Mikey B trippin: CMJ part 1

M for Mikey reports on NYC’s CMJ Music Marathon.

new mikey picI hit the road on a colourful drive to NYC for the CMJ Music Marathon, my seventh time. I remember my first CMJ back when Malajube was one of the highlights of the festival. This year, the highlight was Banksy sneaking around town raping the city’s property.

I won’t bother describing NYC ’cause it’s like Disneyland — everybody knows it. As usual, the ladies had style for miles, and it’s very hard-on me, if ya know what I mean. But that was nothing compared to all the overweight police officers flaunting fancy machine guns like they were iPads.  The urine smell wasn’t as strong as usual, so I never had to use my nose plug.

My first show of the festival was the Arts & Crafts showcase at Cakeshop, a dark, dungeon-like basement where you can pee anywhere with nobody giving a shit. I was front row with some brews for the Darcys: tight alt-rock with Canadian balls. These slim boys with nice sets of hair are from Toronto, but they sound more like they’re from a place with heavier snowstorms. Everything just flows nicely.


The next night, I met up with John Kastner, ex-singer from the Doughboys. He showered me with wisdom and we showered each other with whisky. The MTL legend’s been repping the North by Northeast festival for years but recently made a big move to Canadian Music Week. This just means CMW’s gonna look sexy next year, and I’m gonna hit that for sure. Kastner’s been rolling deep on red carpets lately with his girlfriend Jessica Paré of Mad Men. The dude’s a wizard, and his dreads remind me of the better days.

That night, I was blown away by Liverpool’s Dan Croll. It was love at first bass. I honestly thought I was seeing the re-birth of Elvis Costello. These young boys can barely grow facial hair, and I feel like a pervert for drooling over them for 45 minutes straight. They’ve never been to MTL but the day they do, let’s hook up. My revelation of the festival. See their music video here.

At the very end of the night, I was drunk enough to order and scarf down a $20 brisket sandwich at the landmark Katz’s on Houston Street. I stumble into that place once a year, but after looking at the menu prices, I back out laughing, telling myself to hit up Schwartz’s when I get back home. But this time, I went all out and my digestive system won’t forgive me. I was then on a mission for Alka-Seltzer, Tums and sleep. ■
Tomorrow on Cult MTL, read about how Montreal bands fared at CMJ 2013
Who is M for Mikey?

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