Everything you ever wanted to know about the Band Madness! tournament

BAND MADNESS is a March-Madness style, single elimination tournament of pop/rock bands where the winners are determined strictly by fan voting. There are 512 artists from various decades and genres, all battling it out to determine once and for all which band is the voted-for-the-most-est!

The rules of voting are simple: vote for who you like better. That’s it. Not for who you think you should vote for, not for who’s more historically significant, etc. Just vote for who you like better, then go ahead and post some inflammatory comments about bands other people voted for. After a couple days, the voting wraps up, we move on to the next bracket, and a whole new round of voting and inflammatory comment-making begins. Simple enough?

In case you missed it, Band Madness 2006 quickly took on a life of its own, boasting tens of thousands of visitors per day over the course of the tournament, including a peak of over 500,000 visitors in June 2006. Band Madness has appeared on College humor.com, VH1’s Best Week Ever blog, Stereogum.com, and literally hundreds of fan sites from around the world, all uniting together to insult Oasis fans in dozens of languages. Last year, visitors posted more than 2500 user comments in the first week of June alone, though only about 40% of them involved calling another band or fans of that band ‘gay.’

Nine Inch Nails went on to win the competition last year, receiving more than 10,000 votes in a three-week span (albeit with more than a little help from the massive online forum theninhotline.net), defeating Pink Floyd in a Finals blowout. The commotion even prompted Trent Reznor himself to comment on the site, “ Thanks for all the votes. I’m not sure what this says about NIN, but I guess we have some rabid fans out there on the ‘net.”

This year, there’s a revamped field of 512, and with NIN officially retired as “ultimate champion of everything,” the tournament is wide open. Go ahead and vote, feel free to toss some comments up, and by all means, please help spread the word around. As we saw last year, anything can happen in this thing, so by all means, tell your friends. The more, the merrier.

On second thought — miiiight want to keep the Oasis fans out of it this time.