Tales of Extreme Fandom #1 - Meet Contest Winners Plastallica

Presenting a sure-fire, five-step strategy for Rock Band domination:

  1. Pick an awesome name.
  2. Get together with your pals on weekends, consume beverages, play lots of Rock Band.
  3. Rack up killer scores on the song of your choice.
  4. Enter a radio contest.
  5. Win the contest, get glory and a new car.

Okay, so most of us have at least cleared the first two steps (especially the part about the beverages), and are working on the third. But only a select few have made it to the fifth step. So our hat is off to Plastallica (we told you the name was awesome), the Tucson, AZ Rock Band band who recently entered a radio-sponsored contest, knocked over the competition and went home with a prize Subaru.

If you don’t recognize Plastallica from the leaderboards, that’s because they never claimed to be hardcore, first-class gamers. “We started out pretty horrible,” admits bandmember Mike Cadrobbi, who switches off on guitar and bass. “We spent a lot of time getting frustrated and being totally angry at the game. But we were more in it for the social aspect; just spending a lot of time getting together on weekends, drinking and playing.” One song wound up emerging as a band favorite: Sonic Youth’s “Teenage Riot,” which they dig for the music as well as the playability. Before long they were able to rack up a million-plus points on it, and they played that song at a qualifying round at a car dealership in Tucson.

They did that one at the prelims and racked up a relatively meager 800,000 points; but this was enough to carry them to Los Angeles to play the finals. Before those happened, they devoted a couple weeks to some serious practice; settling on a setlist that included “Teenage Riot,” “Lazy Eye,” and “Give It Away”—the latter well known to gamers as one of the easiest song to rack up a mega-score on. “We still found we did best on ‘Teenage Riot’ We went home and played it 15 times in a row.”

Come the finals in Los Angeles, the band had to clear three different rounds: They went with “Teenage Riot” once again, and scored a mighty 1/5 million—enough to put them in the top three. The other two finalists—one from Phoenix, the other straight outta Compton—had both chosen “Give It Away” to qualify.

For the final round, nobody could repeat a song they’d played before, so everyone had to venture outside the comfort zone; the Compton band went with Interpol. But Plastallica’s strategy had paid off: Now “Give It Away” was up for grabs. “We ended up Gold-Starring it, so that proved we were still the superior band,” group member Nik Crosby says. One further round was still ahead: To determine which band member won the car, they had to face off against each other on “Spoonman.”

So who wound up driving the Subaru? As it turned out, nobody: Mike Cadrobbi won the “Spoonman” round, but they decided it would be fairest to sell the car and split the proceeds. So everyone in Plastallica came out with $4,600, a story to tell their kids, and the ability to play “Teenage Riot” by heart.


Plastallica with their prize Subaru