So CMJ kicked my ass. Actually I think CMJ kicked everyone's ass this year. The general consensus of people standing around outside of Pianos on Saturday night before Benzos was "I'm tired. I'm unbelieveably tired." But in my first year of volunteering and having a spiff badge (hanging from an incredibly dorky lanyard), I had a pretty fantastic experience. Here's a list of bands I saw: Moving Units, Pitty Sing, Elkland, Turing Point, Detachment Kit, the Court and Spark, The Wrens, the Bravery, Dogs Die In Hot Cars, The Music, New Amsterdams, the Information, the Good North, Ted Leo/Pharmacists, Prosaics (twice!), Controller.Controller, Communique, Surefire, Sondre Lerche, Faunts, Octet, Asobi Seksu, Benzos, The Gostation, Aerovox... okay I THINK that's it. Phew.
Obviously if I try to talk about all of these bands my head will probably explode. I think I did a pretty good job trying to balance supporting my NYC friends and checking out new acts. On the new side of things... The Wrens are perhaps my favorite new band. Ashley and Nicola told me that I could not miss them, so despite how tired I was I took a cab to Knitting Factory towards the end of the night Wednesday to meet up with Ashley and check them out. The band was fantastic, beyond anything I could have expected. They have a very Ted Leo/Ben Folds Five thing going on, but they just looked like they were having the BEST time (even when they kind of broke the stage... long story, but I think Ashley has pics). Their fans are also the kind of people who REALLY get into shows. I think I was one of the few people in the crowd who didn't know ALL of the lyrics to ALL of their songs. I was especially impressed with their encore of a song called "She Sends Kisses." Anyone have audio of this? It made people cry. I love intense live music experiences like that and I can't wait to see The Wrens play again.
Other new music highlights included Controller.Controller @ Pianos on Saturday afternoon... very Moving Units/Rapture-esque with a fun to watch girl lead singer who does entertaining dances. Kind of repetitive but in a way that we didn't really mind at all. And also The Music were great, I've had "Welcome to the North" on repeat all day long. Otherwise all the NYC favorites were fantastic, I'd say. I hadn't seen Surefire play in a couple months and was pretty blown away by how much they have continued to improve. I also found myself tearing up a little when Benzos played "It's Amiable." Matt, what have you done to me? Haha.
All in all, it was an insane few days, and my feet hurt a lot, and I was kind of glad it was over when it was over. And I'm really happy for the time I got to spend with people I care about, doing what we love the most.
But now I'm tired of talking about music, except to say that Vicious! tomorrow night is Jasper's birthday party, so come and buy him a shot. Jasper really helped me out a lot this year considering he barely knew me when it started and he's pretty damn cool. But seriously, time for a music vacation. I tried to make carrot muffins tonight and almost blew up my kitchen. Oops. Maybe I should work on that domestic thing.
(wrens picture courtesy of this site)