[In relation to my CMJ coverage, allow me to pre-emptively apologize for two things: 1) my camera is not fabulous with concert photos, 2) I won’t be hosting many mp3s direct. The reason for the latter is that my current connection is rather slow, so it takes me ages to download and upload things. Since most of the mp3s I’d be hosting for the bands I will discuss would come from MySpace anyhow, it saves time, energy and bandwidth if I show you where you can find the mp3s. This won’t become regular T-Sides.com practice – it’s just for this CMJ coverage.]
CMJ Day Two
Show Attended: HomeTapes Showcase @ Trash Bar in Williamsburg
Pattern Is Movement
In a way, Pattern Is Movement was the perfect way to jump start the Home Tapes Showcase. In another way, Pattern Is Movement was an unfortunate choice for an opening band, because a) they were a hard act to follow, and b) they seemed to be the biggest name, as most of the attendees left after they were done playing.
Their live show was energetic and above all, intriguing — if anyone came to the show not familiar with Pattern Is Movement’s music, chances are they went home and changed that.
On their myspace profile, they list MK Ultra, Deerhoof & Blonde Redhead as influences, but they sound like none of those artists (which is perfectly okay). Honestly, their music on their myspace page sounds a lot like a someone practicing odd scales/chords repeatedly while someone else plays a song on top of that. But their live show didn’t give off that impression at all. I would try to enhance my atrocious description by comparing them to someone, but nothing even remotely close comes to mind — which, to me, is a good thing.
I have to admit, though, my favorite part of their performance was their cover of John Vanderslice’s “You Were My Fiji.” I have a video of it, and I’ll try to host it when I get a quicker internet connection.
Slaraffenland is a five-piece group hailing from Denmark, but from the quality of their performance, they seemed to feel right at home in New York City.
Their show was, in a word, intense. The music would shift from gorgeous and slow moving to spastic with hints of free-jazz style improvisation and sound. However, they managed to do this without it sounding chaotic or out of place. The band members were constantly moving (and I don’t mean just to play their instruments, I mean they were jumping and dancing) and most of them contributed screamed vocals throughout most of the set. After just a few songs, it was obvious that this is a band that loves playing the music they make as much as they love making it.
One of the qualities that made them especially appealing is the fact that almost every single member (except for the drummer, who was on drum duty full-time) is a multi-instrumentalist. One of the guitarists also played harmonica, one of the guitarists also sang, played trumpet and worked the drum machine, the bassist had keyboard duty as well as flute skills, the saxophonist could also play the oboe… so this is what talent coupled with ambition looks like!
The Caribbean: I imagine that the music they make is exactly what people think of when they think of a stereotypical indie rock sound. It’s the kind of stuff I would’ve loved when I first got into indie rock, but now realize how generic and boring it is. Their performance matched the music. It was… well, generic and boring.
Everyone else: The show line-up went out of the original order, so I had no idea who was who, and out of my confusion started paying less attention and started wandering around more. Eventually I ran into some friends and saw little to nothing of the last two artists (whoever they were).