CMJ 2014 — RYN WEAVER
When “OctaHate” was first released this summer, the Internet exploded with speculation about the origins of the “brand-new” artist who, on her first spout of work, collaborated with Charli XCX, Passion Pit’s Michael Angelakos, Benny Blanco, and Cashmere Cat, all on one song. Ryn Weaver, whose real name is Aryn Wüthrich, however, wasn’t new. The talented vocalist has worked with Blanco for the past two years, and as Aryn, released a song with Cashmere Cat in 2013, all while working restaurant jobs and couch surfing in Los Angeles. In short, she had paid her dues.
Finally in the spotlight, on Wednesday Ryn Weaver headlined her first “official” show at Bowery Ballroom as a part of CMJ, following up a couple of warm-up shows at Baby’s All Right the week prior. Opening with her EP’s title track “Promises,” she sang to a sold-out crowd of obsessed fans, some of who had painted their faces in the style of the “OctaHate” music video, and industry people, all curious to see if she would live up to her Internet hype. And she certainly did.
Ryn Weaver’s strong vocals and catchy progressions were showcased by the small venue. Still finding her groove in front of the spotlight, she danced and slinked around the stage, at one point sitting on the edge of it as she sang to the crowd. The six-song set included the four tracks off her debut EP—”Promises,” a cover of Norwegian art-folk singer Susanne Sundfør’s “White Foxes,” and the unreleased, piano-backed “Here is Home.”
As expected, Ryn Weaver closed the set with her championed “OctaHate.” Leading into it, she told a heartfelt and empowering “dreams really do come true” story of realizing she wanted to pursue her music while at Bowery Ballroom just a few years ago. Prophetically proclaiming that sometimes windows open even when doors close, the crowd erupted in cheer as the opening chords played, and sang along with Ryn Weaver as she belted out the hit’s catchy lyrics. Stomping her feet to the beat, singing, “I can’t take it/From the day I saw/My heart start breaking,” with the strobe light pulsing to match, what the audience saw was the making of a performer practicing for a bigger stage.
Yelena Perlin is an art director based in New York. She moonlights as a music fanatic. Say hello to her on Twitter @yelenalena.