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Non-NJ bands you need to check out this week at CMJ

Dale Earnhardt Jr Jr

Detroit duo is hands down the band you should look forward to seeing the most at this year's CMJ. The Detroit duo have only officially released a four song EP, with one of the songs being an impressive Beach Boys cover. I guess this chillwave pair are the perfect example of why bands should only release their best material. It's hard to figure exactly what this band sounds like as all three of their original songs conjure completely different feelings. You'll just have to check out the entire EP to see for yourself... or atleast the track below.


Bear Hands

This experimental indie-pop act have been a band since 2006, but are only now hitting their stride. Their What A Drag EP is by far their best release yet and now they're ready to drop their first proper LP, Burning Bush Supper Club, November 2nd via Cantora Records (MGMT). Being on Cantora Records isn't the only thing the Brooklyn quartet have in common with MGMT though. Much like the massively popular Brooklyn duo two of the founding members of Bear Hands met at Wesleyan University. Coincidence? Maybe, maybe not.


Wild Nothing

Wild Nothing is the solo project of VA native Jack Tatum. The indie-rock veteran's music is usually upbeat yet completely calming. His critically acclaimed debut effort Gemini seems to mix classic influences like The Cure with more present day ones like The Pains Of Being Pure At Heart. He also has a similar approach to song-writing as NJ's own Real Estate, except he refreshingly stirs away from the lo-fi aesthetic. To find out exactly what this solo project turned full band sounds like, check out one Gemini's strongest tracks "Summer Holiday" below. 


The Drums

The Drums are yet another Brooklyn band garnering a massive amount of attention from the music world. The most stand out influence in the group's music seems to be The Smith's, but they blend their soft, bright music with 50's vocal harmonies, giving them a more unique sound than the droves of indie bands surfacing in Brooklyn. The Drums have a ton of tour dates coming up, some of which happen to be with Surfer Blood. Chances are if you aren't familiar with this band yet, you will be soon. 

Champagne Champagne

Champagne Champagne is probably the hip-hop act I'm most excited about currently. The Seattle trio, which features an ex Blood Brothers member have a heavily electronic backdrop, with the savvy rhythms of Pearl Dragon in the forefront. Still rather new, the group have yet to drop an official release. Though their debut album may be floating around the internet, wouldn't it be best to just check them out at CMJ this Tuesday?



If I had to be completely honest, the first thing I think when I hear Dom is: girl fronted Neon Indian. Of course their sound does have it's own uniqueness to it. The "garage pop sürf metal psych punk gingerwave" trio from Worechester, Massachusetts have a more aggressive/gritty electronic vibe than your average chillwave (god, I hate using that term) band. That doesn't mean you shouldn't expect extremely catchy melodies with a laid back lyrical approach (e.g. "it's so sexy living in America"). Overall, I'd say if you want a break from the overly introspective, somber music you've been listening too or just need background jams to an E trip then check out Dom's debut EP Sun Bronzed Greek Gods.


Bad Books

Bad Books is a super group made up of Kevin Devine and members of Manchester Orchestra, which is the main reason the newly formed group/side project made this list. With that said, their debut single You Wouldn't Have To Ask isn't too shabby. It dishes out some of Kevin's old tricks accompanied with shared vocals from MO's Andy Hull. The quick upbeat track is just one off a full record the group is putting out this Tuesday. The band's CMJ show @ Bowery Ballroom this Wednesday will not only be their first CMJ show, but it'll be their first show as a band. If you're around, I highly suggest you check it out.


Take a look at the NJ CMJ bands you should check out this week!

Reader Comments (4)

Looking forward to Bad Books. Hoping the open bands are good.
October 18, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterZach
Dale Earnhardt Jr Jr wins just by name. Song isn't bad either. Dom is some wanna be Passion Pit shit though.
October 18, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJeremy
Solid list. Dom and Dale are my favs.
October 18, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJenn
Seeing Bad Books! I rule :)
October 18, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKayla

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