Thursday, November 5, 2009

CMJ 2009 - Day 3

Not too much to report on Day 3 due to extreme fatigue but I had to represent/support my favorite LA music blog, Aquarium Drunkard, and their day showcase at Fontana's. I got there in time to catch the last couple songs from Blair, a sweet female-led four-piece from New Orleans who put out an impressive debut last year and now have been added to the Autumn Tone roster (label of Aquarium Drunkard chief Justin Gage). Look for a new release from Blair in January 2010. Also of note at the showcase was the dark trip-hop duo Phantogram from upstate NY...They reminded me of The XX but with more layers and primarily female vocals. Look for more material to come through Barsuk Records.

Upstairs at the Brooklyn Vegan day party at Pianos, I heard a delightful number from Freelance Whales, a very cute 5-piece from Queens, playing happy folk-tronica which could have fit nicely in the "Where the Wild Things Are" Soundtrack. Speaking of Brooklyn Vegan, they get kudos for hipping me to an under the radar electronic music night at the Rose Jazz club in Williamsburg (Brooklyn). I listened to one of the bands on the bill,FOUND, on myspace and it pretty much clinched my commitment to make the trek, especially since they were from Edinburgh, Scotland and i doubt i would have another chance to see them. Unfortunately, i got there just after they had finished their set, but somehow managed to meet the lead singer of the collective who gave me a few promo copies of their cd to listen to. < --- more on these guys later. I ended the night at the Paradigm Showcase at the Mercury Lounge to see LA's Local Natives. Believe it or not, i had yet to see them in my own backyard in LA and after hearing so much praise over their music, i had to witness it in front of an un-local audience. Was most impressed by the bearded lead singer, who was very efficient at multi-tasking his yearning vocals with keyboards and one-handed drum strikes. The rest of the natives sported magnum PI moustaches and delivered pretty percussion-friendly pop. I don't know why but i can see these guys making a nice christmas record that we can all tolerate. Make sure to give them a warm homecoming reception after their long tour comes to an end in December.

I was able to capture snippets of the live performances from all of these bands through my new Ultra HD Flip cam, so make sure and go to FoundTrack's CMJ Youtube page to check out our extensive coverage.

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