For the first time since 2005, The Bamboozle Festival, a three-day music and pop culture extravaganza, is returning to its roots in Asbury Park, New Jersey. The evolving festival, now in its 10th year, books bands from all over the nation and the world to play on nine stages spread throughout the beach and boardwalk .
This year more than 100 bands are set to perform May 18-20. Among these groups are a handful of winners from the Break Contest, a local battle of the bands that picks the best from several regions in the tri-state area. Here’s a list of the Long Island bands to check out. For the full lineup visit www.thebamboozle.com
This Good Robot
Who They Are: After combining two separate bands into one, This Good Robot became a megagroup headed by former Patent Pending lead vocalist Michael Ragosta. They’re comic book nerds who can write good tunes.
Why Check ‘Em Out: They’ve taken the crown as Regional Champion in this year’s Break Contest – beating out mroe than 600 bands from the tri-state area. They’ll be reppin’ Long Island hard. Plus, watching a band with seven members playing at the same time is huge fun. They’ll be featured on the main stage Saturday, May 19, and two other appearances on Friday and Sunday.
The Warden and F.A.M.E.
Who They Are: As a genre-infused hip-hop reggae rock band, The Warden and F.A.M.E. from Bay Shore formed in 2010 and have since taken the scene by storm. As long as they play all year long, summer never leaves the Island.
Why Check ‘Em Out: They performed in last year’s Break Contest and played the Bamboozle at Met Life Stadium. Although they were aiming to take the ultimate prize this year, they are LI’s runner-up. After seeing them live, you will most likely be wiggling on the dance floor. Oh, and they have this really cool drum thing that’s become a staple at this point.
D.A. The Future
Who They Are: Although originally from California, Derek Anthony grew up on Long Island. His father was involved in a church choir, which sparked Anthony’s interest in music. Now he’s got a well-oiled project on his hands and is ready to show the music industry what he is all about.
Why Check ‘Em Out: He turned heads at this year’s Break Contest. Anthony’s released several mixtapes and has performed at several different venues as an opener and even in some instances – a headliner. Anthony is not a voice to be reckoned with. He will make himself be heard at this year’s Bamboozle.
Who They Are: As an all-girl group, The Age can play music better than most of their male band friends. They are a punk band who have been playing around the Island, but even people across the ocean have taken notice…so what are you waiting for?
Why Check ‘Em Out: First off, the medium age of the band members is 16. They came into the Break Contest as one of the younger bands but quickly made their mark by showing everyone what they are proud to have: attitude. They’ll fit in nicely in the Bamboozle line-up.
Who They Are: Formally known as Dead End, Listen Close underwent a name change to help with their growing sound. Originally they were more on the reggae side of the spectrum, but their newer songs bring a more alternative rock sound to make a nice mixture.
Why Check ‘Em Out: Their influences range from Less Than Jake to fellow Islanders, Envy on the Coast. That should be enough to get you interested. They are a much more polished band now, and this Bamboozle performance should give some insight into Long Island’s reggae rock scene.
Who They Are:Fighting the good fight as an original rock band,
Craving Strange are a great mix of alternative rock and pop. They’ve developed a cult-like following on the Island and now others are starting to realize why.
Why Check ‘Em Out: As their influences state online Foo Fighters, Incubus and Jimmy Eat World, it is no surprise that these guys deserved to play the Bamboozle. They’ve been doing this for a while so come celebrate the payoff with the band.
Two Cent Sam
Who They Are: Formed in 2009, Two Cent Sam deliver a blend of indie and classic rock to the masses. They’ve recently released a brand new record full of songs that are masterfully written.
Why Check ‘Em Out: Bringing influences from a completely different time period and mixing it with a hip sound is just what the band needed to be a breakout here on the Island. And with their fighting power, playing the Bamboozle will be exactly what they need to show they’ll be here for a long time. It also helps they won the wildcard spot, proving that the industry has begun to take notice.