Those of you who frequent the AbsolutePunk.net music forum should be familiar with a phenomena that has happened twice before: The Fantasy Band Draft. Ran by MEB Managing Editor Jack Appleby, the two fantasy drafts were wildly successful endeavors, earning over 100,000 combined page views, sparking great music discussion and getting the attention of several important figures, including The Gaslight Anthem’s Brian Fallon. We at MindEqualsBlown.net have decided to bring you pick-by-pick coverage of The 3rd Annual Fantasy Band Draft, as well as spotted analysis of the bands that will form from them.
This is our fourth special section on the draft, spotlighting picks #16-20.
Oberst’s simple melodies and sheer ability to weave ornate tapestries of instrumentation made him one of the safest bets as a first round selection. Coach and MEB staffer Caleb Dennis should be able to use Oberst’s knack of writing surefire heartstring-tugging hits to match him up with other suitable folk-minded musicians for what could turn out to be one of the more homespun groups of the draft.
PROS: He has major indie cred. CONS: He’s still not Bob Dylan.
A bluesy artist and major player in reviving the chill acoustic guitar trend, John Mayer brings some serious mainstream clout and name recognition value to MEB staffer Jacob Testa’s team. Usually a solo artist, Mayer will bring his laid-back vocal chops and soulful vibe to a full-band setting. That is, if he can play nice with other artists, share the spotlight, and check his media backlash at the front door. He’s no stranger to the league either, being picked in every draft and used as a major contributor to his bands’ sound.
PROS: He’ll get the girls. CONS: He’s an accused misogynist.
The first drummer picked in the draft needs no introduction. Voted the eighth best drummer of all time by Rolling Stone and a legend behind the skins for The Roots, Questlove has proven to be a worthy pick time and again, even if he’s stuck as bandleader for Jimmy Fallon. It’s unorthodox to pick a drummer in the first round, but Questlove is a rock-solid foundation for any rhythm section, but will need a strong lead singer and guitarist to help out. Last season, Quest teamed with Patrick Stump, Stevie Wonder and Flea for a second-place finish; can he win a title this year?
PROS: Stalwart behind the kit. CONS: Can do better than being on Jimmy Fallon.
Coheed and Cambria remains one of the strongest creative forces in the scene, and lead singer Claudio Sanchez will bring his unique vocal delivery and sheer creative prowess into a new band. But will his distinctive storytelling and progressive ethos be welcomed by new bandmates? Sanchez will need some like-minded musicians to keep the creative juices flowing in a new position. Sources say he will be used mainly for guitar and his electric stage presence. This rookie is certainly worthy of a first round selection, no matter what others may say about the squeaky vocals.
PROS: Has a one-of-a-kind voice. CONS: Might be best suited as a Coheed lifer.
Ah yes. Jesse Lacey. He of the Brand New fame, the brains behind such acclaimed albums as Deja Entendu and The Devil and God Are Raging Inside Me. Love him or hate him, his name alone is enough to garner votes from his legions of followers and is sure to bring his band into the forefront of the spotlight. Polarizing and already stirring up controversy on the draft forums, Lacey will be a pivotal deciding factor when it comes down to voting. Despite being the #1 pick of the first draft and a first round selection in draft two, his bands have never cracked the top ten; however, being available this late in the draft made this a near automatic pick.
PROS: Half of AbsolutePunk loves Jesse Lacey. CONS: Half of AbsolutePunk hates Jesse Lacey.