And The Final 14 Bands Are…

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Virgin Mobile's Road to V in partnership with Sony Ericsson

The standard of entries to this year's Road to V was incredible, the fourteen finalists all have a great sound, we're really impressed. We'll just have to wait and see who the fortunate two are - I wish them all the best of luck.

Nearly 2,500 bands applied for this year's Road to V competition - and they've been whittled down to just 14 finalists, two of which will get to open the V Music Festival and play to an audience of thousands in Stafford and Chelmsford on August 16th and 17th. The competition was fierce this year, with a huge variety of unsigned band s entering, spanning all musical genres including guitar rock, punk, electro, R&B, dance, ska, indie.… the list goes on.

And the final 14 are:

Imperial Leisure, Flashguns, Idle Lovers, Mama Shamone, The More Assured, Walk. Don't Walk. Matt Trakker, The Wireless, Married To The Sea, Alexis Blue, The Rebs, Situationists, KC and The Shallow Call.

The unsigned band s are now set to perform in a series of live gigs at Carling Academy Liverpool on 7th & 8th May and Carling Academy Islington,13th, 14th & 15th May, in front of an expert panel which this year includes Dirty Pretty Things frontman Carl Barât, A&R man Sav Remzi, Mags Revell, the promotor of V Festival, NME's Mark Beaumont and Paul Samuels from Crown Music Management. They'll be critiquing the acts and making their recommendations as to which bands will get to open the V Music Festival this summer, in Chelmsford and Stafford, on the 16th and 17th August.

Each gig will be broadcast this summer on Channel 4 from June and the expert panel will then decide who wins with the help of viewer reviews - the winning bands then get the chance of a lifetime to open one of the UK's biggest festivals.

Since 2004, Road to V has nurtured great new talent, with bands such as The Young Knives, Bombay Bicycle Club and The Brightlights all opening the festival and going on to major success including Mercury Music nominations and film careers.

You can keep up with the competition on http://www.roadtov.com, where there will be exclusive backstage footage, music downloads, message-boards, forums and interviews with the unsigned band s. If you've got Virgin Media at home, then the super-fast broadband connection will get you there even quicker. Staying with Virgin Media, if you're a total music fan, you can check out the last four years of Road to V at Virgin TV Music on Demand - channel 300 for those in the know and Virgin customers.

Even on the road you can download all the cool stuff, as Sony Ericsson, following on the success of last year, are Virgin Mobile's official partner for Road to V and the V Music Festival. Simply click onto Virgin Mobile Bites on your Sony Ericsson handset and enter a world of music on the move.

Rosie Newey, head of music sponsorship at Virgin Media said, "The standard of entries to this year's Road to V was incredible, the fourteen finalists all have a great sound, we're really impressed. We'll just have to wait and see who the fortunate two are - I wish them all the best of luck."

For more information please contact:

Issued by onlinefire PR on behalf of Virgin Mobile:

James Fell: 0207 927 7520 or james.fell(at)onlinefirepr.com

Virgin Mobile:     

0845 600 6272 or press.office(at)virginmobile.com
Simon Dornan, 07847 279666 or simon.dornan(at)virginmobile.com

Notes to Editors

The V Festival
V Festival is now in its 12th year and was the first UK festival to operate over two days and swap line-ups overnight. Since 96, some of the world's greatest performers have graced the stages including Radiohead, Morrissey, The Strokes, Coldplay, Red Hot Chilli Peppers, Blur, Faithless, Razorlight and Kylie.

Virgin Mobile
At Virgin Mobile we love music. A lot of people might bandy around the word "love", but we really do mean it… and we've got the goods to back it up!

Music is at the heart of what we're about, and it's what our customers love too. That's why we put our money where our mouth is and get involved by supporting a whole host of live music events… from small, intimate gigs and grass roots talent competitions, right up to V Festival.

We're proud to be the telecoms sponsor of the Academy Music Group (AMG) - the UK's leading owner and operator of live music and club venues, with a network that attracts over three million gig-goers every year.

Carling Academy Brixton, AMG's legendary south London venue, has scooped NME Best Venue 2007, Vodafone Live Music Awards Best Live Music Venue 2006 and the Time Out Venue of the Year 2004.

And, how could we forget the award winning* V Festival? Virgin Mobile is about to take on its ninth year of sponsoring the world-famous weekender, and it's getting better all the time. We have an army of Virgin Mobile Angels who help lug your beers to your tent (and will even put it up for you). We let all festival goers (no matter what network they're on) charge up their phones at our recharge points and we even dish out free line-up info via Bluetooth.

But that's not all, Virgin Mobile's Road to V in partnership with Sony Ericsson is back in 2008 and for the fifth year running we're giving two lucky bands the chance to open the V Festival.

A bit more about Virgin Mobile…
Virgin Mobile is the UK's largest mobile virtual network operator and uses T-Mobile's network. Since its launch in November 1999, Virgin Mobile has attracted more than four million customers.
Virgin Mobile is part of the Virgin Media group. The group is the first to be able to offer `quadruple play' to customers: mobile, phone, broadband and TV.

Virgin Mobile is part of Virgin Media - the UK's leading entertainment and communications company. Virgin Media is the UK's only provider of quad play services - superfast broadband, digital and on-demand TV, home phone and mobile. As the UK's largest residential broadband provider, it currently offers first-class broadband speeds of up to 20Mb (with plans to roll-out a 50Mb service later this year). Plus, Virgin Media has the most advanced TV on demand service, with over 1,000 music videos and over 500 movies available to its customers.

V Festival was winner of Best Festival Line-up at the 2007 UK Festival Awards

Virgin Media
Virgin Media is an innovative and pioneering UK entertainment and communications business. For the first time consumers can get everything they need from one company - the UK's only quad play of TV, broadband, phone and mobile plus the most advanced TV on demand service available, the UK's first high definition TV service and V+, our high specification personal video recorder. We're the UK's largest residential broadband provider, the largest virtual mobile network operator and the second largest provider of pay TV and home phone.

Virgin Media owns two content businesses - Virgin Media Television (VMTV) and sit-up. VMTV owns seven entertainment channels - Virgin1, Living, Living 2, Bravo, Bravo 2, Challenge and Trouble - and is a 50% partner in UKTV which consists of nine channels including Dave, UKTV Gold and UKTV History. Sit-up runs retail TV channels bid tv, price-drop tv and speed auction tv.

Virgin Media is the largest Virgin company in the world and has almost 10 million customers. To find out more visit http://www.virginmedia.com/presscentre.

Sony Ericsson
Sony Ericsson Mobile Communications was established as a 50:50 joint venture by Sony and Ericsson in October 2001, with global corporate functions located in London. The company serves the worldwide communications market with innovative and feature-rich mobile phones, accessories and PC-cards, and it has R&D sites in Europe, Japan, China, India and America. Sony Ericsson is the title sponsor of the Women's Tennis Association, and works with the Association to promote the Sony Ericsson WTA Tour in over 80 cities during the year. For more information, please visit http://www.sonyericsson.com

For media information please contact:
Matt Beavis or Jo Fiddy, Brando: 0207 419 7000

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