The Most Blogged About Show This Week

Class Actress

I think the Mayans were trying to bait us all into thinking the world was going to end a few weeks ago so we’d all panic and kill each other in some sort of vile, nuclear bloodbath, so that they may rise from their subterranean enclave and reinhabit the seemingly perfect world we’re enjoying in 2013. It’s a glorious world, with an active David Bowie, naked waitresses serving up artisanal pies at Roberta’s and a new Silent Barn and Market Hotel (soon enough?)

It’s a world where Class Actress and Au Revoir Simone’s Erika Spring roam free, or at least play for free with DJ sets from Neon Indian, Chairlift and Lemonade at 285 Kent on Thursday nights.

It’s a magical world where a Montreal-based producer who works with Grimes called Majical Cloudz emerges from obscurity to play alongside of darkwave acts with chilling visuals like The Soft Moon down at Mercury Lounge on 58 degree January nights like tonight.

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The Most Blogged About Shows This Week

Sufjan Stevens

This column is somewhat awkward to write today because I’m not quite sure how much “week” there is in “The Most Blogged About Shows This Week,” what with the apocalypse tentatively scheduled for sometime on Friday night.  I’ve made the editorial decision to shun the Mayan overlords and side with the venues, bands and promoters who have elected to book shows after the mystically-prescribed “end of the world” and talk about shows that have been booked for Saturday and Sunday night in addition to those being held before the world ends in the sort of fury I’d imagine was only previously reserved for Michael Bay masturbation sessions.

The MOST BLOGGED ABOUT SHOW this week somewhat arrogantly scoffs at the Mayans, choosing to celebrate a Christmas that may never come with an angelic sing-a-long lead by none other than Sufjan Stevens on Friday Night at Bowery Ballroom.  The prolific singer-songwriter recently dropped a crazy Christmas box set which consists of three hours of Christmas music spread across five discs, temporary tattoos, posters, stickers, an 80+ page booklet, ornaments, a coloring book and probably a copy of Home Alone on VHS; a self-indulgent yet decadent package to find bow-wrapped beneath a Douglas Fir on the morning of Christ’s Birthday Observed.

Apocalypse Night actually has a host of bloggable shows worthy of your final hours on the planet. Guardian Alien headlines the “Official World’s End” party at Shea Stadium with a host of experimental acts to lull you into a hypnotic and unknowing trance as the walls begin to collapse around you.  Fucked Up and Parquet Courts play the Warsaw, worthy accompaniment for a final bender.  Prince Rama and DicPic (Pictureplane and DJ Dog Dick) play 285 Kent, Dum Dum Girls and Crocodiles headline Glasslands and the Brooklyn Night Bazaar continues with JD Samson and MEN.  If the world is ending, Brooklyn will toast to it.

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The Most Blogged About Shows This Week

Most Buzzed Artists of 2012

This is a very special edition of “The Most Blogged About Shows This Week.”  The My Social List team, as you may or may not be aware, tracks nine of the most relevant indie music blogs on the planet in order to determine what the “most blogged about” shows are each and every day and each and every week.  This column isn’t all fun and games!  It’s based on HARD DATA (with some creative liberties, of course.)

Today, we’ve released our list of the most blogged about artists of 2012, which literally ranks the artists each blog talked about the most in the past year.  Who really got the most Pitchfork praise this year?  Who did BrooklynVegan commenters get the most chances to hate on in 2012?

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The Most Blogged About Shows This Week

Vampire Weekend

I had a morbid curiousity about natural disasters as a child.  I remember scanning the card cataloge for books in my elementary school’s library back in New Jersey, reading tales of earthquakes with Richter scale readings akin to slightly-above average Pitchfork ratings, absolutely decimating cities.  I remember going to the local movie theater and seeing Bill Paxon and Helen Hunt fight off a twister with a metal pole and a couple of belts they probably bought at Sears.  I remember watching the Weather Channel for hours on end, tracking the next huge hurricane as it traveled up the Gulf of Mexico.

I lived in fear of natural disasters, but there was always a certain degree of detachment from them.  I knew that there was no significant fault line around.  I knew that tornados only happened in places like Kansas, and that by the time a hurricane made it up the east coast to northern New Jersey, it’d be nothing more than some bullshit tropical storm

Well, that all changed a couple of weeks ago.  I never thought I’d encounter a storm like Sandy while living here in Kings County, but it happened.  Here’s to hoping that we never have to endure a storm of Sandy’s magnitude ever again.  My heart goes out to those who are struggling in areas like the Rockaways, Breezy Point, Staten Island and New Jersey.

It’s times like these where New Yorkers come together.  I’d like to take this opportunity to again commend my friends over at Occupy Sandy for their amazing relief effort.  Friends, remember that grassroots organizations like this one are far more effective than larger boutique non-profits with miles of red-tape and organizational expenses to cover when you’re making contributions to relief funds.  Indie big-wigs have taken notice; namely Real Estate, Vampire Weekend, Devendra Banhart, The Walkmen, Cass McCombs and Dirty Projectors.  They’re playing an Occupy Sandy benefit this Saturday at St. Ann and the Holy Trinity in Brooklyn Heights, and this one is also our MOST BLOGGED ABOUT SHOW this week.

Occupy seems to do their best work in the autumn months.  One of their affiliates, Strike Debt, are hosting a benefit in conjunction with Occupy Faith at (le) Poisson Rouge to increase awareness in their plight to absolve the national debt tonight.  This A-list variety show is headlined by Jeff Mangum and will feature performances from Lee Ranaldo, Guy Piccotto, Janeane Garafalo, Tunde Abimpe (of TV on the Radio) and much more.  Tickets are sold out, but if you missed out, we’re live-streaming the event over on the My Social List blog.

