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CMJ Warm-Up: Buns In The Oven

Nash_3 All J.I. wanted to do last night (Oct. 15) was watch the Indians/Red Sox game on the couch before CMJ madness consumes the rest of the week, but we couldn't resist a last-minute invite to see the National play a private show at NYC's new-ish Highline Ballroom.

Last week, the group had helped open the new midtown venue Terminal 5 in front of 3,000 fans, by far its biggest headlining show in the city to date. But last night was a much more intimate affair hosted by Rhapsody and featuring free Jameson. Guitarist Aaron Dessner even indulged an Ohio friend's semi-drunken requests for licks from the Allman Brothers Band's "Blue Sky" and Dylan's "All Along the Watchtower."

The set was pretty stupendous, with the first three songs ("Start a War," "Mistaken for Strangers," "Secret Meeting") particularly sizzling. No offense to the Little Ones and Pela, who played before, but the National (photo above: Harris Damashek) blew them off the stage. Other highlights: "Abel," "Mr. November" and "Ada," prime slices of dramatic indie rock.

Backstage afterward, J.I. and crew ate nearly all the Krackel from a bag of Hershey's Miniatures and contributed to the frittering away of the beer supply, while distracting Dessner from loading out his gear. He kindly revealed to us that there's a new album afoot from his twin brother Bryce's side band, the Clogs, which should be out in the spring. My Brightest Diamond's Shara Worden is singing on a number of tracks -- you heard it hear first.

CMJ begins in earnest today, and Jaded Insider will be your home for coverage from the Billboard team. Have fun, don't binge drink, and go Tribe! -- Jonathan Cohen

October 16, 2007 in CMJ | Permalink


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awesome show great venue...

Posted by: hdamashek | Oct 16, 2007 11:29:51 AM

When I was in my late teens a friend of mine, an elite athlete, gave me the most profound yet simple advice that changed the way I would view myself forever. He told me "You yourself have to think you're great because no one else is going to tell you that you are."

Posted by: tiffany silver | Jan 4, 2010 10:49:09 PM

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