When we issued Figment Challenge #3 we had no idea who would accept the challenge or what kind band bio entries we would receive.  If you remember, we asked you to create a band bio for the fake band called Other Industrial Minerals.  We supplied the name, we were looking for you to supply everything else about them.  The challenge was to write a bio that really gave us an essence of the band and made us want to become a fan.  In the end, we didn’t get that many entries, but maybe that was a blessing, because it was a hard challenge, not only to accept but to judge as well!  The Top 3 picks were all different, but we decided in the end that the winner had that little something special that made us want to see where this player could take Other Industrial Minerals, and that was a clear indication that we were fans.  But enough about our thought process for now, we’ll provide you with more detail on our decision at the end, in the meantime please enjoy reading the winning bio and the 2 runners up because they’re all good:

Winning Bio:

It was a dark and stormy night.  And by dark and stormy, I mean sunny and two in the afternoon, but I digress.

The band’s story begins on September 7th, 1987, with the birth of brothers Michael and Aaron Koltz, but no one cares about this. Fast forward to 2006, and the brothers are living in a studio apartment on the outskirts of London. It’s a simple means of existence, ‘cause neither of the boys are really good at anything, even dropping out of university, but they do know a thing or two about music…and cheeto’s. Anyway, about the music; Michael got a job as a waiter to pay for some mics and other equipment to teach himself to sing like his heroes, Greg Lake and Geoff Tate. Aaron took a simpler path, stealing a bass, because, well the guitars were too well guarded. Making the best out of the situation, he taught himself how to play it. One day they were jamming in their apartment, doing nothing in particular but making noise, (“No officer, I can’t think of why anyone would file a noise complaint against us.”), when out of nowhere came a loud, metallic bang. Thinking nothing of it, the boys continued to smash away, however, the banging intensified. Michael said to Aaron, “That’s kind of catchy.” Aaron’s reply was, “I don’t care, it’s a nuisance, I’m not causing it, I’m shutting this guy up.” So, Aaron kicks down the door, (Did I mention Aaron has anger management issues?), and storms toward the source of the banging, which is coming from a neighboring apartment. Aaron is about to Chuck Norris the door off its hinges, when he notices, by means of kicking it, that it’s a 3 inch thick steel door, that appears to be stolen from a military cache, and that it’s the source of the banging. The door suddenly opens, gull wing style, nearly knocking Aaron over the balcony, (They’re on the second floor), and there stands a short guy, twirling drumsticks in his hands. Aaron, regaining his composure, and Michael, once he’s finished laughing his ass off, both ask the same question, “And you would be?” The short man replies, “I am Dane Wiley, drummer of the Dave Wiley Extravaganza and Milkshake Emporium Experience, and you guys are the Industrial Dicks who were interrupting my daytime tele.” To which Aaron angrily responds, “Well, you’re a Mineral!” Both Michael and Dave shout, “What does that even mean?” Being unable to explain himself, Aaron gives up and starts sulking. Michael meanwhile was intrigued by the 5 foot 2 inch man infront of him, who has just managed to shut his brother up, something he has failed at for the last 19 years. “So you’re a drummer, eh?” “Yeah.” “And that’s why you were banging out that sweet stuff on your door?” “You thought it sounded good?” “Yeah, tell you what, come over and jam with us, let’s see if we can make something happen.” That was the beginning. Dave and the brothers jammed together over the next two years, until in 2008, they decided to expand. So, they posted a video of one of their jam sessions, (aptly titled, jam to find some person to jam with us), and added a disclaimer which asked for interested responders to add their music over the video to see if it fit. They got a grand total of 3 responses: Austin Alexson, a Boston-based keyboard teacher and self described Pink Floyd Historian; Devin Zając, a blind Polish Canadian guitar whiz (how he found the youtube video has still never been fully explained); and Darryl Styx, a singer from London. They managed to all fly to London (except Darryl, who just walked), and the band was formed. As for the name, Aaron and Dave thought back to that faithful first encounter, and decided on Industrial Minerals. Devin, however, thought that Other Industrial Minerals had a better ring to it, and the name stuck. So with two singers, a keyboardist, a perpetually angry bassist, a very short drummer, and a blind guitarist, the band took off for the sure fire success that they had been told would be granted to them by a Magic 8-Ball, and two horoscopes.

Bio by:  algoreyou

1st Runner Up:

Other Industrial Minerals
Genre – Rock…(obviously)
Tag Line – Girls love Diamonds, Artists love Marble, we are…

The origins of Other Industrial Minerals can be traced back to the summer of 2007 when frontman Pete Moss formed Slag Aggregate, a noise-pop band in Grand Forks, North Dakota. By December they had become a favorite at college bars and frat parties on the UND campus, but as May approached, egos and musical differences caused a fissure in the band. They split up and Moss, along with drummer Al Unite, headed south east to the musical Valhalla of the Twin Cities where they played, both together and separately, in numerous bands over the next few years.

In the summer of 2010, Unite was drumming in a bizarre ethereal blues collective Fuller’s Earth when he met up with Moss again at the Jundland Club. At the time the various members of Fuller’s Earth were becoming more and more tied to other bands and Unite wanted out. They started jamming and writing and as Fuller’s Earth was disintegrating, Moss and Unite’s goals solidified.

