Liv rallies together a band, The Dream, to compete in the upcoming Stevens Point Battle of the Bands contest. Joey and Artie form a band too, but they can’t seem to agree on anything.
In the halls of Ridgewood High, Artie and Joey are texting somebody, and both reveal that they have been made aware of an upcoming Battle of the Bands. During some confessions both reveal that they were in a band with each other in middle school named "Acne," and had a local hit called "Pop the Pimple," but broke up because of Artie's egocentricity. Artie reveals that he wants to put the band back together, and Joey is more than eager to do so.
Liv gives Andie a bejeweled welding mask as a gift. She seeks to hang out with Andie alone, but then Holden approaches them, and due to her unwavering crush on him, she backs out. Maddie realizes this and approaches her twin, who confides those feelings. Willow wants to participate in the band battle and invites both of the Rooney twins, but Maddie turns her offer down. Liv joins in and realizes that Willows new fixation on drumming is due to her frustration over her unrequited love for Joey. Liv also recruits Andie as their bass player, and seeks to use it as an attempt to spend time with Andie without feeling like a third wheel in her relationship with Holden.
In the school gymnasium, Parker walks in searching for a school project while a sound crew is setting up a stage for the upcoming show, which includes a boxing/wrestling ring. He meets a woman named Jennifer, who requests a sound check on a microphone from him, and finds he does a fairly decent Johnny Nimbus imitation. The real Nimbus steps in behind him and though he's impressed he's still convinced that the original is better. Parker disagrees, and thinks a trained monkey can do the same job. Jennifer is impressed with the boy, and Nimbus decides that this particular Battle of the Bands will also be a Battle of the Emcees.
During their band practice, Andie decides that the name of the band should be "Liv and the Blowtorches," but Liv refuses to have her name included in the band's name, whatever it may be. Willow decides the name should be "The Dream" because she found it taped to the bass drum of the drum set she bought at a flea market. When it's revealed that Liv can't play an instrument to save her life, despite playing a guitar in the movie "The Funaways," they try to find someone else who can play. Unfortunately for Liv it turns out to be Holden.
Meanwhile, Joey and Artie are trying to put their own band together, which includes his minions, are all dressed in red jumpsuits, and decides to name the band "Red Heat." Joey despises the idea, leading to an argument between the two of them. Overhearing them, Karen intervenes with standard therapeutic advice, which somehow leads to a new name for the band; "Crispy Kitty." Karen also joins the band without permission from either of the rivals, and impresses both of them with her flute playing. Later on in the kitchen, Parker is busy testing his imitation of Nimbus' on air voice to Karen. Needless to say, she's amused and a bit befuddled by his antics.
Liv struggles to curtail her affection for the new lead guitarist as they practice. One glance at Holden, and she falls back onto Andie's keyboard. Later, she returns to the room wearing a black veil over her head, which puzzles the other band members, although Willow urges them to look past it. Holden approaches Liv during the middle of the first verse, and she stumbles again, getting both of them tangled up in the cord of his guitar, causing her veil to fall off and bringing their faces so close enough together that they almost seem like they're ready to kiss! Later that night, Maddie overhears Liv pretending to perform for her stuffed animals. She reveals to her twin that her desire for Holden is keeping her from performing, but Maddie tries to encourage her to put it aside for the sake of the rest of the band, citing her own experience playing basketball while Diggie is in the stands. Liv decides to rush to Ridgewood High with her sister.
That night at Ridgewood High, Johnny Nimbus starts announcing, and Parker interrupts, boasting of the line up for the show, and uses it as a jab against Mr. Nimbus over a recent grand theft auto incident involving his ex-wife's car. The first band to perform is Crispy Kitty, who originally sought to play a song called "Kitty Kitty Time," until Artie changed it at the last minute to a song about Artemis Prime. Joey becomes infuriated that the show includes a Peter Max-esque portrait of Artie lowered over the stage. Karen tries to intervene, and the band breaks up. She tries to fill the time with her flute, and is jeered by the crowd making Jennifer unplug the amplifiers. Johnny Nimbus decides to let Parker take over announcing the contest, but he is unable to because he only memorized the introductions to the band. As a result, Parker freezes on stage with the crowd booing at him. Nimbus steps in and takes over giving him an opportunity to let Parker add his own banter about the lame name of the previous band. Nimbus then introduces another band on stage. As they walk off together, Parker asks Johnny for advice on how to make boring events seem exciting, and Johnny reveals that his secret is that he's as shallow as he is handsome.
Liv's band gets on stage and dominates the night with a power-pop girls-night-out type anthem called "Say Hey," even impressing other bands that performed earlier. In spite of (or perhaps because of) having an unfair advantage with a lead singer who starred in the sitcom "Sing It Loud," The Dream wins the battle hands down. Prior to this, Johnny Nimbus offers to allow Parker to announce the winner, but he wisely declines the offer.
Sometime after the contest, Joey shows Artie a formerly proposed album cover that turns out to be derivative of the much more famous Meat Loaf album cover. Artie is so impressed that he urges another reunion, though he and Joey realize that the only member missing is Karen, who is busy at home serenading Liv's stuffed animal collection.
- Dove Cameron as Liv and Maddie Rooney
- Joey Bragg as Joey Rooney
- Tenzing Norgay Trainor as Parker Rooney
- Kali Rocha as Karen Rooney
- Benjamin King as Pete Rooney
- Emmy Buckner as Liv #2
- Shelby Wulfert as Maddie #2
- Victoria Moroles as Andie
- Jordan Fisher as Holden Dippledorf
- Jessica Marie Garcia as Willow
- Jimmy Bellinger as Artie
- Kurt Long as Johnny Nimbus
- Jennifer Candy as Jennifer
Holden: Hey Andie. Hey Liv.
Liv: Don't forget the stuff.
Parker: Monkey see, monkey did it.
Parker: Monkey can't, monkey fail!
- Benjamin King (Pete Rooney) did not appear in this episode.
- Parker reveals that Johnny Nimbus has a criminal record. He was evidently in jail briefly for "borrowing" his ex-wife's car.
- Use of the flute and other wind instruments as rock instruments isn't as geeky as it seems. Jethro Tull's lead singer Ian Anderson made it a trademark, and was popular throughout the 1970's and 1980's.
| To view the Band-A-Rooney gallery, click here.