Archive: March, 2010
Collectors of pretty things, take note: Every Friday Monday, we're rounding up a what's-what of what we [heart], culled from the scores of design blogs, artist sites and Etsy treasuries we can't help but stalk on the regular.
Owls are so 2009, are we right? Spring got all official on us Saturday, and even though today's forecast calls for rain, we're living for tomorrow. And tomorrow, there are bunnies. We're seeing the little guys everywhere (Easter may have something to do with it), and we think it's high time Peter Cottontail and his cohorts bounce into the spotlight.
Where do we start? There are seriously a million bunnies to talk about today, so let's begin with Poppytalk Handmade's Celebrate Spring and Everything Hippity Hop (yes, that's what it's called) collection. We found four items that particularly sum up how we're feeling about spring: hoppy! (Sorry.) The images speak for themselves, and all images are linked right to the sites we found 'em. From left to right: Rabbit gift bag (set of 10), $8, Humunuku via etsy.com. Pink Fabric-Eared Bunny print, $20, Kiki and Polly via etsy.com. Peter Cottontail card, $4, Inkadinkadoodle via etsy.com. Corn Bandit mixed-media assemblage, $40, Amy Rice via artstreamstudios.com. All spied first at poppytalkhandmade.com.
Next up: The Storque, Etsy's handmade-goodies blog, is shouting out all things European this week, and nestled in a long list of transatlantic crafts we found this precious-slash-ghostly bunny sculpture from Belgium-based Art Mind. It's a bit pricey especially when you add $14.50 to have it shipped to the U.S. but it totally beats out every lame Easter decoration I've seen. Especially if you display it backside-front. $75, etsy.com/shop/ArtMind. Spied first at The Storque.
Need a brighter bunny? Understandable. For a complete 180 from pallid bunny butts, check out SoCal designer Em and Sprout's line of sugar-sweet mary-janes. They're the same arch-support-less kind you could swipe from a bucket at Free People (do those still exist?), but way, way cuter with sweet, pastel embellishments. These yellow numbers, called Pink Lemonade, come in various sizes, and could totally work as summer slippers if you're not brave enough to bring them outside. $24, etsy.com/shop/emandsprout. Spied first at Mighty Goods.
Speaking of sweet: Australian artist MOZI has come out with a line of Girls Can Tell-reminiscent tea towels and we'd be remiss not to include the Hot Cross Buns edition, complete with bunny drawings and complete, detailed recipe. Also on MOZI's agenda: Orange and Poppyseed Cake (orange) and Breakfast in Bed (pink). $19.95, mozi.com/au. Spied first at Poppytalk.
PREVIOUSLY >> COVETED: That's a wrap
When we're not editing and writing and proofing and stressing, we A&E editors keep busy getting our culture on. We watch TV, we go to the movies, we attend rock shows and theater performances and workshops hell, we even occasionally go to the ballet. (Mostly, we watch TV.)
Since we (that'd be Patrick Rapa, music editor; Carolyn Huckabay, arts editor; Molly Eichel, movies/agenda editor; and occasionally Holly Otterbein, staff writer/arts patron) know Philly's teeming with artsy happenings, we'll give you a weekly roundup of where we've been and what we've seen. But we can't see it all.
We're taking a cue from Team Meal Ticket who diligently report on how they've spent their foodie weekends and opening the floor to you: Leave a comment and let us know what you've been up to since Friday at 5.