Initially, they worked as a combo  – guitar and drums, but eventually they wanted to flesh out their sound a bit and recruited bassist Kay Olin from Gypsum, a funk jazz project that was wowing crowds every Thursday night at the Cabooz. Newly christened Other Industrial Minerals, the three recorded an EP/demo “Diatomite!” with Olin’s boyfriend Mica Feldspar on keyboards and assorted percussion.

By this time they had caught the attention of a certain nameless Twin Cities music icon and their fate was sealed. They started playing small clubs like the Entry and the 400 Bar, but as the crowds grew, the need for larger venues grew with it. After placing 4th in the 2011 City Pages Picked to Click list of best new bands in the Twin Cities, their show at the Turf Club had reveler’s crowding the sidewalk outside the club trying to catch a glimpse through the front window, if just to say “I was there when…”.

Their sound, (at it’s core 70’s guitar rock, but with decidedly spacy, jazzy undertones) was just what the Twin Cities music scene was looking for. They continued to play to packed houses and eventually graduated to the Main Room (First Ave.) and ultimately the Jundland Club. In January they will enter the Bassment to record their debut full length with plans for an extensive road trip to bring their show to the rest of the country.

Line up:
Pete Moss = Guitar, Vox
Kay Olin = Bass, Vox
Al Unite = Drums
Mica Feldspar = Keys, Congas, Shakers and other noise makers

Bio by:  theHoseman

2nd Runner Up:

Some people are born to be stars. Other people study stars and hope to see one be born. Such is the case with Mark Lovedale, PHD.

Before becoming the lead guitarist and driving force behind Austin’s own, OTHER INDUSTRIAL MINERALS, Lovedale was the youngest person ever accepted into NASA’s space program at just 19 years old. Then again, Lovedale graduated with a PHD in Astrophysics from the University of Arizona by the time he was 18 years old.

Think Doogie Howser in space. But with a hard-on for Jimmy Page and Randy Rhodes.

That’s right, not only is Lovedale a gifted scientist, but a cracker-jack guitarist with balls the size of Uranus.

After dropping out of the space program (what?!!) at the age of 21, Lovedale formed OTHER INDUSTRIAL MINERALS with college buddy and bassist, Ryan Winthrop. It was only a matter of time before they found their band’s voice in auto-mechanic turned lead vocalist, Trevor Prout. Drummer, “Grand” Stan Babbitt lived upstairs from Prout and went from keeping him up at nights to keeping him up at nights with a crowd of screaming fans.

OTHER INDUSTRIAL MINERALS quickly skyrocketed to fame on the Austin music scene and all but reinvented the hard rock genre with their use of double-kick-drum ferocity and harmonizing guitar sounds.

This band is shooting straight for the stars. The only question that remains is: can their audience hold on tight enough to follow them through the Heavens?

OTHER INDUSTRIAL MINERALS are:

Trevor Prout – Vocalist

Ryan Winthrop – Bassist

Stan Babbitt – Drummer

Mark Lovedale – Guitarist

Bio by:  Raybo

So now that you’ve read all three, let us explain our decision.  We chose algoreyou’s bio because it grabbed our interest, and ultimately because it was, for lack of a better word, cheeky.  While theHoseman and Raybo provided us with more conventional bio’s, algoreyou went for a back story approach that was more story than background and in doing so made the band more personal and yet elusive at the same time.  While it may have been a little more scattershot in format than the other two finalists’ entries, it made us want to find out more, to wonder what the band’s first album would be called or imagine what their cover art would look like.  That’s what a good bio should do, it should make you want to seek out a band, and algoreyou’s did.  Plus you gotta love the line “So with two singers, a keyboardist, a perpetually angry bassist, a very short drummer, and a blind guitarist, the band took off for the sure fire success that they had been told would be granted to them by a Magic 8-Ball, and two horoscopes.”

Now that’s not to say that theHoseman or Raybo didn’t create good bio’s too, because they did.  We chose thehoseman as our second runner up because his bio had such great detail on how the band came together and because we all had to admit that we’d love to see Slag Aggregate get back together!  Great name.  But I digress…

Raybo’s bio was also good and quite funny, but we felt it read a bit too much like a press release and less like a bio per se.  I know splitting hairs, but hey that’s what you have to do when you’re judging these things…it’s not as easy as it looks you know.  We also LOVED the line  “Think Doogie Howser in space. But with a hard-on for Jimmy Page and Randy Rhodes.” Now that’s a tag line!  Raybo, stay tuned because a tag line Challenge is on it’s way!

So congratulations to algoreyou for accepting and winning Figment Challenge #3.  We will be crediting his account with 5,000 pieces of lucre and he has the right to create “Other Industrial Minerals” on Figment.  theHoseman will be receiving 3,000 pieces of Lucre for finishing 2nd, and Raybo will receive 1,500 pieces of Lucre for finishing 3rd.  Thanks to all who entered and stay tuned for the next Figment Challenge!

2 Responses to “Figment Challenge #3 Met – Meet Other Industrial Minerals”

  1. theHoseman Says:

    Nice work algoreyou & raybo! Diggin both of your efforts. Algoreyou, you write in a quirky, stream of consciousness style that I always enjoy. Can’t wait to see Other Industrial Minerals come to life on Figment thru your hands.

  2. Raybo Says:

    That was fun. I wish I hadn’t scrawled the thing on the back of a cocktail napkin and actually used the appropriate vessel for such an endeavor: groupie cleavage.

    I want a rematch. I can do better.

    Way to go, gentlemen. Way to go.

    PS I love Figment almost as much as I love toasted strawberry Pop-Tarts. Almost.

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