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Manteca group picked for Battle of Bands

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Manteca group picked for Battle of Bands

The Manteca band Faith and Bullets.

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POSTED January 10, 2014 1:23 a.m.

Sometimes just getting your foot in the door is half the battle.

Blowing the competition away with a breed of high-energy rock-and-roll is the other half.

Manteca band Faith and Bullets – a collaboration of members of several different local bands that came together several months ago to create a hybrid of rock music – thinks that they have enough to do just that.

Last week the band’s manager, Tom Alexander, got a notice that they had been accepted as an entrant to the prestigious Hayward Battle of the Bands competition held every year at Chabot College.

It’s not as easy place to make your bones. Plenty of Central Valley bands have cracked the lineup in recent years, but find themselves going up against some of the best musicians that the Bay Area – typically a musical hotbed – has to offer.

And the deck is stacked against Faith and Bullets.

They have yet to play their first formal, live gig and are still in that early phase where the members are learning the ins-and-outs of one another – something that comes naturally over time. It will likely be something that the other bands already have down to a science.

But Alexander isn’t discouraged. He knows that the guys that he represents – vocalist Stevie Mayhem, lead guitarist Rikk Alexander, rhythm guitarist Cody Sparkz, bassist Abel Lynch and drummer Ryan McKinley – have what it takes to leave a lasting impression.

“I think that it’s very good that they were able to get a spot there,” Alexander said. “It’s a lot of hard work that goes in to making it to that point – there’s a lot more than what most people realize.

“Right now we’re looking at setting up a lot of different things, and hopefully this performance will help elevate the status of the band and give them more opportunities.”

The most unique thing about Faith and Bullets is, this very well might be your father’s rock-and-roll band.

Just one glimpse of the band’s picture and you’re instantly teleported back to the big hair, glam-rock bands of the 1980’s. Cinderella. Motley Crue.

The hair is there. The clothes are there. The sound is there.

Then you throw in a little bit of a modern twist – say, a sound similar to the Black Veil Brides – and you’ve got a unique performance that both takes you back to a musical era that people are now nostalgic for and makes you feel like you’re hearing something brand new.

“I think that there’s this flash to the way that they perform,” Alexander said. “It’s really hard to categorize the style of music that it is that they play, but we’ve been getting a lot of good responses.

“We’ll see what happens in Hayward.”

For more information about upcoming shows, visit  

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