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Wrapping up CMJ 2010

Taxi rides from east to west side; uptown todowntown, overlapping forty- to one-hour set times in Brooklyn and Manhattan, droves lined up to see the next big thing, open bars and deeply-discounted beers—this was the daily agenda for attendees at the 2010 CMJ Music Marathon.

Things moved expeditiously and, for the most part, the tightly-knit sets stayed on schedule from Tuesday through closing in the wee morning hours on Sunday. Wide-eyed by the first day and nearly trudging from venue to venue mid-way through the week, attendees and artists had their work cut out for them. This year, the CMJ Music Marathon was jam-packed with some of the most buzzed-about artists—most from New York—who had more multiple spots than last year, easing some of the timetable anxieties.

Courtesy of Patrick J. Eves

Bursts of electro and new wave pulsated throughout the five-day event. New York trio, BRAHMS, made the room dance from the moment they helped kick-off CMJ Tuesday night at a Piano’s showcase. Singer Eric Lyle Lodwick darkly thumped through each track like Dave Gahan making BRAHMS a melodious addiction. The name Oberhofer could be heard here and there. Fronted by Brad Oberhofer, the subtle guitars, meshed with keyboard  have a few chiming hints of Vampire Weekend in tracks like “AWY FRM U,” off the band’s debut, o0O0o0O0o, produced by Modest Mouse’s Isaac Brock. Sydney’s Cassette Kids, who now reside in Brooklyn, didn’t fail to make patrons stir in and around their standing-room spots as vocalist Katrina Noorberger, like a willowy Terri Nunn, commanded the stage with her dirty dance-rock beats.

Courtesy of Patrick J. Eves

Out-of-towners brought as much hype to the daily time slots. Boasting five CMJ gigs under their belts, Newport Beach, Calif.’s Young the Giant offered their soul- and synth-fused set with tambourine-slapping Sameer Gadhia evoking some murmurs of Brandon Flowers vocals. A New Zealand Showcase presented an electronic beat down from Bowie-loving, petite powerhouse Zowie and the more Scissor Sisters-ridden Kids of 88 while Robert and David Perlick Molinari  of French Horn Rebellion filled Santos Party House with whimsical, electro beats (French horns included) as one of the last to perform Sunday morning at 1:30 AM.

A mix of dance, rock and DJ sets took place the final two days at the FADER Fort, reminiscent of a rave house, and some surprises filled in the week, including Phoenix, housed in a packed Madison Square Garden with surprise guests Daft Punk. A rumored turned confirmed appearance by Kanye West with new artist CyHi Da Prynce at the Brooklyn Bowl Fool’s Gold Records Anniversary Party heightened the end of the fest by Saturday night. Here’s to CMJ 2011.

Kanye West Live at CMJ via TimeOutNewYork

By Tina Benitez

Tina Benitez is a contributing writer, who covers music, wine and pop culture from her New York home office for publications like NY Press, Royal Flush, amNY, Men’s Fitness, Venus Zine and Wine Spectator.

OURSTAGE MODEL U.N.- BRAZIL

Mateus Starling

Mateus Starling

Bem-vindos to this week’s Brazilian edition of OurStage Model U.N.! The music of Brazil is known to be representative of its people, a diverse range of influences from all over the world. For the country that gave us such great gifts like Carmen Miranda, the Samba and the Bossa Nova, it’s a bit of a downer that more recent developments in Brazilian music aren’t well known in the states. Fortunately, American music bloggers gushing over 60′s psychedelic garage rockers Os Mutantes and new ravers CSS, have helped spark an interest in Brazilian music of old and new. To quench your curiosity,  take a break from making your Carnival costume and give these Brazilian artists on OurStage a shot:

HITCHCOCKS are a psychobilly/surf band from São Paulo. Known for making edgy surf instrumentals, their music would feel right at home in the soundtrack of a 60′s science fiction B-movie.

Autoramas are quite popular in Brazil’s alternative rock scene. After all— not just any band gets to open for the likes of Mudhoney, the Pixies and Guitar Wolf. With new wave influences such as Devo and The B-52′s, the band has the potential to win over many new fans in the states.

Brazilian born guitarist Mateus Starling is bursting at the seams with talent. After graduating from Berklee College of Music in Boston, Mateus paid the bills by writing TV jingles and working as a session musician. Earlier this year, Starling released Kairos, his debut solo album with a live jazz instrumental focus. Listen to the track “Guerreiro” and you’ll understand why critics in Brazil are calling him the “future of the Brazilian guitar.”

Database

Database

Database is one of the biggest names in Brazilian electronic music. The two Producer/DJs that form Database, Lucio Morais and Yuri Chix, were childhood friends that went to film school together and gained popularity throwing down dance parties for their fellow classmates. After releasing two successful compilation CDs, contributing a remix to Fat Boy Slim’s Southern Fried Records, and playing numerous festivals in Brazil, Database is ready for a full forced breakthrough in the US. Most recently the duo worked with Brooklyn electro-pop outfit French Horn Rebellion, co-writing a single for the group’s Friends and Beaches EP. You can catch Database live as they open for French Horn Rebellion’s current US tour.

Another big buzz act from Brazil is the alternative rock group The River Raid. These moody rockers cite their biggest influences as The Stooges, Violent Femmes, Radiohead and Sonic Youth. Check out the sweet Moog sounds on their track “Electric Cool”.

Rio guitarist Alisson Souza‘s “Esses Dias,” is an instrumental track blending blues and Latin jazz. Souza has a unique approach to combining several layers of break beats, flamenco-styled guitar solos and heavy blues guitar breakdowns over a somber organ. It’s definitely one of those great recordings you hear something new on with each repeated listen.

 


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