The Battle for Spring Weekend: A Preview

Fordham’s Annual Battle of the Bands is back. This Saturday, at 7pm, ten bands will duke it out at Rodrigues, vying for a chance to open for the yet-to-be-announced Spring Weekend Headliner.

The rules are simple. Bands get five minutes to set up and 15 minutes to play. Their sound will be turned off if they go over time. The winner will be chosen based on popular vote. Only Fordham students with valid IDs can vote. Bands must stay clothed during their performances. Rod’s doesn’t censor them in any other way. Sounds like a pretty good time, right?

If you’re still not convinced, here’s a preview to save you some time (listed in order of performance):

Bright Red Cardinal

Made up of James Murtagh, FCRH ‘14, Mike McCarville, FCRH ‘15, Elle Crane, FCRH ’16, AJ Golio, FCRH ’16, Pete Capodilupo, FCRH ’15 and Devon Sheridan, FCRH ’15, Bright Red Cardinal came together in the spring semester of 2013. Murtagh wrote a musical, Take Your Base, which starred singer and multi-instrumentalist Crane, with Sheridan and Golio playing in the pit. McCarville and Capodilupo joined in soon after, and the rest is history.

Why you should go see them:  If a combination of The Lumineers and Dr. Dog with a heavy helping of folk revival thrown in sounds up your alley, this is the band for you.  Take a Listen Here:

Why you should vote for them: “Because we love you all.” – Devon Sheridan

Senseless Sam and the Orangutans

With a predestined name handed down by guitarist Joe Burke’s father, Senseless Sam and the Orangutans “just kind of came together”. Composed of Felix Chmiel, GSB ’15, Mike Sansevere, GSB ’15 Joseph Burke, FCRH ’15 and Devon Sheridan, FCRH ’15 , the band promises to show you a good time.

Why you should go see them:  If you’re into The Arctic Monkeys but, like, a little less British. Take a listen here:

Why you should vote for them: “We are four guys who absolutely love music and love nothing more than to perform it” – Joe Burke

Second Child

Made up of Alex DeSimine, GSB ‘15, Alex Tremitiere, NYU ‘16, Sean Lemky FCRH ‘14, and TJ Alaca, FCRH ‘13, Second Child had a few lineups before settling on the current combination. DeSimine and Tremitiere have known each other since age 13, and met Lemkey and Acala at Fordham. Surprisingly, the band is not actually made of up “second children.” The name came in as Second Child was the group’s second band, and Tremitiere thought it had a nice ring to it.

Why you should go see them:  If you’re into any combination of Fleet Foxes, Wilco, Dr. Dog, Fruit Bats or the Dirty Projectors, Second Child is definitely worth a listen.

Why you should vote for them: ”Because we promise to be at least half as good as Jay Sean.” – Alex Tremitiere

The Keating Steps

As you may have guessed, The Keating Steps is, in fact, named after the cozy campus location on which the members frequently perform. The band’s current lineup includes Dan Stracquadanio, FCRH ‘15, Delia Grizard, FCRH ‘15, Greg Steltzer, FCRH ‘15, Mike Sansevere, FCRH ‘15, Ian Grotton, FCRH ‘15, Ava Gagliardi, FCRH ‘15 and TJ Acala, FCRH ‘13, all of whom started playing together in the fall of 2013.

Why you should go see them: If a combination of Old Crow Medicine Show, Spirit Family Reunion, and The Avett Brothers is your thing, then this is the band for you. Take a listen here:

Why you should vote for them: “We know Fordham students have been waiting on a good old-fashioned hoedown for Spring Weekend, and our set will contrast nicely with the southern aristocratic theme of the Kentucky Derby.”- Ava Gagliardi and Delia Grizard

The Suits

The Suits met in the basement of Queen’s Court freshman year and have been dressing well ever since. Featuring Eddie Gore, FCRH ‘15,  as lead singer, Mike Sansevere, FCRH ‘15, as drum machine player, Eric Grossman, FCRH ‘15, as lead guitar, and Ian Grotton FCRH ‘15, as bass player, this indie-electronic group’s music is is lively and dance-friendly.

