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Boom Round 3 Week 1: Psylensol vs. Photos of Wagons

Hunger Anthem, live at the BOOM Round 2 Quarterfinal, held this past November 27th.

CONGRATULATIONS to Hunger Anthem for collecting the most votes at our live battle of the bands at Nietzsche’s this past Friday. With that win, they secure a spot on our B.O.O.M. Grand Finale bill—where one local act will walk off with a digital recording package courtesy of Guitar Center, a nice cash prize, plus priceless bragging rights. You can see highlights of Hunger Anthem's performance here on Artvoice TV.

This week, we’re featuring Photos of Wagons and Psylensol in our online battle of the bands.

For you dear readers who’ve been living under a rock, here’s how our contest works. Solo artists and bands visit and register by answering a brief questionnaire, like the ones below. They also submit a couple songs and a photo.

From the pile of submissions we receive, two acts are chosen each week, and they appear in the print edition of the paper. These two then compete head to head in our virtual concert hall—where visitors to can listen to the music, and then, with the click of a mouse, cast one vote for the contestant he or she prefers.

Thus, each week produces one winner. At the end of four weeks, we arrive at the four bands that then square off in a live showdown, where each audience member receives one ballot to cast for his or her favorite. At the end of that night, one band emerges victorious and wins a spot in the B.O.O.M. Grand Finale, the big live concert battle that pits the four winners of our preliminary shows against one another. That night, one band will join the ranks of past B.O.O.M. Grand Champions Dali’s Ghost and TypeRelevant.

Bands are encouraged to get out the vote any way they can, short of stuffing the ballot box. Our IT guy has detected such instances in the past, and it’s never been taken lightly. If you’re caught cheating, you can be disqualified. And there’s nowhere to appeal our decision.

Also, musicians, there’s still time to enter B.O.OM.. Visit today, to find out how. Tune in next issue to see who won this week’s match, and who’s up to bat.

Good luck this week to Psylensol and Photos of Wagons. One of them will win a spot in our next live showdown, scheduled for January 15, 2010, at Nietzsche’s. May the best band win.


Photos of Wagons

You must have the latest Adobe Flash Player installed to listen to the BOOM! contestants.

You must have the latest Adobe Flash Player installed to listen to the BOOM! contestants.

When/where did the band form? In 2007, Jarrod moved to Buffalo from Tucson, AZ. After years of trading demos back and forth with Joe, the bands sound and vibe was conceptualized. Jarrod made the move back to Buffalo and together Jarrod and Joe found and hired solid members from the local scene to complete the project. The members of PSYLENSOL all come from previously established acts including SELFOVERCOME, LAW, THEURGIST, and THE ABSENTEE PROJECT.

Band Members: Jarrod Tucker - vocals, acoustic guitar / Joe Benedict - lead guitar / Mike Paquette - percussion / Mike Hipkiss - bass / Jay Kulaszewski - rhythm guitar, background vocals

You might like us if you like: PSYLENSOL covers a varied spectrum of genres seeing as each member comes from a unique taste and background. Joe's guitar riffing is heavily influenced by melodic swedish metal, trance techno, and hip hop. Jarrods smooth singing and agitated bark hints at his taste in country, pop, and metal. Mike glues together the music on drums with his tight chops obtained through years of playing death metal. Jay's artsy offerings on rhythm guitar are influenced by his taste in emo and alt-rock. Mike's final gloss on bass is due largely to his taste in hardcore and funk. Overall, PSYLENSOL hopes to tap into each and every emotion a listener might have and offer a release for everyone and every taste.

Recorded Releases: "Drag You Down" EP (2007), "Empty Spaces" EP (2009)

Best show you've played: PSYLENSOL booked a gig once where we were very apprehensive and pessimistic because the other bands on the bill were not exactly what we thought we could fit into. The set went over incredibly well and PSYLENSOL was recieved with great response. Every gig gives us a chance for further exposure and helps us make and maintain contacts we might normally not find. Whether we play to three or three hundred people, every gig has a positive attribute for our career.

Worst show you've ever played: Each show has its share of problems to offer. From hard nosed promoters and club owners to set times being changed or rearranged to backlining issues, or van troubles on tour. One out of town gig had Jarrod having to improvise lyrics over a newly written unfinished song to fill set time. His "accidental" lyrics actually became the final hook for the song when completed. Every problem is met with determination and only helps PSYLENSOL build chemistry and become more road worthy and worldly.

Why you should win the Online Battle of Original Music: After all the years of failure, success, happiness, and heartbreak, we feel that with the molding and sculpting of ourselves into the body which is now PSYLENSOL, we have the next piece of the puzzle that will get us one step closer to being "whole".


When/where did the band form? We formed in 2008 in Buffalo. Four of us went to high school together, although we didn't know each other then. We were brought together over the years by mutual friends. We met Jams at a Central Terminal event last year.

Band Members: Braw Gower - vocals, acoustic guitar / Grant Schulte - guitar / Evan Kaderbeck - guitar / Dan Svensson - bass / Josh "Jams" Marotta - drums

You might like us if you like: Ryan Adams, Fleet Foxes, W.A.K.O.S., MGMT, Vampire Weekend, Beatles '65-'66, My Morning Jacket, Paul Simon.

Recorded Releases: Self-titled EP

Best show you've played: Nietzsche's, July 18th, our CD release Party. It was just amazing to play that great sounding room with all our friends and families dancing and singing along with us. There was an insane amount of energy that night.

Worst show you've ever played: Last year we played the Golden Key and played a miserable version of Nirvana's "Heart-shaped Box" to close the show. We couldn't get out of it. It went on and on through wimpy repeats; it was awful. We are much more selective these days if we decide to play covers.

Why you should win the Online Battle of Original Music: We play like we mean it, because we mean it. Our songs, all written by Brad Gower and cultivated by the band, bear incredible significance to us, and we want to share them with as many people as will listen. The BOOM will help us get this music into Buffalo's ears.


Voting for these bands is closed. Visit for results and current contestants.

Polls are open Thursday-Tuesday; winners and new contestants will be announced in next week's issue!

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