A (Sort Of) Guide To The CMJ Music Marathon

1000 Knives.com/Metalsucks.net/MetalInjection.com Showcase

A Life Once Lost/Car Bomb/This Or The Apocalypse/Baptized In Blood/Last Chance To Reason

Oct. 20

Club Europa, Brooklyn

If you’ve ever seen A Life Once Lost live, it’s likely that, in the throes of a groove-induced rampage, you are guilty of acts of violence against other human beings that would have landed you in jail, if it weren’t really dark in the room—and, if everyone else wasn’t doing the same thing.

The brutality doesn’t end there, however. ALOL are joined in this showcase by Strong Island schizo-core outfit, Car Bomb among many more of the underground’s rising purveyors of violence on Oct. 20 at Club Europa in Brooklyn. There will be blood.—Andrew Magnotta


Black Label Society/Clutch/Children Of Bodom/2Cents

Oct. 20

Hammerstein Ballroom, Manhattan

Yeah, I know this isn’t really a CMJ showcase at all, there’s no label trying to woo industry insiders out to the show with promises of free beer or merch (no more than usual, anyway), and in all likelihood there isn’t a single outlet that’s going to get behind one of these four bands as its “next big thing in indie,” but screw it, the CMJ website had these bands listed as showcasing artists and that’s good enough for me. Any excuse to write about Clutch.

If you’re in town for CMJ and you find yourself dragging after a long day of panels, maybe you pop over to Hammerstein on Oct. 20 for a pretense-free night of heavy guitars and even heavier boozing. Could definitely think of worse ways to spend Wednesday night. —JJ Koczan

The Carl Palmer Band

Oct. 19

B.B. King’s Blues Club, Manhattan

This concert is for true music lovers. Carl Palmer and his band will be performing and all instrumental show for almost two hours. The popular drummer, formerly of Emerson, Lake and Palmer, now in the band Asia, will deliver an extraordinary percussion performance in this Oct. 19 concert. The show is titled “Carl Palmer Celebrates the Music of ELP,” featuring songs from his previous band.

Palmer has stated that after most shows on his tour he will stay to sign autographs and reconnect with fans. Although this isn’t an official CMJ show, it’s definitely worth a look, especially for ELP fans or someone looking for more classic rock music. The show begins at 8 p.m.—George Steffani



Oct. 23

Gramercy Theatre, Manhattan

To make your choice of activity on Saturday Oct. 23 that much more difficult, legendary alternative rockers, the recently reformed Helmet, are playing a show with genre benders Intronaut, inventors of an exciting new genre that I have dubbed technical sludge metal, or tech-sludge (yeah, I’m taking credit all the way).

Helmet mainman Page Hamilton plans to release another album titled Seeing Eye Dog before the year’s end. While Intronaut’s rising star appears poised to reach supernova status with the release of their latest brilliant effort, Valley Of Smoke, available now. —Andrew Magnotta

The Hush Now/Shilpa Ray And Her Happy Hookers/S. Carey (of Bon Iver) & Diamond Rings

Oct. 22

The Knitting Factory, Brooklyn

The Distiller Promotions Showcase on Oct. 22 will feature some great acts, including The Hush Now who are promoting their newly released EP, Shiver Me Starships (how could you resist an EP name like that?). In addition to The Hush Now’s pop-rock, Diamond Rings will also perform, supporting their soon-to-be debut album, Special Affections.

Shilpa Ray And Her Happy Hookers, who perform a mix of blues, jazz and pop, will also perform songs from their new release, A Fish Hook An Open Eye. This CMJ showcase is sure to satisfy all pop tastes. Doors open at 1 p.m. for the 2 p.m. show. —George Steffani

Jenny And Johnny

Oct. 19

Irving Plaza, Manhattan

If you want the true CMJ experience, maybe on a grander scale than you’d get at a smaller place like the Mercury Lounge, you’re going to want to head to Irving Plaza on Oct. 19 for Jenny And Johnny, the appropriately-named duo of Jenny Lewis (Rilo Kiley) and singer-songwriter Jonathan Rice, whose collaborative album, I’m Having Fun Now, was released earlier this year.

