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“The Tax Authorities” from Bainbridge Island, Wash.-based Avalara, with lead singer Juliet ‘Jules’ Deggendorfer, took home first place at the inaugural GeekWire Battle of the Geek Bands at the Showbox Sodo.

What happens when you combine geeks and rock-and-roll?

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Double Down’s vocalists at the Battle of the Geek Bands.

Well, one badass party.

Such was the scene Friday night at the Showbox SoDo, where four rockin’ bands from Seattle-area tech companies took the stage at GeekWire’s inaugural Battle of the Geek Bands.

Seven employees from Double Down Interactive got the night rolling with an awesome rendition of Dead Flowers from The Rolling Stones. Our celebrity panel — made up of KEXP DJs Morgan Chosnyk and Larry Rose, KEXP marketing director and former Harvey Danger band member Rob Knop, and Maldives lead singer Jason Dodson — gave the Double Downers props for pulling off original songs.

Up next was “The Packet Droppings,” from Extra Hop. This band blew everyone away with their rendition of Billy Idol’s “Rebel Yell.” Knop even said that the TPDs were too good for the competition.

Then came some good ol’ blues from “The Tax Authorities,” out of Bainbridge Island-based Avalara. This group was polished, and the lead singer, Juliet ‘Jules’ Deggendorfer, knocked it out of the park.

Last but certainly not least,’s Severity 2 hit the stage and opened up with a fantastic performance of Coldplay’s “Yellow.” Our judges loved this group.

IMG_9743 copyWhen it was all said and done, the judges crowned Avalara as champion, with the tax software-makers winning the first-ever Battle of the Geek Bands. They took home five suite tickets to the Anheuser Busch suite for the Seahawks game against Tampa Bay next month. The runner-up award — suite tickets to the Trans-Siberian orchestra show — went to the Double Down band.

We were also impressed by the creativity of our Costume Contest participants. Though Neo and Trinity from the Matrix looked awesome, it was Breaking Bad’s Walter White walking away with the first place prize.

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Breaking Bad’s Walter White took home first place in the Costume Contest.

The Battle of the Geek Bands and Costume Contest were a great way to cap off an action-packed day at the Showbox, where we also held our big Startup Day event and heard several impressive, inspiring talks from industry leaders and CEOs.

We’ll have more content on GeekWire in the coming days from Startup Day, so stay tuned. A big thanks to our sponsors for helping to make Startup Day and the Battle of the Geek Bands after party possible: Wave Business SolutionsMozKnollDouble Down Interactive, the Museum of History and IndustryAvalaraWilson Sonsini Goodrich & RosatiBudweiserAmazon Web ServicesHughes Media Law GroupPerkins CoieCar2GoCobalt9Mile LabsTicketmaster and TechStars (which held its Demo Day the day before).

And of course, thanks to everyone for coming out and joining us Friday.

Click on any image below to open our photo gallery from the after-party.

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