OC Music Awards Best Live Band
Feb. 25, 2011
Galaxy Concert Theater
The best live band of the 10th-annual OC Music Awards was announced last Friday night at a showcase at the Galaxy Concert Theatre in Santa Ana. And the winner is . . . drumroll, please . . . The Steelwells!
The Fullerton band were one of five acts competing for the honor, alongside pop-punk band We Are the Arsenal, metal band Railroad to Alaska, indie band Kiev and the rap spectacle that is BLOK. Comments, complements and criticisms I made regarding these bands in reviews of earlier showcases stand. The only exception would be the Steelwells, whose performance I missed at night one of the semi-finals held at Detroit Bar on Jan. 1.
This glitch was present throuought the first half of the set and led to some visible tension, most notably when keyboard player Billy Kim made several emphatic gestures toward his gear in an attempt to signal the onstage sound guy. Luckily, these blokes are pros and kept their cool, finishing big and encouraging audience participation on the final song of their set, "El Capitan." Their winning wasn't a shock and was well-deserved. Having recently gained the attention of Rolling Stone magazine, big things are (hopefully) in their future.
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Overheard: "I think she has rabies," said one girl in the audience of BLOK MC Gianna Gianna, whose wide-eyed sneer can be rather unsettling.