Band’s walking on air after nationwide music contest glory

IPSWICH band Underline The Sky have been crowned winners of the rock category at this year’s Live and Unsigned Festival.

IPSWICH band Underline The Sky have been crowned winners of the rock category at this year’s Live and Unsigned Festival.

The UK’s best undiscovered talent took the stage at London’s IndigO2 – within the O2 arena – on Saturday after months of live auditions and heats, all looking to impress representatives from the music industry in the grand final. Indie band The Lottery Winners were crowned the overall champions.

Underline The Sky – who formed in January 2008 and last year won the Road to V competition, sharing the stage with the likes of The Ting Tings and Dizzee Rascal – have won an all-expenses-paid trip to India to play at the biggest festival in Asia, Independence Rock.

They will also join Rockstar Energy Drinks’ prestigious roster.

“We’d like to say a massive thank you to every single person who supported us throughout this competition - we didn’t even expect to get through the rounds that were ahead of us let alone end up winning such unbelievable prizes,” said James Hicks, who makes up the female-fronted pop-rock band with Bronwyn Cooper, Dan Oaten, Tom Bryce and Chiron Richardson-Todd.

“We’re already on a huge high after the weekend and it hasn’t even sunk in yet we’re going to be going to India. It’s truly incredible. I think I’ve already told nearly everyone I know, better get practising I guess,” he laughed.

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More than 10,000 acts entered this year’s contest, with the grand finalists performing in front of a judging panel which included legendary Slade frontman Noddy Holder, Radio 1’s Annie Nightingale, Kerrang’s Alex Baker and R’n’B star Shola Ama.

Chris Grayston, judge on the night and head of A&R at Future Music, said: “The standard this year was fantastic. The competition has grown year on year and this year has to be the biggest yet. It was a great end to a great year and I’m looking forward to next year’s competition.”

Live and Unsigned 2011 auditions begin in January; for more information visit

For solo singers, Open Mic UK starts this August; for more information visit

For more about Underline The Sky visit

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