CMJ is around the corner and in order to get the full experience, you’re going to need a couple things: the official schedule, the app, and this carefully curated list of 11 acts you shouldn’t miss. Obviously Cold War Kids and the Kills are must-sees, but seeing as they are the festival’s resident veterans, we decided to compile a list of up-and-comers and new favorites to add to your arsenal, or simply revisit. Cheryl, Nicole, Eva, and Justin will be covering a bunch of shows during CMJ, so check back for their favorite finds and feel free to tweet them about any other shows you think they shouldn’t miss. And if you haven’t already picked up your copy of Issue #2, feel free to give them a shout — they’ll be well-equipped with ALT CITIZEN giveaways. Cheers to one hell of a week and all of your new discoveries!
1. Saint Pepsi, October 22 @ Output Club
We were smitten with his soulful R&B remix of TEEN’s “Not For Long,” but Saint Pepsi’s recent funkified edit of Drake’s “Worst Behavior” takes our love to another level (listen below). Ryan DeRobertis, the man behind the electronic magic, is one of our favorite new discoveries, and the blogosphere seems to approve, with features cropping up everywhere from Interview to Billboard.
2. Potty Mouth, October 25 @ Cake Shop
The ladies in Potty Mouth don’t pull any punches — and that’s what won us over in the first place. This outfit comes to us from Massachusetts, and their unfiltered lyrical honesty, poppy hooks, and snarling punk attitude are a refreshing take on genre formulas. This is guaranteed to be a gritty, beer-soaked good time.
3. Protomartyr, October 23 @ Knitting Factory
Riding the high of critical acclaim for their sophomore album Under Color of Official Right (released last April from Hardly Art), Protomartyr has been enjoying quite a successful year. Their amalgamated brand of post-punk — restless, volatile, exploratory — is beguiling ears everywhere, and we couldn’t be more excited to join in on their subtlety polished frenzy.
4. Porches, October 25 @ Death By Audio
Combine the lazy vocal lilt of folk with some subtle organ / synth work and ’90s-minded guitar tones and you’ll skirt the edges of what Porches. brings to the table. He and bandmate Greta Kline have been quite busy between Porches. and Frankie Cosmos (Kline’s brainchild), and, recognizing their diverse, hard work, the Deli honored the two respective projects with their own Record of the Month highlights.
5. Twin Peaks, October 23 @ Glasslands Gallery
Twin Peaks have mastered a winning combination of party-read rock ‘n’ roll, pop melodies, and gravelly punk vocals. In addition to releasing their sophomore album Wild Onion last month, they tore off the roof of Baby’s All Right during their tour with the Lemons — literally. This is the kind of debauchery we dream of.
6. King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard, October 25 @ Pianos
Just in time for their new album I’m in Your Mind Fuzz, King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard will be touting their psychedelic, flute-driven garage rock to what have to be unassuming CMJ audiences. Their recent single, “Hot Water,” caught us pleasantly off-guard, so we can’t wait to see what this Australian wild card has to offer live.
7. Joey Bada$$, waiting on details
Rapper and Brooklyn native Joey Bada$$ has released stellar mixtapes over the last few years, including 1999 and Summer Knights, but it’s his debut album B4.Da.$$ that we are most excited for. Recent singles “Get Paid” and “Big Dusty” have kept our interest piqued, and with the release of the full album slated for this fall, you can bet he’s going to bust out some more new tracks during his performance. Get in on the ground floor — JB’s got big things on the horizon.
8. White Fence, October 25 @ Rough Trade
Singer songwriter Tim Presley, aka White Fence, is prolific, to say the least. He dropped For the Recently Found Innocent this past summer, marking his sixth studio album release since 2010 (in addition to extended collaborations with Ty Seagall). His sound mixes the carefree attitude of ’60s psych-pop with the raw sensibilities of garage rock — meaning, get ready to dance, sway, and freak out.
9. The Wytches, October 25 @ Pianos
This gruff psych trio released their frenetic debut album Annabel Dream Reader this summer, and it’s just begging for people to come out and thrash about. Let it all out — we know we will.
10. Slowdive, October 25 @ Terminal 5
The recently reunited shoegaze icon Slowdive has been stirring up a buzz this year, and how could they not? After a 20 year hiatus, the British band came together again last January and went on to play Primavera Sound in Barcelona that following May, where they performed for an estimated 25,000 people. Clearly, demand is still high — which is good because a new album is reportedly on the horizon. While the release date is yet to be announced, one thing is certain: you definitely don’t want to miss this genre giant, especially in such an intimate setting. And be sure to catch a panel Q&A with members Nick Chaplin and Simon Scott following the screening of Eric Green’s shoegaze documentary Beautiful Noise.
11. Little Racer, October 24 @ Lit Lounge
Since we’ve already partied with Little Racer, we can say with the utmost authority that you need to check these dudes out. Their charming, dance-inducing surf rock is the perfect way to relive those summer memories — or create some crazy new ones.