Now in its fourth year, the founders of CMJ continue to bring the Music Conference life back into the New York City area
Now in its fourth year, Mondo.NYC, a Global Business Summit and Music Festival, starts today in Williamsburg, Brooklyn and will run through Friday the 18th.
By day, Mondo is an incubator for the music and tech industries, curating panels, talks, workshops, startup showcases, and investor events foster robust opportunities for networking, collaboration and learning, spotlighting the advancements of blockchain, VR and AI into the ever-evolving landscape of the music industry heading into its second decade of the 21st century. Among the names highlighted amongst this year’s featured speakers include Michelle Shocked, the Reverend Al Sharpton, City Winery’s Michael Dorf, DJ Spooky, veteran music publicists Fiona Bloom and Regina Joskow, Variety Senior Music Editor (and CMJ alumnus) Jem Aswad and Hank Shocklee among others.
In the evening, however, Mondo is a platform for emerging artists from around the globe performing all over Brooklyn and Manhattan, just like the old CMJ Marathon that festival founders Bobby Haber and JoAnn Abbott-Green to give SXSW a massive run for its money throughout the 90s and the first decade of the 00s. And while the schedule might not include any names to send the fickle hipster hordes of Bourgwick to descend upon the event, perhaps a few adventurous souls who still love music simply for the sake of experiencing it without pretext or Pitchfork-graded approval.
If you are taking in this most underrated and essential music conference this week, here are five acts to catch during your travels.
VIDEO: Wanderers “Loco”
After spending the last two years touring the span of their Australian homeland, including performances at the continent’s largest music festivals in the Queenscliff Music Festival and the Woodford Folk Festival, Adelaide’s own Wanderers make the 24-hour flight across the globe to perform at Mondo this year at one of the last vestiges of the old new Lower East Side, The Delancey. The sound of this dynamic duo might be rooted in classic Motown, but the way by which these cats channel it on their latest single “Make It On My Own” it comes across like Look Sharp-era Joe Jackson trying to re-wire David Bowie’s Young Americans for a new millennium. If there’s one group to catch at MONDO this year, Wanderers are the one. Michael Hutchence is smiling down on Heaven at these guys.
October 16th, 2019
VIDEO: The Accidentals on Audiotree Live
Since the release of their debut album Odyssey on the Sony Masterworks label, The Accidentals have been on a roll, formulating a sound that NPR says displays “equal interest in the focused musical forms of indie rock and pop and the expansive potential of orchestral arrangements, jam band open-endedness and impressionistic singer-songwriter expression.” Their fiery new live album is a flavorful taste of what these folks will be bringing to the DROM stage tonight, where they are sure to test out material from their anticipated sophomore set Vessel, due out in 2020.
VIDEO: The Fleshtones at Sala Zero 2019
Since 1976, Queens’ The Fleshtones have been one of the most persistent and consistent bands to have emerged from New York City’s original punk scene. In 2020, they have a new album coming out called The Face Of The Screaming Werewolf on their current label Yep Roc Records, which will find vocalist/keyboardist Peter Zaremba, guitarist Keith Streng, bassist Jan Marek Pakulski, and drummer Bill Milhizer bringing their garage-born blend of cheap Farfisa grooves, rockabilly howl, surf guitar sharpness and R&B swagger to a new level of punchiness—some of which we hope they will preview at the Bowery Electric on October 17th.
October 18, 2019
VIDEO: Pillow Queens “HowDoILook”
Following a successful European tour earlier this year in support of Rough Trade’s current crown jewel SOAK., Dublin’s Pillow Queens arrive at MONDO on the heels of an excellent EP State of the State, which BBC’s legendary DJ Steve Lamacq called “deceptively infectious, with sharp hooks and sharp nails.” A proper debut from these women is in the works for 2020, but their new single “HowDoILook”—which calls up the idea of a young Sinead O’Connor joining Sleater-Kinney in the Dig Me Out era—is a fervent taste of what’s to come from these fearless champions of the Irish LGBTQ community.
VIDEO: TAUK at Red Rocks 2018
On their new album Shapeshifter II: Outbreak, Long Island’s own TAUK continues to veer away from the jambands scene with a new direction that takes the instrumental group from Oyster Bay into a more progressive rock and jazz fusion direction channeled through the lens of atmospheric hip-hop to comment on how artificial intelligence is slowly erasing humans’ own sense of self. Seems to me these guys have been spending some serious time at Mr. Cheapo’s in Mineola digging through the vinyl for vintage Alan Parsons Project and Mahavishnu Orchestra wax, adding a new layer to their steady evolution as one of the New York City area’s most expressive rock acts.
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