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Sense of Truth opens for Skid Row (video, photos)

Seven local bands gathered at Algoma University's Speak Easy Pub Saturday night to battle it out for one heck of a top prize. $500 and the opportunity to open for Skid Row on June 28 at Runway Park.
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Seven local bands gathered at Algoma University's Speak Easy Pub Saturday night to battle it out for one heck of a top prize.

$500 and the opportunity to open for Skid Row on June 28 at Runway Park.

The Blockade, Sikamikanico, Terminal, Sue Inside, Sense of Truth, The Scary Uncles and Free Beer played three songs each, hoping to be called back to play in the final round.

See the gallery at the bottom of the page for performance photos of each band.

Judges Keith Conway, Stephane Guindon and Tony Boniferro marked each band on playing ability, stage performance and presence, originality, band correlation and crowd reaction.

Their first order of business was to pick three finalists to play in the deciding round.

It must have proved more difficult than anticipated as they chose four finalists; Free Beer, Sense of Truth, The Scary Uncles and The Blockade.

Each band had only two songs to prove their Skid Row-worthiness.

"I feel like I'm on American Idol," said The Blockade front man Wayne Watkins.

7-year-old Justin Andreola had made up his mind about who should win this battle long ago, and was throwing rock fists in Sense of Truth's direction.

The young lad had even mustered up the nerve to ask for the band's autograph following the first set.

As the points were tallied and event coordinator Paul Skeggs approached the stage with three envelopes in his hand, audience members began screaming the name of their band of choice.

Third place and $125 went to Free Beer.

The Scary Uncles took home second place honours and $250.

And making Justin more than happy was the announcement that Sense of Truth had placed first and would be opening for Skid Row.

Chances are you've never heard of Sense of Truth.

No one at the Speak easy that night had either.

And that's OK.

Saturday night's Battle of the Bands was its first live gig.

Patric Belanger (bass), Cory Murchison (vocals, guitar), Steve Myers (guitar) and Ryan Haryett (drums) have been hard at work for the past year and a half, waiting for the right moment to unleash Sense of Truth on the Sault music scene.

"Most of us agreed that we should wait to play until we got tighter as a band. And then this came up and we figured why not. We're ready," said Belanger. "We practised like crazy for the last month since we heard about it. Without this coming up, it wouldn't have been much longer before we played our first gig."

"I'm overwhelmed," said Haryett about winning the competition.

"Going from a basement working our asses off to playing our first gig ever, a Battle of the Bands, to playing in front of probably thousands of people opening for Skid Row, I think I might pass out right now just thinking about it," said Murchison, half joking.

The event as a whole was a huge success, drawing approximately 220 attendees and raising $1518 to help construct the Sault's permanent skatepark.

The evening was made possible through generous contributions from the Superior Community Skatepark Association, the Algoma University Student Union and Crank Sound Distribution.

The video footage below was shot by SooToday.com's Tyler Simpson.

Sense of Truth



Battle of the Bands



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Donna Hopper

About the Author: Donna Hopper

Donna Hopper has been a photojournalist with SooToday since 2007, and her passion for music motivates her to focus on area arts, entertainment and community events.
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