Review & Interview: Sol Cat

What's the story behind your name?

How did you all get your start?

Who are your biggest musical influences?

B: I think with us, it's just so far across the board that it goes back and forth a lot. I mean, we'll kind of write a song and we'll be like, “oh, this kind of has that vibe,” and then we'll write another one. It still sounds the same to us because we're doing it, but it's definitely pretty across the board. I know I kind of grew up with a lot of soul music, and so that was kind of like my staple. And John, he's from Texas, so he had a lot of country, and Jerry's from Saint Louis, so he likes…Nelly [laughs] so it’s kind of a real hodgepodge of a lot of separate genres. I feel like everything comes together with the idea that we just make music that we love. I realize that didn’t really answer your question, but…well.

Are you trying to get any certain message across with your music?

What’s next for you guys?

Weekend @ Muchmore's CMJ 2013 Preview
Top picks for CMJ 2013

It's only a matter of days until CMJ is upon us and we thought now would be a good time to shed some light on what you can look forward to at the festival. As always, the week will be packed full of the three P's: performances, panels and parties. A full schedule of events is listed on the CMJ website but here are a few showcases that we're looking forward to in particular.

British rock icons Placebo made a name for themselves in the nineties/early noughties with their dark, pseudo glam brand of alternative rock. They will be joined at Terminal 5 by Jesca Hoop.

Event Preview: CMJ 2013
The Skins Shine at Wreckroom Record's CMJ Showcase
The Wreckroom Records showcase Saturday night at Fontana's was undoubtedly the best showcase at CMJ this year. The label, started by Entourage star Adrian Grenier, filled their showcase roster with what seemed to be the best of new talent. The Ugly Club, Blonde Summer, Slothrust, Joanna Erdos and Grenier's very own band, The Honey Brothers (also a shining act that night) entertained the sold out venue, but Brooklyn-based band The Skins caught everyone's attention that night. A mix of M.I.A, soul, punk, and rock and roll make this band (comprised of singer Bayli Mckeithan and her siblings Kaya and Reef, along with Daisy Spencer and Russell Chell) fuse together a sound that's hard to find and hard to carry out. Add all of those elements on top of Bayli's powerful vocals and you've got a band that can't go wrong. The band (who aren't even legal to drink yet) navigated the crowd through energizing hit after hit and at one point broke out into Kanye West's "Mercy" so effortlessly you would have thought they were commissioned to do it (seriously, someone send it to Mr. West).
The Midnight Beast Perform First International Show at CMJ

Coming all the way from the UK, musical comedy act The Midnight Beast made their first international debut during New York City’s very own CMJ Music Marathon. The trio kicked off their series of NYC shows at Studio at Webster Hall on Friday, Oct.19th.

If you don’t know who The Midnight Beast are, read our interview with them here or just know that they’ve been selling out 2,000 capacity venues for awhile in the UK. Needless to say, The Studio’s 200 capacity basement-like atmosphere was humbling for the band.

The Midnight Beast Invade America

UK “comedy band” The Midnight Beast have finally taken their act to the states, debuting their first set of international shows ever at the CMJ Music Marathon last week. Why the word “finally” for a band that may seem new to the scene? Because these guys are anything but new overseas and online. The hilarious trio – Stefan Abingdon, Dru Wakely and Ashley Horne – made a Youtube ripple effect when they mocked Ke$ha’s hit “Tik Tok” a few years back, prompting almost overnight viral success and even the pop-star herself claiming the parody was “better than the original.”

CMJ Showcase: Ben Gibbard at HiFi Bar

Death Cab for Cutie front man Ben Gibbard kicked off the CMJ Music Marathon on Tuesday, Oct. 16 with an intimate solo show at HiFi bar, celebrating the release of his new solo album, Former Lives. You’d be pressed to find anyone who can say they’ve recently watched the indie icon perform his hit songs at a dive bar, but the lucky 160 people in attendance last night could.

To be exact, Gibbard played at this very dive bar - more famously known as "Brownies" - 12 years ago in 2000, when he wasn't such a familiar name. “I started playing at Brownies and on Barsuk Records,” Gibbard remarked while tuning his guitar, “And now I’m back at Brownies and on Barsuk Records. What happened? The last 12 years didn’t exist.”

CMJ Music Marathon Set to Take Over NYC

The legendary CMJ Music Marathon is set to take over New York City for five non-stop days from October 16-20th. In addition to concerts, attendees also can take part in panels, seminars, Q&As, parties, meet and greets and more.

Every year music writers, industry folk, upcoming bands and music super-fans flock to over 80 venues in the city to check out the latest, greatest and newest in the music scene. The longest running marathon of its kind also boasts more popular acts, this year being the likes of Ghostface Killah and the Mountain Goats.

This is the most important discovery platform for any new artist, and CMJ lives up to that fact. Some acts that got their start playing this very same festival are Lady Gaga, Mumford & Sons, Arcade Fire and Jason Mraz…maybe you’ve heard of them?

Grimes: The Black Swan