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I know, “Here we go again,” right? Another shmuck telling you what to do with your time and giving you a list of who you can’t miss. But lets face it, with the influx of tight jeans, guitar cases, and foreign cigarettes (aka a few hundred bands in NYC) a good recommendation can go a long way. Chances are, you’ve got your week planned out, but for those of you who could use a band for that one hour block you have free, I gotchu. These four bands are playing a slew of shows this week, so you’ll have plenty of opportunities to catch them.
After a morning filled with intriguing CMJ Tech Talks, I wandered into Pianos to see a few bands I’ve had my ears on. As I pulled out my camera, and faced the decision of Upstairs or Down…I heard this groove knocking above me and a silky voice crooning. Dressed like a business casual angel with mic in hand, was Catey Shaw. She confessed that this was her third CMJ, but even though she wasn’t in college nor on college radio, she plays “because it’s damn fun, and you get to drink in the day time.”
10/14 @ The Hall | 10/15 @ Rockwood Stage 1
Hands down the best band you’ll see at CMJ. I’ll say it definitively, without any hesitation. There’s got to be something in the water Down Under because the Aussies know how to crank out a tune or three. A quick listen to any song on the fresh EP TQ will reveal a sound layered in samples, heavy basslines, guitar riffs, and lead singer, Miller Upchurch’s powerful voice. I was worried about how their sound would translate live, as most times these studio creations leave much to be desired on stage. But these guys brought their balls with them from Down Under. The room was alive and dancing, not something you see often at CMJ. Be sure to catch these guys at one of their many shows this week.
10/14 @ Cake Shop 10pm. | 10/15 @ Baby’s All Right 2:15AM | 10/16 @ Rockwood Music Hall 4PM , The Flat 6PM | 10/17 @ The Delancey 5:20PM
This guy has been a sort of enigma to us here in the states. I personally hadn’t been able to catch any of his previous shows and had to resort to Youtube videos. I must say, every one of these videos is intriguing, but none of them compare to seeing him live. He is a multi-instrumentalist, and by multi I mean he can play dozens of instruments. And if he doesn’t have an instrument, he’ll use the space around him. Anything. Slabs of concrete, bees, and cow carcasses…you know, just to name a few. Pictures and words don’t do him justice. He’s got two more shows, one at Piano’s tonight and another at 1:45 AM @ The Living Room.
10/14 @ Pianos | 10/16 @ The Living Room 1:45 AM
Last but not least, we’ve got another Aussie group. I like these guys for different reasons than the rest. Their studio album is great, love the groove, but their live show…their live show is something else. I don’t mean they blow your mind with a sound you’ve never heard before. But they’re possibly the nicest and most charming band I’ve seen. Every time they finished a song the guys would bust out in laughter, one that was infectious and immediately set the tone of the cozy Cake Shop basement. They were genuinely happy to be playing in The States and constantly joked with the crowd that continued to grow as their set progressed. They’ll be playing a few gigs as well as the Aussie BBQ at the Delancey this Saturday. Definitely a day not to be missed.
10/14 @ Elvis Guesthouse 2PM | 10/15 @ Paperbox 8:30PM | 10/16 @ Black Bear Bar 6PM & Our Wicked Lady 7:30 | 10/17 @ The Delancey