Anybody who says they’re familiar with all the bands playing at CMJ is either uber-booker Matt McDonald or a total liar.
Now, Nonstop Sound has previously offered a list of must-see shows that we stand by. But with more than a trillion bands playing (a trillion being a completely mathematically correct figure we triple checked), we figured it couldn't hurt to take another crack at helping you plan your CMJ experience.
We based our earlier list on “artistic merit.” This list is more artfully based on the most ... interesting ... artist names in the official CMJ guide.
Some band names are awesome, some band names are "awesome," and some band names can't even be justified with quote marks. But band names are a totally valid way of judging whether to hit up a showcase. In 2008 this particular writer was looking for a way to kill time before Jay Reatard played the Bowery Ballroom, and wandered into a show at the Cake Shop because the bands playing had funny names. That night Cut Off Your Hands and The Pains Of Being Pure At Heart blew this writer away, and remain current favorites. Maybe you’ll have similar luck with Raccoon Fighter.
The "Best" Band Names Of the 2011 CMJ Music Marathon
The Bottom Dollars
Exes Of Evil
The Golden Awesome
Math The Band
Me You Us Them
Peanut Butter Lovesickle
Sex With Strangers
Two Man Gentlemen Band
You Say France & I Whistle