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AIS Battle of the Bands Abu Dhabi Review - By Ibex
Bands: Exposed, Exploit, Migrane, Paradox, Nerve-Cell, Illuminatus, Perverse, Profane, Circe & Ruptured Rubber

I would like to thank all the bands that played at the Battle in Abu Dhabi for putting together a great live show. You guys all were fucking cool. But who I would like to thank even more is all the people who helped out and were there at the school for 15 hours in the 44 degree heat setting everything up. To all roadies, Sound Techs(Jesse and Dulib), Organisers(Moe and Madwahi) and everyone else who helped out. You are the un-sung heroes and I give you thanks.

Ok, I am going to do this in Chronological order, and for those that don't know what that means, I'm going to d it in the order of bands.

The 1st Band were Exposed. Exposed played a very punky set with two originals and two (punk-version)covers. Their music was very aggressive for what it was and the band pulled a good second gig for themselves. The two "covers" they did were Barbie Girl by Aqua in their own punk way and a Punk-Version of Celine Dions 'My Heart will go on'. All in all, a very good show.

Then came Exploit, a new band, who played an original, a Eurythmics(its not Marilyn Manson) cover, a metallica cover and an original. It was weird how the band kept changing instruments throughout the set. They didn't just trade instruments, they even changed their line-up. Nothing special by these guys but a show all the same.

Thirdly came Migrane. Migrane are another new band who palyed their second gig after playing their first gig with Exposed on their First gig. Migrane are a strange yet very aggressive band with weird keyboards and powerful guitars. They played three originals and pulled off a cool show for the audience.

After this came first-timers Paradox. Paradox played a different style of music, kind of a mixture between Punk and Emo, its strange. Although, the other band of 2 that had a female vocalist, the band played three songs and did a good fist gig for themselves.

Then things really started to heat up. Another first time band , although un-fucking-believable, Nerve-Cell came on. Nerve-Cell were the only band that weren't actually from Abu Dhabi, but actually from Sharjah and Dubai. The band played pure hardcore/emo with the most aggressive set I have seen from a band in Abu Dhabi. The band played un-fucking-believably with 3 songs, 2 originals and a cover of Narcasiss. My thanks go out to these guys and I hope to see you all in Dubai.

After Nerve-Cell came the sounds of screaming fans accompanied by Illuminatus in the back-ground. It is amazing how this band can get a crowd to cheer by walking on to stage. Illuminatus are by far the most well kown band in the UAE just now and it's very understandable why. The band play their own very unique style music which everybody loves. Even the teachers of the school were saying 'WOE!! These guys are actually really good!' The band played a 3 song set which included Solitude, Libertad and The Burden of Truth. These guys will also be in Dubai and I hope to see them there also.

After Illuminatus came the 'original pranksters' as I like to call them, Perverse. Perverse are always good to watch at a gig. They pull of amazing showsin which everyone loves to see. The band have such a stage presence that evryone loves to just listen to everything that comes out of the speakers. Perverse played amazing with three songs, Polly-Poison, Tough Guys and another one of which I can't remember the name of. Perverse are cool and I hope to see them again in future gigs, hopefully at MSF.

Third last came Profane. This was Profanes second gig after a rather un-successful first gig at the Grand Continental alongside Illuminatus. However, the band sure have improved and changed their style a litlle bit also. The band seem to have slowed down their music. They played three songs with their new drummer, all originals, and I must say, I was very impressed with their set. I hope to see these guys also at MSF.

Following-Up to Profane were the other second-timers Circe. Circe played fucking amazingly as they always have. Their set was absolutely bloody amazing. Circe is a band that I want to have posters of on mywall because well, they sam to be bringing something amazing to the Abu Dhabi Underground. Their set included Black Clouds, Rest and The Fallen. Amazing!

Lastly came the 'Psycho Nut-Jobs' Ruptured Rubber. Ruptured Rubbr are the most amzing band to watch live. The band unfortunately only played which were Pure New Religion and another one which I can't remember. Kareem, as usual, was Psycho on stage, a little Psycho for his own good, at one point during the show, while Kareem was singing, the lead fell out of the back of the mic. But the show went on and continued to freak out everybody in the crowd. Ruptured Rubber are one of my favourite members of the AD Underground.

The winners went like this:
Best Guitarist - The Long-Haired dude from Nerve-Cell
Best Bassit - Manolo Pombo of Illuminatus
Best Keyboardist - Dave Crosby of Illuminatus
Best Drummer - Samer of Perverse
Best Instrumentalist - Julio Taylor of Illuminatus and Circe
Best Male Vocalist - Omar Bsharat of Perverse
Best Female Vocalist - Hannah Cartwright of Circe
Most Creative Band - Nerve-Cell
Best Song - Circe for Rest
Best Overall Band - Illuminatus

I would like to Congratulate all the winners for what they achieved. And I would especially like to thank the bands Nerve Cell, Illuminatus and Circe(Because you all fucking rule and are such cool people).

Cheers to everybody,
The Ibex