, has four members who are all WSU students.

While Warwick is the drummer, Nathaniel Cutler is the lead singer and a rhythm guitarist, Kenneth Hernandez is the lead guitarist and a rhythm guitarist as well and Ian Wright is the bassist, Warwick said.

The band’s genre is also alternative rock, Warwick said, but they take influences from psychedelic rock, progressive rock and some other different genres as well.

Warwick said that the band plans to have fun at the event, as what they are going to perform is a “surprise.”

Ben Forbeck, Half Step Ahead guitarist and lead vocalist, said that the band is made up of himself and Anthony De Luca, who is a WSU student.

Forbeck said that specifically for the Battle of the Bands, the band is going to be joined by a drummer, Robby Walker.

Forbeck said that the band started in 2013 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, but they moved to Washington in 2017 and then to Pullman this year.

The genres of music that the band plays involve rock, funk, folk and jazz, Forbeck said. He said that the band is going to perform original music for the Battle of the Bands.

He also said that the band is going to be contributing, in music knowledge and sound equipment, to the event’s set-up.

“What we want is for everybody there, bands included, to have a good time, for the sounds to be awesome and to show where we can contribute musically,” Forbeck said.