A lot of people we spoke to about CMW were holding out for some of the celebrity acts being showcased towards the end of the week but the true music enthusiasts were on the prowl for a good live show on Day 1 of the festival. The NU crew was on site at The Drake Underground yesterday to experience Rozes open for Max Frost, and both acts blew us out of the water.
The Philadelphia native kicked things off by hitting the stage with her one and only band member, something that can often lead to not much of a live show, so we weren't too sure what to expect. Her mic stand was decorated with roses and she was also wearing a crown made from her trademark flower. After a few short moments, the drummer starts dancing like a boss while playing the intro to the first song and then Rozes punched us directly in the face with her powerful voice. When she was belting out a chorus or an emotional section of a song, she had a "Sia" like quality to her voice but when she sang a verse or something more low key she added this amazingly playful, almost theatrical quality to the melody. We were loving every minute of it and we were happy not knowing the songs before hand because of how well the duo was selling each song. What totally slipped our mind was that the the hit song "Roses" by The Chainsmokers was featuring the 23 year old girl we were currently watching!
We were reminded when Rozes surprised us all by playing the song she co-wrote with the world renowned DJ duo. It was, without a doubt, the highlight of the night and the perfect ending to the rising star's CMW showcase.
***NU Exclusive*** In a short interview with us, Rozes announced that her next release will be called "Hanging on" so keep an eye out for it!
Before Max Frost appeared, we were starring at a stage full of instruments. We saw a keyboard, drum set (with no stool), a bass guitar, electric guitar and some electronic equipment. Naturally we were expecting a band to appear but instead we witnessed the headliner walk on stage all by himself and it was pretty clear after the first intro had passed that the Austin native was a one man show that utilizes loops (like most multi-instrumental solo acts do) to build the layers required to sound like a full band while playing live. When we asked Max about his approach to looping multiple instruments, he said that his equipment and technique make it so he doesn't have to spend an excessive amount of time building the song in front of the audience and we thought that his looping technique was so affective that his song intros were the same length as any other music act. His transitions from one instrument to the next was also world class, rocking out hard on all of his instruments to give us the live energy of a drummer (played standing), guitarist, bassist, keyboard player and vocalist with a flurry of carefully planned instrument changes.
Max's set highlights for us were "Withdrawal" (listen below) and an unreleased acoustic track that he had in the vault, which he will be releasing in the near future due to an overwhelming positive response.
Also check out Max's latest track called "President" (listen below), another highlight of his CMW show.