In case you haven't been following the comments on our previous post on the subject, it's semi-official: Isle of Essence is the Best Band in Phoenix (according to the Arizona Republic).
Now, I actually hate to pile on the Republic right now. They're having a pretty rough week. First, The East Valley Tribune, their much smaller, suburban competitor (which formerly employed me) won a Pulitzer Prize for reporting, something the chronically underachieving Rep has never managed, then one of their senior editors embarrassed himself and the paper by posting a sour grapes rant about the matter on his facebook.
Now, well, as we understand it, they're naming a bar band whose next scheduled gig is at a tiny bar in Glendale, the "Best Local Band" in their cheesy rip-off of New Times time-honored Best of Phoenix. Eek.
Voting is done. The official announcement is not due until "mid-May" but the IOE guys have claimed victory in an e-mail exchange with me. They deny any cheating -- and from what I heard, I 100% agree they did nothing wrong -- but they did engage in a pretty serious e-mail campaign to get large swaths of voters who may or may not have heard them or any other band on the list. Hey, them's the rules, according to the Rep, so congratulations to IOE. By the way, they seem like very nice guys and we'll look forward to reviewing their new live disc sometime soon. Unlike the Republic, we'll give you our own opinions, instead of letting a bunch of cubicle-dwelling vote-bots make grand pronouncements about the best bands in this town.
Maybe that's a step up, maybe it ain't, but that's how we do it. Congrats again to IOE. Can't wait to see who wins the Republic's critic poll. Asses of Evil?