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Lovers of indie, makers of mayhem: Mark your calendars and rehearse your heckling skills. You’ll want to be prepared for Oct. 5, when "Girls vs. Boys: Battle of the Indie Pop Bands" enters round three at Williamsburg’s Trash Bar.

The Battle started when Marianne Pillsbury, front lady of battling band The Marianne Pillsburys, hosted the first two contests at Sin-e on the Lower East Side in June and August of 2005. Having won the first round, the girls upset the boys again in round two’s especially controversial fight, making the score to date a stark 2-0.

"Girls vs. Boys," an "American Idol"-style contest, pits three majority-female bands against three primarily male bands, all of the indie pop-punk-rock genre. Local celebrity music experts serve as blunt and loud-mouthed judges, and a local comic serves as the riffing MC.

The $6 admission buys all that plus an hour of open bar, free Tater Tots, ample trash talking and participation as part of the event’s riled-up crowd.

"It’s going to be brutal," Pillsbury says of the imminent battle, which will serve as a rematch for round two. The Aug. 17 battle hurdled out of control when the judges bashed one of the Boys’ bands with some particularly searing comments.

According to Pillsbury, when Matt DeGroat, singer and guitar player for The Oggs, suggested that the girls’ team had gotten the judges to fix the contest, it was proposed that the winner be decided in a sudden-death wrestling match. Before the wrestling could commence in earnest, however, the judges announced an unorthodox decision to declare the Girls as the overall winners, but to award The Oggs - representing the Boys - second place behind The Marianne Pillsburys.

As for DeGroat, Pillsbury says, "I’m sure he has some choice things to say about it."

"I think there was a biased judge, and they changed the rules at the last minute," DeGroat says. "The Pillsburys are going to lose this time, and that will be followed by a wrestling match, which they’ll lose, too."

The idea of "Girls vs. Boys" came to Pillsbury when she became bored after years of playing random gigs in the New York area with bands that were incompatible with her own.

"I took matters into my own hands and decided to start scheduling things myself," Pillsbury says. "I have a background in advertising, so having a great concept was important, and I thought ’Girls vs. Boys’ would be a great concept to bring people out."

Of course, it’s mostly about the music.

"I wanted to unearth some bands we would be compatible with. It was really important that our bands’ fans cross-pollinate," explained Pillsbury. In particular, she wanted to find local female-dominated bands.

"I didn’t know of enough girl bands out there getting exposure," says Pillsbury. "This genre is so male-dominated." She estimates that 80 to 90 people showed up for the first two shows.

"But this is Brooklyn, a whole new ball game," says Pillsbury, who hails from Bay Ridge. Williamsburg, she believes, could draw a larger crowd from both Manhattan and Brooklyn.

The event’s Oct. 5 lineup pits The Marianne Pillsburys, The Assault and The Booty Olympics against The Oggs, The Inevitable Breakups and Locksley. The VIP panel of judges will feature: GO Brooklyn Editor Lisa J. Curtis; WolfBlock Law entertainment attorney Barry Perlman; Senior Director of BMI Writer/Publisher Relations Samantha Cox; and Chris Smith of

Comedian Liam McEneany, who has appeared on Comedy Central’s Premium Blend and VH1’s Best Week Ever, will serve as the show’s MC.


The third "Girls vs. Boys: Battle of the Indie Pop Bands" takes place Oct. 5 at 8 pm at Trash Bar (256 Grand St. at Roebling Steet in Williamsburg). Admission is $6. For the latest details as "Girls vs. Boys" approaches, check the event’s Web site, The open bar runs from 9 pm to 10 pm.

Updated 4:00 pm, November 10, 2010
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