Allo Darlin' @ The Woods
For me, day three of CMJ started at The Woods. With so much opportunity to see a good number of the bands featured in CMJ year round (sooo many Brooklyn bands), it's always not a bad idea to make an effort to see out-of-town bands, and The Woods were showcasing at least a couple - Hedgehog (China) and Allo Darlin' (UK).
I arrived in time to see about half of Hedgehog's set. Despite their cute name (and their adorable drummer, Atom), Hedgehog delivered a pretty raucous set. Though the kit may obscure nearly all of the tiny drummer, she propels the music with a fierce intensity. (In my slightly delusional state of sleep deprivation, I admit I had fantasies of Atom teaming up with Marissa Paternoster and starting a tiny girl super group.)
I had been looking forward to checking out Dream Diary, but apparently the set times had become somewhat jumbled, and we got Sleepies instead. Perhaps also frustrated with the change of lineup (or just craving a taco), the room was nearly empty for Sleepies' set, and even one of the members joked that they should just all go across town to see Surfer Blood. Yikes.
My main reason for heading over to The Woods was to check out Allo Darlin.' Since Sleepies' set was only 20 minutes long, we were somehow running ahead of schedule (a first for CMJ?), so Allo Darlin' actually got to do a soundcheck. Ironically, they also suffered the most from technical problems. Their set started out fine enough (so the vocals were too low... what's new?), but things got out of control pretty quickly. Let's just say the sound guy was lucky to be hiding behind a large plant (what?). Allo Darlin' were understanding to a point, but clearly grew frustrated by the problems and the lengthy break during their show. Despite the setbacks, it was still nearly impossible to refrain from smiling (at least when they were actually playing). If the number of photographers present is any indication of a band's promise, then the blogosphere must be expecting big things from Allo Darlin' - as their singer Elizabeth Morris pointed out, nearly everyone in the room had a camera. If you missed them at this or their only other CMJ show, catch them now on their tour that includes the Mondo Halloween Party at The Rock Shop in Brooklyn on October 30 (tickets are on sale).
From there it was a brief respite from music to attend my first CMJ party, an NPR Music-sponsored event. (Oh hi, Laura Gibson. Fancy meeting you here.), and then it was off to Mercury Lounge for The Extra Lens.
More pictures from the Impose/Pop Jew show at The Woods, including bands not mentioned in the review (The Othermen and Bright Lights), and a Bleary Eyed Brooklyn video from the show, below...