Bands are good. Bands battling each other for $2,500 is better. Manning was alive and buzzing last Thursday August 23 as the bar played host to the final of the annual Sydney University Band Competition. Six fresh acts fought it out for what MC Tom Walker described as “the fame, the money, the women and the power,” with Milkk, an instrumental trio, taking out the title.
Selected from a pool of forty applicants, three heats and two semi-finals, the calibre, talent and diversity of the final line-up was superb.
“It’s a great opportunity for bands to play, get known and get heard, because all the other bands bring their mates,” said Milkk guitarist Luke Bozzetto.
“There were so many genres, everyone at the same high skill level though, and it was amazing. You had like reggae, progressive metal and whatever the fuck Milkk were, all on stage together, it was awesome,” Tom Walker said.
A $1750 runner-up prize went to the jangle-punk foursome The Nectars, whilst Ocean Alley, a psychedelic-reggae band-of-six, snatched up 3rd prize and a sweet $500.
A list of past entrants boasts the likes of Frenzal Rhomb, The Jezabels, Cloud Control and many other successful Australian artists/bands whose humble beginnings as university students resonated highly with most of Thursday night’s competitors.
For the victorious Milkk, the competition has just begun. They will go on to compete in the NSW State Final of the National Campus Band Competition, an event that will also be held at Manning Bar on September 14.