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In the coming weeks a flurry of acronyms approacheth the city as CMJ and the CBGB music festival make landfall. Both apparently used to stand for something cool. It’s safe to open your ears now, because we promise our picks have developed a special antibody rendering them resistant to a case of the lames which develops in conjunction with Apple collaborations and/or the advanced stage of Music Industrial Complex infection.

CBGB Music & Film Festival
First up is the third annual CBGB Music & Film Festival which starts this week at venues all over Manhattan and parts of Brooklyn. Honestly, we’re shocked this even takes place in New York City. Somehow, despite the presence of Dave Navarro’s facial hair, this fest hasn’t moved on to where the Osmonds and Britney Spears are preparing their death masks (Las Vegas). Which means that the commodification, repackaging, and selling of ’70s punk culture and “Rock N’ Roll” is apparently still alive and well.

But ok, we’ll stop being jerks because Devo is gonna be there, which means all is forgiven. And there’s a slim chance they won’t play any of their new stuff. After all, they did play the whole of Q: Are We Not Men? A: We Are Devo! at a festival back in 2009. At least three of the original members will perform, but stay tuned because CBGB is being clammy about event details. Time, date, and venue are still TBA.

The Wives

Correction: An earlier version of this article mistook one band for another, our apologies.

The OG band called The Wives, not to be confused for the comparatively new NYC psych band of the same name, have gotten back together after a 20 year hiatus. They’ll be playing this week along with a few completely different bands including the Cash Registers, Battle For Wyoming (butt rock), and The Brought Low (Southern rock) at total dive bar Hank’s Saloon in Boerum Hill on Friday, October 10. Show starts at 8:30 p.m., but get there early because tickets are being sold at the door for $10.

Talib Kweli
Brooklynite Talib Kweli has been around the rap world for a long, long time. So if you haven’t seen him live yet, it’s high time to do so. He’ll be holding it down at Brooklyn Bowl on Saturday, October 11. Tickets are $10, doors open at 6:30 pm.

Here’s some grungy, old-fashioned rock n’ roll straight outta Brooklyn. Ceramics will be shredding at Cameo Gallery on Saturday, October 11 at 8 p.m. Tickets are $8. Joining them are a few more local acts: Haybaby, Crazy Pills, and We Ride On.


This band inspires some serious nostalgia for ’90s radio rock. Upset, the project of post-Best Coast Ali Koehler, Patty Schemel (who was the drummer for Hole in the ’90s), and Jennifer Prince, is a particularly earnest kind of pop rock that would have made for an excellent soundtrack to a Winona Ryder film. Check them out at the Bell House on Friday, October 10 at 8 p.m. Tickets are $15. The Muff will be playing typical Burger Records fair and Miriam Linna will be playing stuff that sounds not unlike the Beatles.


At 10 p.m. on Thursday, October 9 head to Pianos to check out these weirdos from Kentucky. D’arkestra embraces a jazzy brass section that adds a sort of funk-inspired edge to their music and offer a set that’s a complete departure from almost everything else happening at this fest. Definitely worth checking out. And hey, tickets are just $8.

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Wowzers– there are no fewer than approximately 420 million bands showing up for this thing, so we’re going to pare down this one to the best events (both official and unofficial) happening in our hoods and the ones you won’t have to pay $365 to see.

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CMJ Day Party at Baby’s All Right
Brooklyn-based record label Captured Tracks is teaming up with its sister labels Sinderlyn and Couple Skate Records for an all-day party on Thursday, October 23 at Baby’s All Right in Williamsburg. Sorry weekend warriors, this one’s for 24/7 danglers only.

This one is commitment free– as an unofficial party, you won’t have to grip a festival pass to check this one out and admission is also totally free. Folks babes Widowspeak will be headlining. And between 1 and 7 p.m. several more Brooklyn bands as well as some visitors will take the stage–Mega Bog (twee rock + saxophone) hail from Seattle and Brit-punk inspired Girl Tears from LA. We’re really digging Quebec band Homeshake. Check out their track below.

Kanine Records Day Party at Pianos
10612547_825716770822574_1175758252666280989_nAnother day party, another freebie brought to you by Brooklyn record label Kanine Records, this day party happens on Wednesday, October 22 at Pianos on the Lower East Side.  I mean, if you’re already skipping work on Thursday you might as well make it a week-long vacation. Seven bands will play downstairs while seven more bands will play simultaneously upstairs. The lineup includes girl punks Girl Pool (LA), Ultimate Painting (Chicago), and Beach Day (Florida).

Sub-Pop and Hardly Art Showcase

If you aren’t brave enough to play hooky, you can always join all the other olds at one of the nighttime showcases. We recommend this one for Obits (who released a sick new album Bed & Bugs last fall on Sub-Pop) and Protomartyr. It’s happening aton Thursday, October 23 at 8 p.m. and will cost you 12 bones.


So metal is more your speed? Well, you’re in luck because it looks like the Acheron is hosting an intriguing CMJ showcase featuring some tinnitus-inducing metal from all over. The lineup includes King Parrot (Australia), So Hideous, Lazer/ Wulf, and Moon Tooth. This one’s being held Tuesday, October 21 at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $10.

As seen on B+B…
You’ve read about ’em in these pages, now see ’em live.
Slothrust – the sloth-loving loud/QUIET/loud Brooklyn band opens for The Kills, Moon Duo, and Nuns at Bowery Ballroom on Oct. 23.

OBN IIIs – the Austin garage rockers will tear up the Panache showcase, on Oct. 24 at Baby’s All Right with Purling Hiss, Hunters, Calvin Love, Meatbodies, DUNE RATS, Happyness, and Homeshake.