Another day, another wide array of shows. The only difference was the best bands were at the beginning of the day and my night was cut a little short.
I started this wonderful Friday off at Pianos for the Planetary Group party. The line up was pretty good and I had just gotten there in time to see Passion Pit. They were a band that I had been dying to check out, but due to multiple scheduling conflicts never happened; thankfully my luck was about to change. It was definitely one of the best shows of the day. Their 80s synth-pop was absolutely intoxicating, with the sultry Jeff Buckley-like voice of the lead singer enveloping the blend of chiming synthesizer and other percussion instruments. It was most definitely an awesome way to start off the day.
Following their solid performance I got to check out a couple of songs from the Brooklyn based band the Forms, they were pretty good, but truthfully nothing groundbreaking. After them came the slick NYC cool tunes of Wild Light. They were an extremely talented band that had the members switching instruments during the set as well as trading off lead vocal duties. Their songs had big hooks and a pinch of nu wave soaring guitars creating a really intriguing yet accessible brand of indie rock.
After that I headed over to the Fader Fort to partake in some drinks and to check out the Crystal Antlers. This ended up being one of the crowning performances of the whole event. The Crystal Antlers were rock gods shredding effortlessly through arena sized classic rock guitar riffs and heady drums beats, while the lead singer tore the place up with his monstrous shrieking vocal delivery. It was a high-octane performance that took no prisoners, a rock n' roll show at its best! After that mammoth performance came the classic-rock sounds of Kuroma. It was a pretty good show, but it was nowhere near as exciting as the Crystal Antlers.
Following the Fader Fort, I made a detour to the West side that I would end up paying for later on in the night. I had promised a friend from college that I would go check out an old favorite of the early college years with him at the Highline Ballroom. The band was Saves The Day and we were possibly the oldest people there. The show was slightly enjoyable, but I truthfully missed some pretty amazing performances to attend this lackluster one. To add to the situation, I developed a pretty excruciating head cold during the show, which is most definitely no good for rocking out all night with.
[Saves The Day and some guy's fro]
I made my way back down to the Lower East side to find out that every single show that I wanted to check out was sold out. I couldn't get into the Cake Shop to check out the Vivian Girls or Pianos for Oxford Collapse; it was an absolute bust for the shows, and all because I went to see Saves the Day. Pretty lame if you ask me, but I was finally able to find a semi-interesting showcase at Arlene's Grocery. I was able to check out the Brooklyn based group Kaiser Cartel who performed some sweat harmonies that kept my interest for a while, but in the end my pounding head cold got the best of me. I decided to call it a night so I could catch some shut eye and get ready to go strong for one day of CMJ.