In its first 48 hours, the CMJ Music Marathon has taken me from cavernous music venues in Williamsburg to the Kimmel Center in Washington Square, one of NYU’s state of the art facilities where day time panels take place. Hundreds of live performances have happened in Manhattan and Brooklyn as part of the festival/conference and hundreds more are scheduled through Saturday October 20.
While adventuring through this boundless maze of music and culture, I have ran into a couple gems that are likely to be making their way to your ears soon. On Tuesday night I witnessed Toronto’s METZ release a burst of madness at the Cameo Gallery in Brooklyn as part of the Oh My Rockness! official CMJ showcase. The grungy power trio showed a developed sound while letting their ends come brutally loose. Front-man Alex Edkins jolted back and forth, climbed on the drum set and got on his knees to praise musical gods as the sound filled the dark, box shaped room.
On Wednesday night, I cued outside Glasslands Gallery (featured in our Guide to SouthWilliamsburg) and once inside, was able to catch part of the Guards set. The New York based group’s music was sometimes dark and heavy with slow minor riffs and sometimes inviting and singable, at all times projecting from a clear consistent point and giving the band an unmistakable sound. Front-man Richie James Follin’s voice was thoroughly honest in its delivery. The venue’s nebulous stage dÃ©cor, raised areas and various nooks give it an underground vibe that suited the Dum Dum Girls‘ terrific set, who played after Guards.