One of the industry darlings at the CMJ music festival in New York was The Drums. I have to concur with all the positive buzz! Lead singer Jonathan Pierce has a fantastic stage presence which cannot be described in words and pictures. You’ll get the idea from a video of “Best Friend” live from Webster Hall on October 20, 2010, methinks.
I was really happy to run into Francis Farewell Starlite the other day. I’ve met him once before, but the first time I met him, I was largely unfamiliar with the music of his band Francis and the Lights. Since that day, I’ve really gotten into his music and I got a chance to tell him how awesome I think it is. I also got the chance to tell him how much I appreciate the fact that his live shows are ALWAYS different and it stands out even more in this day and age because hardly anyone is taking the time to change it up. I mentioned specifically the song “Strawberries,” that I’ve seen performed with a full band (and included guitar solos) and then just a few short weeks later, he performed an entirely different version on keyboards. He was super cool and it was a real pleasure chatting with him. He’s gotten some great exposure recently with being one of the most mentioned “buzz bands” at the CMJ music festival in New York and he’s also expanded his fan base by landing opening slots for MGMT and Mark Ronson. I expect you’ll be hearing a lot more from Francis and the Lights in the coming months – so keep your eyes and ears out for the funk!
Prior to The Drums triumphant homecoming show at Webster Hall in New York on October 20, 2010, I met the band! They were all so cool as you can see from these photos that their friends took. I talked to lead singer Jonathan Pierce for a bit and we chatted about our favorite places in New York. He told me the name of his favorite Mexican restaurant, but sorry ladies and stalkers, I forgot the name of it! It’s unfortunate that I didn’t get to see the guys after the show to tell them how awesome they were live, but I am saying it now! Thanks again lads and I am looking forward to hearing lots of great stuff to come!
It’s always a pleasure to see The Rassle live! Playing a headlining show at the Bowery Electric for the CMJ music marathon on October 20, 2010, The Rassle took the stage just after midnight. This is my second time seeing them live and I think they are getting better and better with each performance. Their music is insanely catchy (think MGMT with a bit more rock and roll) and their songs are ready to be sung in stadiums. The Rassle has recently been featured in a J. Crew advertisement and positive reviews are spreading like wildfire across the internet. I was so pleased to spot many record executives in the packed house and I am sure whatever offers come their way, the Rassle will continue to dazzle for years to come! I spoke with the guys after their set, to once again profess my love for their music and they were all very cool. It turns out they all read my “Encounter with The Rassle” article where I told them all about how much I adore their song “Born Free.” It was a huge honor to know they saw it and it was cool to let them know I meant every word! On October 23, 2010, you have another chance to see The Rassle live at Bowery Electric and I suggest you check them out at a small venue while you still can. These guys are going to be huge! Stay tuned for a live video of “Wild Ones,” which was recently featured in ad campaigns for J. Crew.
an artsy photo of Blair Van Nort (lead singer of The Rassle)
It’s CMJ in New York and that means only one thing – buzz bands for days! One of them, Surfer Blood, has possibly generated more buzz during this music festival above all others. Naturally I was very curious to check them out and it happened on October 20, 2010 at Webster Hall. Though they supported The Drums, they received an equal amount of love at the sold out show. Their music is sort of like indie-pop with snatches of Weezer and Foals thrown in for good measure. No complaints, according2g. Lead singer John Paul Pitts rocks even moreso because he doesn’t look like a rock star and instead, he seems like someone you’d have in your math class. Put him on stage and the only thing that multiplies are an audience clapping their hands and smiling. I took a video of their song “Take it Easy,” and it’ll be posted soon, so stay tuned for that. See some more pictures of Surfer Blood, the set list and an unusual encounter with me and lead singer John Paul Pitts after the jump.