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Your Pretextual Guide to (Official & Unofficial) CMJ 2014

Pretext_Social_Club-CMJ_2014_Guide-IMG0While we ain’t even close to familiarizing ourselves with all the music occurring in NYC this week, we know planning your CMJ itinerary can feel a bit overwhelming once realizing it’s not humanly possible to see it all. Here is a (very) loose guide of where to catch some of the bands we got eyeballs on.

Muchmore’s CMJ Showcase
TONIGHT!!! Wednesday,10/22, starting at 7pm (tickets at the door

We’ve been following The Adventures of the Silver Spaceman for a hot minute through all the Spaceman’s various live show transformations, from performing solo to being backed by a full band. Also be on the lookout for TAOTSS’s record release party happening late November.

Getting some buzz with their swagger-filled recent release, “Marry Me,” the Brooklyn-based trio Happy Lives first seduced my ear last fall by mere happenstance when I arrived early at Don Pedro’s last spring to catch Haybaby bid farewell to Zachary J Ellis on drums (who was replaced, coincidentally, by Happy Live’s frontsman, Mike Lande). With impressively catchy power-pop hooks that initially come off as deceptively gooey, missing them this CMJ would be quite a mistake.

After two viewings of Brooklyn’s Water, my fragmented notes read: Classic vintage stoner rock that teeters on 90s grunge to fall into dark 70s heavy rock; and what I presume was in response to their song “Forget Your Life,” an ominous: Please don’t die. If you require further convincing, just click play below.

Hope all you 9-to-5ers took this Thursday (and recovery Friday) off ’cause it’s gonna be a BIG day…

Chris Burden’s Daytime Showcase at Bowery Electric
Thursday, 10/22, 6-8pm (free show)

Bushwick DIY-scenesters Honduras and Haybaby are not to miss, each uniquely defined by their respective frontsmen, Patrick Phillips and Leslie Hong. Gaining traction with their debut music video “Tame Impala” released by Nylon, avoid kicking yourself later and just go see the impressive 90s-tinged, psych-rock trio, Sunflower Bean.

Black Dots Music Group CMJ Showcase + Launch Party at Westway
Thursday, 10/22, starting at 6pm (get tickets)

Do not underestimate Brooklyn duo, XNY; their crazy powerful sound and matching stage presence will knock your pants down. It’s not a question of “if” but only “when” their neurotic, melodic songs will be the soundtrack to your next Urban Outfitters store experience. Also performing is the stellar Midnight Hollow who just released their first single, “Forward,” off their upcoming EP The People Inside.

A Very Gigawatts CMJ at Hot 97.4
Saturday, 10/25, starting at 2pm

With so many Bushwick favorites lined up, this showcase is guaranteed to be epic, but I recommend you get there early. Just sayin’…