CH: Carolyn Huckabay
HO: Holly Otterbein
ME: Molly Eichel
What We Watched:
Saturday night, I attended the closing performance of Kun Yang/Lin Dancers' spring show at the Painted Bride (which we previewed). Highlights: a white-faced solo dancer who somehow held a giant, open fan in his mouth for 10 minutes; passionate, sometimes angry couples dancing out their relationship woes in the world premiere of Autumn Skin; the adorable older woman who read a show-opening poem; the presence of Scott McPheeters. CH
I'm late to the Breaking Bad party so I've just seen the pilot (the third season premiered last night on AMC). But holy mobile meth lab, is that episode good. Bryan Cranston is pitch-perfect as the cancer stricken amateur drug dealer Walt and Aaron Paul comes outta nowhere as Walt's former chem student turned meth-dealing mentor. The pace of the show is just fantastic: The pilot starts strong, gripping from the beginning and never letting you go. I'm excited to watch the rest. ME
Sunday evening I watched Up in the Air, and basically cried throughout the entire thing. Something about the look on George Clooney's face when he realizes his own inevitable isolation broke my heart. CH
Saw The Devil and Daniel Johnston (thank you frighteningly spot-on Netflix recommendations!), a sad, sad documentary about the titular musician whose mental illness creeps up on him in his early 20s, wrapping itself around his Christian fundamentalist background and relationship with his mother. I don't even know his music that well and still liked it it's nice to see a "crazy artist" not romanticized. HO
Watched Italian flick/Palm d'Or runner-up Vincere about Mussolini's alleged first wife Ida Dasler, who he had committed so she wouldn't cause trouble and No Crossover: The Trial of Allen Iverson by Hoop Dreams director Steve James. Too bad I can't tell you what I thought yet. You'll have to wait until I write the reviews (Vincere opens Friday, March 26 April 2 at the Ritz Five and No Crossover gets its Philly debut at the Philadelphia Film Society's spring mini-fest). ME
What We Read:
I spent the majority of my Sat./Sun. lounging on the banks of the Schuylkill, which essentially bars me from reading anything of weight or substance. So I picked up the first entry in the Sookie Stackhouse novels by Charlaine Harris because a) I like True Blood and b) my boyfriend had it at his house. It's not well written; Harris isn't Faulkner, or even Rice for that matter. But it's perfect for riverside lounging. ME
I've recently decided to take on the behemoth Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace, so I read a little of that, and then when I started drowning in the footnotes and feeling lazy, I read a few of his short stories and essays. "Consider the Lobster" is great, but I regretted reading it when I went to the Italian Market later that day. HO
Finished a must-read article for any movie on Clint Eastwood by David Denby from the New Yorker. I hate on Denby (I'm an Anthony Lane girl, myself) but Clint is my ultimate badass icon and my affinity for him would be described by some as fanatic obsession. [No, seriously, this poster is hanging directly behind me. Or simply ask something like "What movie does Clint look best shirtless? (The Beguiled) Or, "What is Clint's best line?" (From Magnum Force Sunny: What does a girl have to do to go to bed with you? Harry Callahan: Try knocking on the door.)] Swooooon. ME
What We Listen To:
During the winter, I mostly like to listen to the solemn Bruce Springsteen records (Darkness on the Edge of Town, Nebraska, second disc of The River) but during the summer, I switch over to the bouncier ones (The Wild, the Innocent and the E Street Shuffle, Born in the U.S.A., first disc of The River). But it's an interim season so I went with the first disc of Live, 1975-1985 because I listen to the third disc too much. For the record, I listen to Born to Run all the time. ME
I thought it only appropriate to listen to nice-weather music, so spent the weekend with the easy, breezy Toy Soldiers and The Spinning Leaves. Do they know each other? They really should. HO
Can I get a hell yeah on how motherfucking epic Titus Andronicus' The Monitor is? Ep-Ic. ME
My love of Janelle Monáe was stoked by her recent Philly appearances, so I also rocked out to her Chase EP. Can't wait for the May 18 release of The ArchAndroid. Do y'all think I could rock the pompadour? ME
Where We Went:
Yelp's Philly Homegrown Party, at CITYSPACE's headquarters (which we previewed), was weird and fun and felt a little like a frat party at times, with its winding staircases and showers filled with ice. Free stuff is always cool, though, and there was plenty of that also, 'twas cool to see Kenzo art space Pterodactyl there with its own table. Venues grow up so fast! HO
|Photo | Andrew Finn|
"Can I lick it?"
