Thursday night of CMJ ended up being good for sweat and beer at Knitting Factory, but it didn’t start out that way. The first musician I caught there was Daughn Gibson. who paired some dark country croonin’ with electronic beats. He was joined by a librarian-esque keyboard player, who added an extra layer of dusty parlor room creepiness to the freak country tunes. Daughn’s deep bass voice resonated over the melodic lines, and he even sang along with some of his samples, like that one about going to get grandma. It was like a mashup between Elvis, Johnny Cash, a MPC, and ‘shrooms.
Poor Moon was next, but my attention started to wane as they took what felt like forever to set up their million-piece set. When they finally started playing it was like an elevator lullaby threatening to put me to sleep, so I decided to step out and see if anything good was going on a few blocks away at Grand Victory. After I found out that I had already missed Japanese post-punks ZZZs, I headed back to The Knit just in time for METZ to take the stage. This is when fists and hair started flying. This hardcore grunge trio from Toronto kicked up the energy level big time, bringing some hardcore punk energy back to what had so far been a subdued night of live music, and it’s always nice to get that slap in the face every once in a while as a reminder to wake up and rock out.
It just got punkier from then on out, when King Tuff took the stage and a wild mosh pit broke loose. The band ripped out some rockin’ riffs, and the crowd was kockin’ bows. In other words, push literally came to shove, and not getting completely slammed against the stage became top priority. Bodies and beers getting thrashed everywhere, and I’ve got the bruises and beer-soaked clothes to show for it. Yeah, it was a good show.