(Pictured: Singing DJ Jens Lekman at the Music Hall of Williamsburg. For more better photos, check out Brooklyn Vegan's post)
The last two days of CMJ were jam packed with temptatious showcases, mixers, and panels. Thursday, I went down to the South Side Seaport, and after getting terribly lost, I was only able to catch Bearsuit. The band was a fat waste of time musically. However, the band did tell a zinger related to technical difficulties:
"We're having problems with American Power."
"A lot of people are."
As cute as they were, I wished I had caught the last moments of Brooklyn's Loose Limbs, who sound a bit like Thee Oh Sees. In the evening, the folks at Matador threw a little party at Stanton Public, with DJ sets by Times New Viking and The Teenagers. Admittedly, it was after some failed attempts to go to other shows. (Piano's was sold out very early, so we didn't catch the Dutchess and the Duke and the line for the Vivian Girls was long and static.)
Saturday, AAM threw their showcase which had a great line-up: Crystal Antlers, Ruby Suns, Monotonix, Annuals, and A Place to Bury Strangers. I caught up with Crystal Antlers here, and they gave me a little interview about their tour, CMJ, and some future plans (transcript posted soon). I have their EP, but hadn't yet seen them live and let me tell you, recordings sell them short. Ruby Suns played percussion heavy, island music with light electronics and I was in disbelief that two young New Zealanders were making all that music.
Man, I thought Crystal Antlers had great energy, but Monotonix was the most shocking, exciting, and unpredictable show I saw at CMJ. The lead singer kicked over trashcans like they were soccer balls, threw water unto the crowd in a manner similar to a mass baptism (he does sort of look like Jesus), and hung off the balcony until security gently pulled him off. He moved like a whack-a-mole machine, frantically disappearing and reappearing in different parts of the venue. The other members had wild antics as well, and I was shocked how perfectly the tunes and vocals were, despite being upside down or having your drumset held up steadily by members of the crowd.