photos by Zandy Mangold
It was bound to happen eventually, I guess. For the first time in the three years we’ve been doing the photo shoot for this issue, we got stuck with an absolutely miserable day. It rained from the moment I picked up the bagels, until just a little while before I stumbled out of the Bushwick Country Club and onto the street, far too drunk for it to still be light outside.
But the rain actually may have wound up helping us out. In recent years, bands have been known to choose corners — of the bar, of the ample outdoor space—and stay put, ultimately keeping inter-band conversations to a minimum. But this year, with everyone (barring a few smokers who braved the elements under a barely pitched tarp) forced to hang out inside, it turned into the kind of event we always wanted it to be: bands were mingling like socialites, to the point where it was difficult to remember who was in what band, and there was, ounce for ounce, more alcohol consumed than in any other year, by a long shot. And I don’t know if it was the booze making everyone into the best possible, carefree versions of themselves, but there wasn’t a single jerk in the bunch — no one complaining that they had to leave, asking over and over again (through their “manager”) when they’d have their photos taken, which is nice, because it’s just awful to find out that you actually despise the people in bands you really like.
And I do like them, very much. From the elegant, obscenely hooky indie-pop of pow wow! to the completely psychotic, driving 8-bit rock of Anamanaguchi, this year’s crop of bands prove once again that we’d be foolish to pack up and move to Athens or Portland or, god forbid, Philly, the way we always say we’re going to.
Special thanks to John from the Bushwick Country Club, who continues to let us take over his bar for an entire Saturday every year, plying us with all the beer, bloody marys, and pickle back shots we can handle. And if that weren’t enough, this year he even made us ribs. He is an angel, and we love him. Please go to his bar and spend all your money.