Why you should go see them: If you’re looking for a slightly less electronic mix of Foster the People and MGMT, this could be the band for you. Listen here: http://thesuitsmusic.bandcamp.com/

Why you should vote for them: “Because we’re beautiful.” – Mike Sansevere

Vengeance Navy

A large ensemble band, Vengeance Navy is made up of Drew Rotunno, FCRH ‘14, Alex Minikes, FCRH ‘14, Matthew Hurley, FCRH ‘14, Ben Kopon, FCRH ‘14, Mike Brown, FCRH ‘16, Sam Farnum, FCRH ‘16 and Quinn McGovern, FCRH ‘16. The name came from a piece of art that showed a giant whale waiting ominously below a tiny boat with the word “Revenge” written on it. The members of the band have been friends for a little while, and it took Drew Rotunno asking them to play all together to finally do so.

Why you should go see them: According to it’s members, Vengeance Navy “sounds like something between the White Stripes, the Screaming Females, and the dying moans of the overthrown bank-based oligarchy.” So you should probably check it out.

Why you should vote for them: “Because we have horns, we have a groovy bassist, and some kicka** face-scraping guitars.” – Drew Rotunno


Jarflower is comprised of Matt Mirro, FCLC ‘14, Jazmin Grimaldi, FCLC ‘14, Tamara Almai, FCLC ‘14, Robert Hill, NYU ‘14, Steven Kocal, Adelphi ‘14, and Jake Stamoulis, Adelphi ‘14. They have played a variety of venues around the city, from the Studio at Webster Hall to Arlene’s Grocery. Jarflower was also the first student band chosen to perform at FCLC’s Winterfest show in 2013.

Why you should go see them: With influences ranging from Black Sabbath and The Cure, to Soundgarden & Incubus, if you like throwback ‘90s alternative rock, this is the band for you. Listen here:

Why you should vote for them: “Because we have an original sound, we put on an awesome show, and we’d love to finally have a chance to play Rose Hill – especially for Spring Weekend.” – Matt Mirro

King Mulhacen

This senior duo is comprised of Seam Lemkey and Henry Bartholomay, both FCRH ‘14. The pair met freshman year in Alumni Court South, and the bromance has been going strong ever since. The two have been playing together since they met, but didn’t start writing or seriously pursuing music until they went abroad together to Granada, Spain. The band name comes from the tallest mountain in Spain,  Mulhacen, which the pair climbed together on a backpacking trip.

Why you should go see them: If you like sweet harms and bands likes Fleet Foxes and the Lumineers, this is the act for you.

Why you should vote for them: “Because we would love to serenade your awakening hungover souls the morning of spring weekend with some sweet harmonies and soothing melodies.” – Sean Lemkey

Tree Meister

Predominantly a cover band, Tree Meister experiments with a variety of genres. Originally a two man group, the band’s has expanded to included Alex Whiteaker FCRH ‘14, Mike Johnson GSB ‘14 and George Smith, FCRH ‘14. After meeting Freshmen year as Manresa students in Tierney Hall, they decided to team up and play together as seniors.

Why you should go see them: These guys want everyone who sees them to have a great time and to enjoy their entire set.  They consciously pick songs people will like, so look out for some party classics.

Why you should vote for them: “Because we’re guys who love playing music and really love bringing intensity to the people” – Alex Whitaker.

This is it

Another all-senior band, This is it is made up of Alex Ponchak, FCRH ‘14, Danny Kearney, FCRH ‘14, Clay Lewis, GSB ‘14, Dylan DeMartino, FCRH ‘14 and Bobby Dallas, FCRH ‘14. Each member comes from a different musical background: choir singer, jazz drummer, pop-punk and alternative groups, coming together to create a unique sound.

Why you should go see them: If you’re looking for a wildcard, the combination of everyone’s different musical backgrounds promises to make for an interesting sound.

Why you should vote for them: “Because we are playing this show like it will be our last” – Alex Ponchak

And there you have it, a line-up with something for everyone. Stop by and support your classmates, they all promise to give performances to remember.