After scouting the U.S. to find the most promising unsigned bands, Billboard found three of the northwest's best and your votes picked a finalist: Hotels! The band hit the road headed for Las Vegas in a car provided by Chevy to compete at our May 18 Battle of the Bands concert against the finalists from the other five regions. Read about who won and watch the whole Battle of the Bands live showdown here. Scroll down to read a Battle of the Bands Q&A with Hotels, hear some music, and more.
Scan the code above with your smartphone to watch a short video from our Battle of the Bands finalists and find out if you've won a trip to the 2012 Billboard Music Awards!
Synthed-up Seattle indie band Hotels revels in its 'underdog'-ness.
Describe your sound and your audience in your own words.
A soundtrack to an imaginary film. We make music for star-crossed lovers, dancing intellectuals, and people who are as obsessed with movies as we are.
Tell us about your first gig ever -- just how awkward was it? And how has your live show evolved since then?
We actually had a decent crowd, but we were a bit stiff and only had four songs so we had to draw the show out as much as we could with awkward stage banter. Since then, our shows have become much more frenetic, and the stage banter has gotten marginally better.
What's the strangest thing anyone has ever said about your band?
A lot of times people will claim they hear an 'obvious influence' in our music and it might be someone we've never even heard of, let alone listen to. They also sometimes hear instruments in the music that aren't there.
Why should you win this competition?
We're going to win because we're the outside man in this competition, and people love a good underdog story. We're going to win because people love pleasant surprises and our music is full of them. We're going to win because we have something that's both familiar and different at the same time. And we're going to win because any time we perform, we will melt faces.
What's your next project?
An EP called "Cinemascope."
If your band had to come up with a plan for total world domination in the next 10 seconds, what would it be?
We're going to make a bubblegum dance-pop hit called "Saturday," with a YouTube video featuring talking babies, kittens, puppies and dolphins all playing together, a triple rainbow and a Charlie Sheen cameo.
Interview by Dan Weiss
*Click a region to to see the other finalists in the competition.