On Wednesday, the second night of New York's annual CMJ Music Marathon, music fans gathered at Williamsburg's Cameo Gallery for the Mexican Summer, Kanine, and Carpark Records showcase. The bands played underneath the venue's tentacled art installation, which, when lit up, looked like the shimmering tails of fireworks that had already exploded.
Bleeding Rainbow, the Philadelphia-based noise-pop project of Rob Garcia, Sarah Everton, and Al Creedon, played an energetic set containing a lot of new material from their upcoming record out on Kanine in February. The songs featured squealing, distorted guitars without sacrificing melody or recognizable hooks. The set peaked with "Waking Dream," with its impressive vocal harmonies and pleasantly fuzzy guitars. The crowd, which was small at the beginning of the night, grew steadily larger and more enthusiastic during Bleeding Rainbow's set.
Next up was Quilt, the mostly long-haired psych-folk band of Anna Fox Rochinski, Shane Butler, and John Andrews. During the sound check, a band member indicated he was somehow being electrocuted (either by his guitar or the microphone--it was unclear)--luckily, the mishap didn't seem to impact the quality of the set. Quilt's songs were dreamy and vaguely psychedelic, and included "Arctic Shark," the band's new single out on Mexican Summer. The arrangements recalled Real Estate in their rambling, warmly reverberant guitar interludes.
TEEN, however, undeniably stole the show. The girl group, featuring a lone male trumpet player, performed a set of upbeat pop earworms punctuated by frontwoman and namesake Kristina "Teeny" Lieberson's (formerly of Here We Go Magic) strikingly impressive vocals. Lyrically, cuts by TEEN feature a lot of repetition--Lieberson and company build their songs layer by layer with lush keyboard lines, dreamy guitar riffs, and nimble vocal acrobatics. The set highlight was the band's catchy new single, "Big Talk," out earlier this month on Carpark. TEEN seems unlikely to languish in relative indie obscurity for much longer: keep an eye on them.
The last set of the night was by Eternal Summers. Earlier performers included Jawbone and Mood Rings.