Sounding the 805

Battle of the bands showdown, Softsilence makes airwaves, B.A.T.S. on the loose and Oxnard rock on the rise

By Chris Mastrovito 05/13/2010

The annual Sans Souci Battle of the Bands continues on into the last semifinal round on Wednesday, May 19, as the lineup narrows further and the best bands move forward toward the June 6, final round. Last year’s second place finishers Dead of Night, which crammed in three consecutive shows last weekend in Ventura, will play alongside competitors Soul Fiyah and The Bloody Cunts for the chance to move on in competition against the winners of last Wednesday’s battle (undecided at the time of publication). So grab a drink next Wednesday night at The Sewer and show your support.

Ventura pop sensation Softsilenceis making airwaves again this month with a spot on the Live 105.5 morning show tentatively scheduled for Friday, May 14, when the band will be interviewed by host Trace Nealy and maybe even perform some songs live. On the night of the band’s sold-out show at Zoey’s Café, frontman Bryan Dixon said that coinciding with the interview, Live 105 will begin playing Softsilence on daily rotation. Tune in this Friday morning at 9 a.m., to hear the Ventura natives represent.

Ventura deathmetal band Burning at the Stake (B.A.T.S.) is hitting the overdrive pedal with a merciless schedule of huge shows throughout the coming year, putting it side by side with some of the most infamous names in death and grindcore from all over the country. It all starts this weekend with the two-day California Metalfest IVin Pomona, where B.A.T.S. will share the stage with grinders Cattle Decapitation, Misery Index, Dying Fetus and Fear Factory. Continuing its rampage of metal festivals, the band will travel east to Albuquerque, N.M., in August for the 10th annual Gathering of the Sick Fest and again in November for the fourth annual Goregrowlers Ball in San Antonio, Texas. The release of an upcoming full-length album which contains the track “Mangled Among the Heathens,” is set for sometime this summer. Catch the band locally at The Cabana Banquet Hall in Oxnard on May 24, with national touring deathmetal band Burning the Masses. Be sure to check out this exceptional local metal band while you have the chance.

Oxnard  is definitely proud of its hardcore punk and deathmetal scenes, but last weekend, new and emerging Oxnard pop alternative bands Hard Candy, Counting Planes and The Daring  showed Ventura’s Dirty Vinyl the less enraged side of Oxnard’s local music. Hard Candy, a brand-new almost-all-girl band, brings heavy metal overtones to its guitar-driven alternative rock core, in a way that may be described as Evanescence gone early ’90s grunge. Catch them May 22 at Sans Souci. Oxnard’s Counting Planes proves itself brutally talented pop punk/screamo band whose sound lies somewhere among  No Use for a Name, Yellowcard and Rise Against, complete with melodic interludes and shredding guitar solos. That band is going on a full national tour with local skate punkers Trial By Fury in July.

Three-piece pop-alternative band The Daring capped the night off with some sexy, danceable rhythms and memorable guitar hooks, making a good case that with its fashionable name and modern sound, The Daring is only a second guitarist and a polished demo away from radio-ready.   

Sounding the 805 is Ventura County’s only biweekly local music column. If you have a tip, a suggestion, a complaint, some dish or just a kind word, shoot Chris Mastrovito an e-mail. 


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