The place is going to be loaded with industry-types, college hep cats from out of town and badges as far as the eye can see. So although it’s not a tiny showcase or anything, it’s still going to be a great way to get the feel for CMJ for anyone who’s never been—plus, if you didn’t know, Jenny Lewis played Haley in the 1989 Fred Savage classic, The Wizard, which is one of the greatest films ever made about Super Mario Bros. 3. If you see her, remind her of it. I’m sure she’ll thank you. —Joe Octopus

Me First And The Gimme Gimmes/None More Black/Teenage Bottlerocket/Smoke Or Fire/Dead To Me/The Flatliners

Oct. 23

Music Hall Of Williamsburg, Brooklyn

If you want yet another option for Oct. 23, you’ve found your show. This one is full of great punk bands to entertain on this Saturday night. With new releases from Teenage Bottlerocket and The Flatliners titled They Came From The Shadows and Cavalcade respectively, and an upcoming release from None More Black, this show will be an exciting mix of new music for all punk lovers.

Smoke Or Fire, just got back from a tour with new members, will also appear for this CMJ event to support their upcoming release, The Speakeasy, which is scheduled for release in early November. Doors for the event open at 6 p.m. and the show begins at 6:30 p.m. To attend you must be at least 21.—George Steffani

Quest For Fire

Tee Pee Records Showcase

Naam/Priestess/Quest For Fire/The Atomic Bitchwax/Mirror Queen/Hopewell/Weird Owl/The Main Street Gospel

Oct. 22

Union Pool, Brooklyn

Tee Pee Records trots out some of its East Coast finest and touring acts for its show Oct. 22 at Union Pool in Brooklyn. If you haven’t yet heard it, Quest For Fire’s second album, Lights From Paradise, is a psychedelic highlight of 2010, and the pop chicanery NJ’s The Atomic Bitchwax are getting up to these days can’t be beat. Tie that with the heavy reverb of Naam and the ‘60s acid folk of The Main Street Gospel—not to mention everyone else—and you’ve got yourself a show.

One of the troubles with CMJ over the years has been wanting to see one band on one showcase and another band on another. With Tee Pee’s show, you can stay the whole night and know you’re at the best gig around. —JJ Koczan

1000 Knives.com/Metalsucks.net Showcase

Powerglove/Wetnurse/The Binary Code/Pack Of Wolves/Meek Is Murder/Batillus

Oct. 23

Fontana’s, Manhattan

Remember Saturday morning cartoons and Super Nintendo? So do Boston joke metallers Powerglove. So much so, that they have dedicated two full-length albums to creating “metal” versions of the 8-bit tunes and cartoon themes of their childhood.

Think that’s lame? Well, you aren’t alone.

Which is why the balls of this show are brought to you by New Jersey’s own highly-lauded progressive metal band The Binary Code, grindcore upstarts Meek Is Murder and Pack Of Wolves and heavier-than-thou doomers Batillus. Come for the heavy, stay for the silly. —Andrew Magnotta

Senses Fail/Bayside/Title Fight/Balance And Composure

Oct. 21

Highline Ballroom, Manhattan

The Aquarian has a long-standing relationship with NJ’s Senses Fail, but you know, they haven’t called in a while, so we were thinking maybe we’d go down to the Highline Ballroom on Oct. 21 and start wrecking shit like a crazy ex-girlfriend. Maybe throw some chairs, break some flatware. Maybe take our pants off and run around screaming, “What, you don’t want me anymore? Is that it?”

In short, the usual.

Doubtless, cooler heads will prevail, but you never quite tell when we’ll go off our meds and the whole thing will be shot to hell. Good thing Bayside, Title Fight and (much-needed) Balance And Composure are on the bill. We can only imagine they’ll make sure there aren’t any hurt feelings on either side. —Robert C. Williams, III