After four weeks and 10 sets, the Irish Harp Pub has crowned New Rising Sun as 2023’s Battle of the Bands winner, gifting the musicians $1,000 and a contract to play regularly at the pub.
The trio of David Bravetti, Jeff Contini and Mike Vukovic returned after their stellar performance during week two and stole the show at Monday night’s finale with songs like “All These Things That I’ve Done” and “Irish Pub Song,” maintaining high energy and audience participation throughout.
“We are absolutely very excited. It’s surreal almost. It still hasn’t sunken in yet,” said vocalist and bongo player David Bravetti.
“Our attitude going in was that it would be more of an exhibition than a competition,” added Contini.
“Going into it we would’ve been satisfied to even participate, so this is just a cherry on top.”
The competition was judged by guests in the pub, voters online, as well as a panel of musicians, including Lindsey O’Connell of the O’Deadlys.
She explained how New Rising Sun took the win and what made them the perfect choice for the Harp.
“It was a lot. Consistency, some amazing vocals, crowd participation was a big deal.”
“Seeing how many people were smiling and engaged in that performance put them over the edge,” added O’Connell.
The other competitors, Spared No Expense and Admiral, placed second and third respectively, each putting on entertaining and skilful sets.
New Rising Sun will begin their contract playing at the Irish Harp beginning in March and Bravetti said the band is looking forward to entertaining at the iconic venue.
“I love the fact that there’s no TVs in here, no distractions. Everyone is dialled in and, when you’re up there, it makes all the difference.”