Outside of the Electric Factory, Philadelphia, 11:30 p.m. Air's Jean-BenoÃ®t Dunckel hands a borrowed pen back to my friend Mike after using it to sign a few autographs, and some girl's immediate reaction is to lick it. Things weren't this totally bonkers off the bat, but all the ingredients were there.
Bright white light shone from the formidable visual effects system and was met with raucous applause as Dunckel, Nicolas Godin and their drummer appeared on the stage. Air made quick work of getting all out there. They kept up momentum by only pausing between songs long enough to have a guy in a miner's cap reprogram the Dunckel's moog and another to hand Godin a new instrument to completely tear apart.
|Photo | Andrew Finn|
Dunckel played bad cop with some serious no nonsense "Yes, I will slay you with this moog" stare-downs and triumphant gazes over the mass of people transfixed in the whole journey-through-space-and-time-thing we had been expecting. Across the stage, Godin shook his head back and forth when his bass-lines got almost too crunchy, as if to say "No, no, no, not yet."
Then they entered the hilarious robo-voice vocorder portion of the set, and things started getting pretty weird. The tempo of songs picked up, and a rhythmic swell broke up the day-dream trance settling in over the crowd. Gaps between songs got smaller, one note piano-wailing got more shameless. I couldn't take notes anymore because I was stuck in an epic sandwich of French and Americans and it's impossible to listen to Air spell out "P-E-O-P-L-E-C-I-T-Y" without only thinking "hey, that's me!"
I walked out into the warm Philadelphia night with a couple firmer conclusions in my head about life. For starters, between seeing Daft Punk and Air, evidence is mounting that French bands usually have at least one robot in them. And two, for coming from a country without a space-program, these guys know how to get super spacey. Like intergalactic. Like, people wanted to lick the pens they used after the show. But, Mike got his pen back, saliva free.
Top left: Amy, Maya, Seth Aaron, Jay
We're left now with only eight designers half of what we began with and there's still no blood. No major catfights, no name-calling or hair-pulling, and no one's hand was forced through a sewing machine by an opponent. It's just been weeks of sewing, bitching and Tim Gunn.
The latest competition, in which designers were grouped into teams of two, felt like the perfect set-up for them to hate on each other. Doc Gunn told the pie-eyed babies that New York City would be the source of inspiration for this challenge. Right, because this has never been done before and it's not entirely vague and tired. What a lazy-ass assignment. Are the ProjRun writers just circle-jerking now? Are they really saying, "Well, how about we do something so totally wild? Let's make them use New York City as an inspiration! And to add an M. Night Shyamalan-sized twist, we'll make them pair off and assign each group a neighborhood. Yeah, then since each designer has their own model, we need two outfits per team. A day look and a night look! It'll be perfect!"
Pure genius, guys.
And thanks to these masterminds, we were given yet another episode that didn't end with Mila leaving the show. Very little stands between her and Bryant Park, and this makes me nervous.
Team leaders were picked from a hat and the responsibility was handed down to Anthony (who chose Maya as his partner), Amy (who picked Jonathan, duh) and Emilio (who strategically picked Seth Aaron because shock of shocks he's not a huge fan of Mila). This left Jay with the color blocker.
Anthony and Maya went to Chinatown for their day and night look. Inspired by paper dragons lining the shop windows, the two made a plunging neckline mini dress that was adorned with origami style diamonds crossing the body like a vine. The structure was killer, but sadly, the color palate was dull as piss. The beige origami looked like cardboard pieces. It was like the dress was decorated with those separators that are inside every case of beer. The day design was cut out sleeves on a classy jacket that was tailored to echo the pagoda shape without replicating it. This outfit also had a dark skirt that had two simple red details that lit up the entire piece.
