Meet the Finalists: BOTB 2024

UVM loves live music. It’s no secret. We love the groove, the crowd, the dancing and, most of all, we love the bands. The student band scene at UVM has always been an essential part of our culture and a central point of pride. Every year, new bands form and others go on to dissolve or move on from college life, creating a constant stream of musicians finding their way into the limelight. And what better way to get in the spotlight than UPB’s Battle of the Bands! The preliminary round is behind us and you all voted on your favorites. These four bands put on shows that stood out and earned their spot in the grand finale.

The sections for Cows on the Moon and Soap are longer with the addition of quotes and info from their interviews! You can’t truly know any of these bands till you’ve seen them live, so make sure to be there for the real action on April 5th in Grand Maple Ballroom. And then catch the winner take the stage as the opening act at SpringFest on April 20!

Update as of March 29: Due to a scheduling conflict, Lunch the Band will be taking the place of Neato in the Battle of the Bands Finale. Check them out on Instagram at @lunchtheband!


With a foundation in indie-rock, Arma-No-Dillo leans a little more towards folk than the other finalists. Their instrumental style emphasizes layered stringed instruments that communicate with ebbs and flows of noise. Charlie Uffelman and Erik Lyngstad-Hughes both sing while playing either guitar or bass. Logan Pickrell sprinkles the folk on top playing both acoustic guitar and mandolin. And last but not least, behind the kit is Gabe Bango. Arma-No-Dillo can bring emotion to the stage with their honest lyricism and melodic patterns, but that doesn’t stop Charlie from building up to a belting chorus backed by the crescendo of instruments. They have a single out on Spotify called “Strides,” so go on! Give it a listen!

Cows On the Moon

Cows On the Moon doesn’t define themselves in a single genre, having each member bring their own tastes and tunes to the group. They draw a lot of influence from psychedelic rock bands like Pink Floyed and admit to a touch of funk and heavy rock as well. The band is made up of singer Keagan Lafferty, guitarist Sal Woyciesjes, bassist Henry Leister, Peter Nicholson on guitar and keys, Ryan Anderson on keys and harmonica, and Alisdair Chauvin on drums. 

You may have noticed lead singer Keagan sitting on a throne during the preliminary round. She tore her ACL a few days before the show and got the idea from Joni Mitchell’s performance at the Grammys. In regards to her lack of mobility, Keagan adds, “I was afraid we wouldn’t be able to getcrowd engagement in the same way we usually do, because I like to dance around.” With Keagan back on her feet, expect to see some more movement from all the members in the finale.

Even though Keagen was royally confined to the throne, to describe their first set as static would be a disservice. During the interview, Peter reflected on their prior set, “Sal fell over on his back and just ended up continuing to shred while laying on his pedal board.” If this is the kind of energy they bring to Brennan’s you definitely won’t want to miss the big stage.

Cows On the Moon will be debuting a couple of unheard songs at the finale and they have music on Spotify. Give it a listen before the big show!


Leaving an impression in the preliminary round, Neato is a band to be reckoned with. The crew consists of Mason Kosman and Ayden Flanigan on guitar, Adam Morenberg on bass and Lily Kulp on drums. Neato describes their music as noisy indie rock, slacker rock and shoegaze. I would describe it as fun. If I had long hair to throw around, goodness knows I’d be doing just that. With groovy and catchy repetitive riffs that sit atop satisfyingly scratchy rhythm guitar, crunchy bass and banging drums, their music would get anyone moving. They’ve got a live album and multiple singles streaming, so make sure to check them out.


Made up of all first years, Soap the band is new to the scene. But, don’t get it twisted, their lack of time playing together doesn’t hold them back from putting on a stellar show. They proved that much and more in the preliminary round. The band is made up of Aurora Eddy on vocals and rhythm guitar, Corby Guba on vocals and bass, Drew Kardos on keys and vocals, Jake Dittos (known to the band as JD) on lead guitar and Jake Katz on drums.

Each member brings a different vibe to the table, creating a modge podge of genre and sound, but at the core, Corby states, “It’s all indie.. It’s fun. It’s upbeat. We try to keep it lively.” Aurora chimes in, stating, “Sometimes,” alluding to some emotional songwriting you’re sure to hear at the upcoming show. “Yeah, we kind of only showed a very certain aspect of our full sound that we’re starting to build. So really no one has seen everything,” says drummer Jake. 

When asked what she loved most about playing live, singer and guitarist Aurora captured what, to me, is the true beauty of UVM’s music scene: “I think there are a lot of people here that are genuinely invested in music. Not just as a thing that you listen to, but the culture of it and the emotion behind it. And so being in a place where you feel like there are a lot of people that are genuinely invested and excited about music and about new music really creates this environment where you feel like you can create something and have it be received, and people will feel something. And that’s the goal.”

I asked the band if they had any messages for the fans who voted for them in the preliminary round. Corby stated, “They’re not even fans. They’re just friends.” To me, that seemed to encapsulate what I know of Soap the Band pretty well. Just some talented friends with an infectious love for music and a deep desire to share it.

Each of these bands has worked hard to get this far and it’s paid off. Whoever you’re rooting for in the finale, be loud in that ballroom and let ‘em hear your love. While you’re at it show your love to the rest as well! A huge thanks goes to UPB for making this event possible every year and allowing us music lovers to revel in our university’s musical talent. I’ll see you all at the Battle of the Bands: Grande Finale!