You came all the way to Cleveland for the CMJ/Rock Hall Music Festival
, bolstering your music-fan cred for another year. For the love of Pete, don't throw it all away by returning home without being able to tell your friends you saw Gil Mantera's Party Dream
, chosen by the Village Voice as the band that put on the best show at this year's South by Southwest Festival. The Ohio duo was doing the retro '80s thing before everyone else -- and without all that mopey Interpol business. Wearing neon sunglasses and DayGlo ski jackets, the two play pure, infectious, old-wave dance rock between stage raps that teeter from outrageous to baffling. Their latest LP, Bloodsongs, was produced by Shane X. Conry, the dance-macher behind the chart-topping remix of Madonna's "Nothing Fails." And if you're looking for outstanding indie rock, check out billmates Houseguest
and Beaten Awake.