I also want to point out that Dan Deacon will be donating the proceeds of his two shows this week to Occupy Sandy and Red Cross relief efforts; as if you needed ANOTHER reason to see the most innovative live act in all of music today.  He played last night at Music Hall of Williamsburg, and if you missed that, he’s at Bowery Ballroom on Friday.  Infamous for his participatory live shows, Deacon has taken it a step further, encouraging downloads of his new smartphone app which produces lights and sounds that are synchronized with his music.

Lydia Lunch is bringing her Retro/Virus party to Knitting Factory back on this side of the bridge tonight.  I’m not sure what exactly to expect out of this one, but she’s “invited her friends,” and that’s already enough for the no-wave obsessive in me.  Jim Jarmusch and Suicide both have shows coming up at (le) Poisson Rouge this month, and Thurston Moore and Lee Ranaldo have remained fairly active here in New York in the (maybe) post-Sonic Youth era, so those are a few possibilities, but I wouldn’t rule anyone out from the late 70s/early 80s glory days of the Lower East Side.

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Freewilliamsburg & My Social List present Halloween

Freewilliamsburg & My Social List present Halloween

It’s widely accepted that one of the absolute best nights out of the year is Halloween.  The calendar provides not one other date in which it is not only socially acceptable, but your responsibility as a red-blooded, flag-waving AMERICAN to parade around intoxicated in a ridiculous outfit; unless you live in Bushwick, that is.  I do… but I’m pumped anyway.  At least, I am now, because up until today, the lineup for Halloween shows was pretty disappointing.


That’s why we enlisted our good friend Kristina Tequila to work on putting together the absolute BEST Halloween experience of 2012 for us (us being My Social List and this here blog, FREEwilliamsburg), a show in the industrial-DIY wasteland that is 285 Kent, co-headlined by two of the absolute best post-punk and darkwave bands in the borough, Weekend and Black Marble.

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The Most Blogged About Shows This Week

Kanye West

It’s refreshing (and relaxing) to talk about something other than CMJ for a change.  Not that I didn’t thoroughly enjoy myself during the all-out clusterfuck of a festival that is the “Music Marathon,” but the weight of tracking hundreds of shows, attending them, and consuming all the free booze that’s flowing over a few days borders on burdensome at some points.  I know.  Serious, SERIOUS #hipsterproblems.

I digress.  The beauty of New York City is that we’re not waiting all year to see bands.  We’re not Manchester, Tennessee or Indio, California.  Shit, we’re not even Austin, Texas (no offense.)  We ALWAYS have stuff going on.  And that’s why I’m here, no?

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Reminder: Our CMJ Showcase Is Tonight

HEADS UP: The FREEwilliamsburg/My Social List un-official CMJ showcase is tonight at 7 PM, with some minor changes.

Unfortunately, Gary War canceled all of their CMJ shows, but never fear, Kristina Tequila was able to grab a worthy replacement; Led Er Est’s Shawn Devin O’Sullivan.  He’ll bring the dark industrial sounds of his side project Vapauteen to XPO 929’s dreary floor-level stage in their place.

I’m not one for the rain, but it’s as if the weather gods made good on a favor they owed the music gods for tonight.  They’ve cast a dark cloud over the city, a stark contrast from the clear and sunny skies we’ve enjoyed for CMJ thus far.

Vapauteen will be supported by a pair of somber and tenebrous post-punk acts, the more cold-wave leaning Black Marble, and your new neighbors, the more garage-leaning Weekend, who I recently sat down for an interview with.

Black Marble JUST released their debut album, A Different Arrangement, which is streaming on Brooklyn Vegan.  Don’t miss this special opportunity to hear it live in an intimate setting. I’m a few listens through and can already say that this is one of my favorite records of the year.

Weekend are hard at work on the follow up to 2010’s excellent LP Sports, and this show finds them smack in the middle of their first tour of Brooklyn as residents. Better hop on this one; they’re already playing bigger stages… like Bowery Ballroom tomorrow.

They’ll be supported by electronic acts Plastic Flowers, Dark Sister, and Yvette, one of our favorite local noise bands.

ANDDDDDDDDDD THERE WILL BE CHEAP DRINKS, namely $1 Rolling Rocks all night, and $4 Rolling Rock/shot combos.

Doors are at 7 PM and tickets (which are just six bucks) are on sale now.  Of course, badgeholders will be granted free access, with limited capacity.

The Most Blogged About Shows: CMJ 2012 Edition

CMJ 2012

The My Social List team has covered CMJ extensively over the past two weeks.  We’ve listed over two-hundred shows. We’ve interviewed bands. We’ve provided handy guides to each day of the festival, and alerted you to all the best free shows. There’s so much going on, that it’s almost tough to keep track of US, let alone the festival itself.

That’s why I’m posting an official guide to CMJ here on FREEwilliamsburg.  Five can’t miss shows for every day of the “music marathon,” in no particular order.  There’s still a couple of shows that haven’t been announced (the Brooklyn Vegan day parties come to mind;) but rest assured, they’ll be added to our comprehensive CMJ list as soon as they’re announced.  For the budget minded, check out this list of free shows.


My Social List Official CMJ Showcase: Thieves Like Us, Teen Daze, Delicate Steve, Dent May, Heavenly Beat, Mac DeMarco, Bleeding Rainbow, The Young Evils, Grand Resort, Lingerie DJ set (Marlin Room at Webster Hall, 6:00 PM) $12

Why you should go: Because despite my obvious bias, this is probably the best collection of buzzed artists for the entire week.  Don’t believe me? Keep reading, and you’ll see. Oh, and we’re giving away a pair of tickets to this one. [Read more…]