Competitive concerts can bring out the best in bands, injecting fresh adrenaline into stagnant songs. But they can also be a drain on fans, whose attendance is essential in contests decided by crowd response. Once anything becomes mandatory, the thrill disappears. The Brick's Band Scramble eliminated the allegiance issue by creating new bands three weeks before the performance date. After a random drawing distributed musicians by instrument, the embryonic groups crafted three original songs. All of the participants turned in solid sets, with the Silver Shore scoring a narrow victory. The second Scramble in August was marred by artistic differences that led to bands with the life spans of fruit flies, but the initial offering worked both as an entertaining event and as a breeding ground for scenester staples.