The Showcase Sprint

This year’s CMJ Music Marathon has come and gone in its usual debaucherous rush. Last week’s five-day sprint of official and unofficial showcases and parties (day-, after-, etc.) was enough to exhaust even the most diehard of music fans, journalists, and photographers, but somehow we all made it out alive.

While we had our own sold-out showcase with partners Beyond Beyond is Beyond Records and Easy Apple at Arlene’s Grocery on the opening Tuesday night (10/16) of CMJ, TVD was fortunate enough to include among its many, many collective stops last week:

NYCTaper at CMJ 2012 at Cake Shop (10/18), a day party where we caught alt-country North Carolinians and recent Merge label signees Mount Moriah.

Notes From the Underground: Modular Recordings at CMJ at Ace Hotel (10/18), an event so low-key that I doubt many of the attendees in the hotel’s busy lobby had any idea that it was a CMJ-related event.

Vitalic Noise CMJ Launch Party at The DL (10/18), which featured the Miami Horror DJs in a body-to-body meltdown, accompanied by lazers.

Hype Machine Handpicked at CMJ, Presented by Sonos at Brooklyn Bowl (10/18), which included the “folktronic” Hundred Waters, a DJ set from electro-pop god Miike Snow, and indie rockers Foxygen, whom we saw again at the BV Showcase at Public Assembly the next day.

YTGvB x Forest Family at 285Kent (10/18), co-sponsored by Yours Truly, Gorilla vs. Bear, and its record label Forest Family, where we caught Cali lo-fi crooner Sam Flax.

Bleepy Bloop Fest 2.0 with Hipster Runoff and PopGun Booking at Glasslands (10/18), at which I finally got to see Neon Indian’s Alan Palomo as his DJ moniker Vega, along with more lazers, and fog.

Brooklyn Vegan Free Day Party at Public Assembly (10/19 and 10/20), mentioned previously, a two-day affair sponsored by BV, (initially free and then at least cheap) PBR and Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum, Poggled, who were live-uploading photos of attendees to Facebook, Mercy hangover prevention beverage (which contains 5000% of the daily value for thiamine, and I had three of them over the course of the day—is there such thing as thiamine poisoning?), and Raw Revolution organic live food bars.

This would be where we spent the majority of Friday, bouncing between two stages from CMJ-standouts the all-girl post-punk Savages to the youthful electro-pop of Sky Ferreira (pictured at top), whom I thought looked like a 20-year-old grunge princess, to many others.

Over the two days, we checked out indie-pop duo MS MR, who are currently supporting Grouplove on tour, new songs from art rock affair Braids, and, on BV Day 2, Copenhagen’s brooding Choir of Young Believers.

The FADER FORT Presented by Converse NYC at Converse Rubber Tracks (10/19 and 10/20) was actually a four-day affair, but we stood in on sets during the last two days, including Brooklyn shoegazers DIIV, DFA’s The Crystal Ark (Gavin Russom), and punk rock outfit Mr. Dream.

The most disappointing moment of CMJ was when I found out that Divine Fits was the surprise guest to close out the Fader Fort showcase on Saturday night—which I missed! I knew that the supergroup, comprising Britt Daniel from Spoon, Dan Boeckner of Wolf Parade/Handsome Furs fame, and Sam Brown of New Bomb Turks, would play a surprise show somewhere Saturday night, as they were playing at Webster Hall the following night. C’est la vie.

The Flowerbooking CMJ Showcase (10/19) and the Tumblr CMJ Showcase (10/20) at the Knitting Factory closed out both of our weekend nights at CMJ, where Devin Therriault of his cleverly named band Devin channeled Elvis Costello, and where we followed Canadian synth-pounders Doldrums, whom we’d seen at the BV Party on Friday.

Supercrush Studio, Greenpointers Blog and Carabella Present CMJ 2012 Matinee Showcase at Matchless (10/20) was one of my personal highlights of CMJ, as a large crowd from both Ra Ra Rasputin’s home turf of Washington, DC and guitarist Patrick Kigongo’s hometown of Queens cheered as the electro-pop four-piece offered a bunch of funky new tunes, including “Back Into the Mood.” This was punctuated by shoutouts from Kigongo to friends in the crowd, including—full disclosure—myself and former State Department bandmate Michael Medlock, who captured the video of old favorite “Forward” below. The band was delighted to catch “Forward” on radio waves in the van on their way home from CMJ, as DC101 Local Lix featured the song this week. Ra Ra embarks on a mini-tour today with Ringo Deathstarr and Dead Leaf Echo through Philly, DC, and Baltimore.

The Inland Empire Touring Showcase at Union Pool (10/20) featured Sinkane, who was definitely my own favorite discovery of CMJ. The “island-soul-funk” of Sinkane is the solo project of Yeasayer (and Caribou and of Montreal) drummer Ahmed Gallab. It was his birthday, and the crowd cheered as Gallab blew out candles on a cake on stage. He told Stereogum during CMJ that he’s played on his birthday for the past five years. Sinkane’s debut on DFA Mars just hit the shelves yesterday, so he has more to celebrate than just another trip around the sun.

It’s been a couple of days since we’ve been back from CMJ, and we’ve finally just recovered. It’s time to start training for next year’s Showcase Sprint now that we’ve demonstrated that we are all CMJ Music Marathon champions.

Photos: Geoff Leung | Ra Ra Rasputin photo: Jen Galatioto, Greenpointers

Foxygen at Public Assembly, 10/19

Murals at Public Assembly, 10/19

Figo at Public Assembly, 10/19

Deap Valley at Public Assembly, 10/19

Sky Ferreira at Public Assembly, 10/19

MS MR at Public Assembly, 10/19

Braids at Public Assembly, 10/19

DIIV at Fader Fort, 10/19

Devin at Knitting Factory, 10/19

The Crystal Ark at Fader Fort, 10/20

Sinkane at Union Pool, 10/20

This entry was posted in TVD New York City. Bookmark the permalink. Trackbacks are closed, but you can post a comment.

  • Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text
  • Alternative Text Alternative Text Alternative Text