Fresh student talent dominates the Rat

By Kimberly Ilkowski
Correspondent

The Rathskeller was bursting with energy on Friday, Feb. 7, for student band night, featuring three bands that all brought their own unique style to the stage.

Event Horizon plays covers of Led Zeppelin and Nirvana at the Rat. (Photo by  Kimberly Illowski)
Event Horizon plays covers of Led Zeppelin and Nirvana at the Rat. (Photo by Kimberly Illowski)

The first act, Funktimus Prime, was impossible to ignore — wearing matching bow ties, pastel pink suit vests and royal blue dress shirts.

The trio consisted of keyboardist Chris Golon, a senior mechanical engineering major, drummer Alex Manoksi, a senior electrical engineering major, and Eddie Spencer, a senior computer engineering major playing the electronic wind instrument — something many in the audience had never seen.

“It’s a MIDI controller that lets me play basically any sound imaginable,” Spencer said.

The band’s performance was entirely instrumental and showcased their electronic, upbeat and funky sound.

For senior biology major Sarah Mereby, this was her first show experience at the Rat.

“I actually came out to support my boyfriend and his band,” she said after they wrapped up a 45-minute set.

The next act to take the stage was Event Horizon, led by Jake Perlman, a junior biology major, on vocals and rhythm guitar, Thomas Sarris, also a junior biology major, on lead guitar, Kyle Bennion, a junior history major, on drums, and Dom Portera, a freshman interactive multimedia studies major, on bass.

The progressive rock/metal band powered through a covers set featuring songs by Led Zeppelin, Incubus, Nirvana, Mastodon, Opeth and Dream Theater.

Freshman elementary education major Robert Kinloch came out to see his floormate in action.

“It was awesome to see Dom and his band perform,” Kinloch said. “It was a lot of fun and cool to see a different side of Dom you wouldn’t see just by saying hi to him or passing by him on campus.”

The show certainly gave the audience a new appreciation for the musicians.

The show wrapped up with indie rock unit, The Hot Sweats, who have been performing in bands together since they were in middle school.

The band, made up of Matthew Pignatore, a senior marketing major, on guitar and vocals, Nick Salandra, a senior civil engineering major at Rutgers University, on drums, and Pat Morin, on bass, rocked all original material for the crowd.

“We have a bit of pop and a bit of punk in us,” Pignatore said of the band’s sound.

Check out the bands’ pages on Facebook to learn more.

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