The CMJ Music and Film Marathon, which runs from Oct. 19-23, is all about new music, but each year the hundreds of unknowns are joined by a few really well-knowns. We predict the following shows will be the hardest to get into this year.
1. Ghostface Killah: Duh. This Wu-Tang Clan member demonstrated a long time ago that he can hold his own as a solo act. His most recent album, last year’s “Ghostdini,” proved that the rapper is still in demand.
Oct. 22: B.B. King Blues Club, 10:30 p.m.
2. Phoenix: This French pop act has been a perennial favorite among the indie kids. With “Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix,” they propelled themselves into the mainstream without alienating the early adopters.
Oct. 20: Madison Square Garden, 7 p.m.
3. Deakin: He’s not a big name on his own, but he’s a founding member of Animal Collective. Bandmate Avey Tare is DJing a show during CMJ, but we think Deakin, who is playing live, will be the real draw.
Oct. 21: Cake Shop, 7 p.m.
4. The Drumsand Surfer Blood: It’s a one-two punch of lo-fi rock cool. Both of these bands are on the receiving end of the right amount of hype, and the combo should be impossible for hipsters to resist.
Oct. 20: Webster Hall, 7 p.m.
5. Neon Indian: The band’s retro-electro sound is huge right now, and they’ve got a pedigree: Pitchfork named “Psychic Chasms” one of the best albums of 2009, and Rolling Stone has called them one of the best new bands of 2010.
Oct. 23: Bowery Ballroom, 5 p.m.
If you prefer to take a chance:
We make no claims about the following bands except that they have kick-ass names:
The Arms Akimbo — Oct. 20: Fontanas, 7 p.m.
Dead to Me — Oct. 23: Music Hall of Williamsburg, 6:30 p.m.
Hank & Cupcakes — Oct. 22: the Delancey, 9:30 p.m. (CHECK THIS)
Ringo Deathstarr — Oct. 22: Spike Hill, 12:30 p.m.
Uncle Bad Touch — TBD