The underdogs definitely had their day in the first round of MTV's Musical March Madness tournament, running roughshod over the heavily favored higher seeds and sending championship contenders like Mumford & Sons, the Foo Fighters and the Black Keys to early, unexpected exits.
And 11th-seeded Semi Precious Weapons definitely got in on the action, giving #6 Fun. the boot in the opening round — no small feat considering they currently have the #1 song in the country. And that was very good news to frontman Justin Tranter's mother, who is taking this year's MMM really seriously.
"My mom likes to text me about it; she's very concerned," Tranter told MTV News. "She doesn't realize that it's just for fun. She thinks if I don't win, I'm going to get killed or something, like it's the Hunger Games."
Hey, you never know. Still, Tranter said that he's nearly as thrilled as his dear, sweet mother to have knocked off Fun., mostly because it speaks to the undying support SPW's fanbase has bestowed upon them.
"We haven't released new music for about two years, we've played some shows here and there, but we haven't really toured for about a year," he said. "And, of course, Fun. are amazing, and they have the #1 song in the f---ing world right now, so we were like, 'Oh, there's no way we're winning this round.' But our fans are f---ing awesome, and they're crazy. ... They are so loyal and faithful and determined, it's pretty amazing."
And from the looks of things, SPW's tourney success might continue. They currently lead #3 Florence and the Machine by a solid margin in round two, and if they can hold on — polls close Sunday at midnight ET — they'll march on to the Sweet 16, where MMM powerhouses (and 2010 champions) Coheed and Cambria likely await. And though he's cautious, Tranter believes that, thanks to his band's fans, SPW have a pretty good chance at shocking the world once again.
"We're underdogs in the whole damn thing. ... Coheed's fans are no joke, and they don't give a f---, so that one will be difficult even for our beautiful Weapons to win, but they're sure as hell going to try," he said. "[They] are so amazing, and [I hope they'll] keep voting. Let's win this f---ing thing, because why the hell not?"
MTV's 2012 Musical March Madness tournament has reached the second round. Voting runs until midnight ET on Sunday, March 25, and winners are determined by fan votes, so if your favorite act is still alive, it'll be up to you to guide them to glory. You can rally the troops on Twitter using the hashtag #MMM or by downloading one of our custom badges — but get ready, it only gets more difficult from here on out.