Round two of MTV's Musical March Madness tips off Monday (March 24), and after one week, the 2014 tournament is already proving to be one for the ages.
We started with 64 bands, and now the field has been whittled down to 32 ... as the quest for total supremacy — and one very toned trophy — continues. Voting in all second-round matchups is now underway, and polls will remain open until Monday, March 31 at noon ET.
Much like the actual NCAA tournament (farewell, Duke), #MMM has already seen plenty of upsets, as two #1 seeds were sent packing, and no shortage of nail-biting, down-to-the-wire battles ... and if we've learned anything from the first round, it's that every vote counts; so, if you want your favorites to survive to the Sweet 16, well, hit the polls early and often!
But before you do, let's recap the week that was ... and look ahead at the second-round matchups in #MMM 2014!
Top-seeded Fall Out Boy weren't one of the early favorites shown the door, as they crushed #16 St. Vincent to advance. They'll take on Jack Antonoff's Bleachers in round two, as the newly-formed sideproject proved they're no flash in the pan, outlasting #9 Grouplove in a back-and-forth opening-round battle.
#4 Blink-182 and #5 the Fray will face off in the other second-half matchup in the Midwest's top half, as both took down lower-seeded opponents (#13 Sleeping With Sirens and #12 Taking Back Sunday) in round one.
Things weren't quite as calm in the Midwest's lower half, as #2 OneRepublic was bounced by #15 Amy Lee and #7 Queens of the Stone Age were smashed by #10 5 Seconds of Summer. It's the Evanescence frontwoman versus the upstart Australians in round two, and much like Kentucky/Wichita State, this second-round battle certainly feels like something bigger. Whoever survives will draw the winner of #3 Walk The Moon vs. #6 the Killers in the Sweet 16.
The second-round matchups in the Midwest are:
» #1 Fall Out Boy vs. #9 Bleachers
» #4 Blink-182 vs. #5 the Fray
» #15 Amy Lee vs. #10 5 Seconds of Summer
» #3 Walk The Moon vs. #6 the Killers
Say goodbye to #1 Imagine Dragons, who [article id="1723876"]bow out in the first round once again[/article], this time at the hands of #16 Kesha, who rode the support of her fans (and plenty of Britney Spears fanatics, angry that she didn't make the tournament) to the upset. She'll take on #9 Panic! at the Disco in round two, as the perennial #MMM powerhouses blasted #8 Young The Giant in their opening-round matchup.
The other second-round battle in the West's top half pits #12 Pierce the Veil (who throttled Haim in round one) against #13 AFI, who shocked us all by outlasting heavily-favored #4 Avenged Sevenfold in the first round.
And while there were plenty of eye-opening first-round results, none could compare to #15 Echosmith's shocking victory over #2 Thirty Seconds To Mars, which meant that, one year after [article id="1705327"]making it to the title game[/article], Jared Leto and Co. are out after one round ... sad, but it certainly opens the door for #10 the Used who pasted #7 Beck and suddenly look like real threats. Meanwhile #MMM vets Linkin Park ripped Capital Cities, and #14 the Neighbourhood pulled the upset on #3 Foster The People. Needless to say, the bottom of this bracket is loaded.
The second-round matchups in the West are:
» #16 Kesha vs. #9 Panic! at the Disco
» #12 Pierce the Veil vs. #13 AFI
» #15 Echosmith vs. #10 the Used
» #11 Linkin Park vs. #14 the Neighbourhood
Imagine Dragons weren't the only #1 to go down in round one, as the East's top seed, Vampire Weekend, were also given the boot, this time at the well-manicured hands of #16 Palaye Royale. As #MMM's only unsigned band, PR entered the 2014 tourney untested, but after round one, they look poised to make a deep run in the field ... though it won't get any easier, as they take on #9 Coldplay — who held off #8 the 1975 in a tight opening-round contest — for a birth in the Sweet 16.
In the other top-half matchup, it's #5 Arctic Monkeys vs. #4 Bastille ... and though AM breezed through their first-round contest, Bastille were taken down to the wire by upset-minded underdogs #13 Electric Century, who came up just short in their tournament debut. Still, with on a single to their name, EC look like they could become tournament staples for years to come.
Things were equally tight in the East's bottom half, as #15 Phantogram shocked #2 Lorde in a close contest, and #7 Tegan and Sara survived a serious scare from #10 Bring Me The Horizon. #14 Bayside upset #3 Arcade Fire, and now have the honor of getting obliterated by Tokio Hotel in the second round, as the unstoppable German band rolled over #6 Korn by historic margins, and certainly seem to be the team to beat in this year's tournament.
The second-round matchups in the East are:
» #16 Palaye Royale vs. #9 Coldplay
» #5 Arctic Monkeys vs. #4 Bastille
» #15 Phantogram vs. #7 Tegan and Sara
» #11 Tokio Hotel vs. # 14 Bayside
At least there was one region where normalcy reigned: #1 Paramore handled #16 American Authors with ease, and they'll take on #8 Daft Punk in round two, as the 'bots took care of #9 Disclosure in the first round.
Fourth-seeded the Black Keys also held serve, taking down #13 Rixton, and #12 A Day To Remember upset #5 Cage The Elephant, setting up a second-round battle that pits tournament vets against newcomers looking to shock the world once again.
It was almost chalk in the South's, uh, southern half, as #2 Kings Of Leon blew out #15 Against Me!, but #10 We Are The In Crowd upset #7 We The Kings in another epic first-rounder; the two bands meet for the first time in round two. Meanwhile #3 Foo Fighters withstood a late charge from #14 New Politics, and #6 the Dead Weather took care of #11 Passenger, meaning that Ed Sheeran's dreams of a sorta-repeat as champion are officially over.
The second-round matchups in the South are:
» #1 Paramore vs. #8 Daft Punk
» #4 the Black Keys vs. #12 A Day To Remember
» #2 Kings of Leon vs. #10 We Are The In Crowd
» #3 Foo Fighters vs. #6 the Dead Weather
So who will survive to the Sweet 16? That's up to you! Second-round voting is now underway in #MMM, and if your favorites are still alive, you can guide them to the 2014 title ... or, if your band lost, what better way to get some revenge than voting in round two?!? Polls will remain open until Monday, March 31 at noon ET.
MTV's Musical March Madness heads to the second round! Vote in all matchups now at MMM.MTV.com, and spread the word on Twitter using the hashtag #MMM