Pictured above: Richie Follin of Guards
We're a bit busy throwing together some magic for our own CMJ event
, but we found some time to run a bit of the marathon last night. The funny thing about CMJ is that New York is so active and expansive, you can barely tell anything out of the ordinary is happening. But look closer, and you'll see gaggles of those shiny laminates traveling in herds from crowded clubs to waiting in lines at other crowded clubs, all in the name of discovering new music.
During the day, we paid a quick visit to the KEXP live sessions happening at the ACE Hotel to shoot Portugal. The Man
, and more importantly, lead singer John Gourley's signature tri-color beanie.
The evening began with a visit to Webster Hall to see The Postelles
. The band has gotten considerably sharper since their visit to our Rockwood sessions last CMJ
, but no less fun. Daniel Balk's big stage swagger really amps up the band's crunchy sound (now with more guitar solos). The crowd swelled to impressive numbers (I'm assuming) for the headliner, Liverpool punksters The Wombats... but the room seemed to know plenty of Postelles tunes as well, dancing and grooving along at the behest of the band. Classics like "Stella" and "White Night" were served up with a peppering of new material.
Afterwards, a trip to the Lower East Side was in order (the original home of CMJ), to catch We Were Promised Jetpacks
at Mercury Lounge, which, naturally, we completely missed. It's next to impossible to see everything, with approximately eight bazillion shows occurring at once, all overlapping and perpetually running off schedule. After a brief visit to Arlene's Grocery for a Canadian music showcase (The Reason
was playing during our drink), we stopped off at Piano's to check out Guards
, and that's our pick of the evening.
Guards' Richie James Follin is buddies with Caroline Polachek (Chairlift) and one dude from MGMT, and happens to be the brother of Madeline from Cults, so naturally, hype abounded for this set. The band's sixties-twinged lo-fi hooks are definitely too cool to fail. Check out some music, it's free! Highly recommend track 4, "Don't Wake The Dead":
CMJ is full of fun, free parties, but try and find the time this weekend to stop by The Launch Pad at Spike Hill
. Your ears will not regret it.