The winners of the challenge were Emilio and pal Seth Aaron, who went to Harlem to pick up some inspiration. There they found lots of denim and boatloads of color. Naturally, Seth Aaron turned this into an over-worked (but impeccably tailored) jacket with high waisted jeans made from dark denim. Seth must have got a Scottish or Irish impression from Harlem (understandably, right?) because he decided to throw a bagpipe on the noggin of his model. For the team's night look, Emilio wanted to do old school, classy Harlem, like Billie Holiday. It didn't work. I'm thinking that Lady Day would never have worn a black, wrinkly, bomber-jacket-material gown with a gold zipper up the center. Just a guess, though. But it was these two doofuses that won the challenge. Fair enough, there wasn't anything better.
The bottom two teams were pathetic. Jay and Mila went to the East Village and came out with a mish mash of trash. Jay made eccentric grey pants that were more or less blah, and a black and red tank top that was, um, a tank top. He couldn't even do that well. It was so sloppy and ill-fitting that the model's lady lumps (that means boobs, right? I was never sure) were "floating around in there," as Heidi put it. Let's take this chance to blame Mila for Jay's mishap. Had he not been forced to work with that she-devil, he would not have been so clumsy in his sewing. The judges loved Mila's evening look. But why? I demand to know. I'm sick and tired of her getting away with this bullshit every single week. All she does is color block. And she only uses two colors. For anyone who missed last night's episode: you can already guess what her outfit looked like. Now just a pair of red tights and you've got Mila's latest masterpiece.
Perusing the streets of the Upper East Side and checking out the swanky architecture were sweetest buddies ever, Jonathan and Amy. Their adorable camaraderie made it more difficult to see Amy hit the road at the end of the episode. The two over designed and lost out in the end. Jonathan's cut-away handiwork was something to be admired, but the sheer flesh and charcoal colored dress was too fussy. The team mentioned that they wanted to make a shirt dress to represent the high end snobbery of Manhattan's ritziest neighborhood. Instead of something simple and flattering, Amy made a peachy, pleated mess. The saddest moments came with Jonathan's tearful goodbye to his friend. Then his tearful confession booth monologue about her amazing personality. Then the shots of Jonathan wiping away tears and trying to be happy.
Jonathan, you're great, but it's time to sack up. She was, after all, your competition.
So, you're psyched about the new Runaways biopic, yeah? You listened to the teenage punkers play "Cherry Bomb," you're gearing up for their new biopic (after reading Shaun Brady's review, course) and you were clearly pumped about my interview with Dakota Fanning (who plays leader Cherie Currie) this morning. But now it's time to rock your face off.
We have two count 'em two Runaways soundtracks to give away to some lucky readers who answer our trivia questions. But first, the epic tracklist:
1. Nick Gilder â "Roxy Roller"
2. Suzi Quatro â "The Wild One"
3. MC5 â "It's A Man's Man's Man's World"
4. David Bowie â "Rebel Rebel"
5. Dakota Fanning â "Cherry Bomb"
6. The Runaway â "Hollywood"
7. Dakota Fanning â "California Paradise"
8. The Runaways â "You Drive Me Wild"
9. Dakota Fanning & Kristen Stewart â "Queens Of Noise"
10. Kristen Stewart & Dakota Fanning â "Dead End Justice"
11. The Stooges â "I Wanna Be Your Dog"
12. The Runaways â "I Wanna Be Where The Boys Are (Live)"
13. Sex Pistols â "Pretty Vacant"
14. Joan Jett â "Don't Abuse Me"
On to the questions! To answer, e-mail molly [dot] eichel [at] citypaper [dot] net. If you leave answers in the comments, I will personally come to your house and kick your ass, girl-rocker-style.:
1. Runaways lead singer Cherie Currie was in the movie Foxes after her Runaways tenure. Two of her co-stars starred in a movie about child gangsters. Who were they and what was the movie?
2. Currie loves David Bowie. What member of The Runaways film team has famously worked with Bowie before?
3. Kristen Stewart and one of her Twilight co-stars both have movies other than The Runaways in theaters now. What are they?
|"Floating World," lithograph and ink jet, 22" x 30"|
Bringing you more Philagrafika coverage.
The heroines of Jenny Schmid's works are deceptively childlike, with their cutesy outfits and oversized heads and eyes, but there's more to these girls than meets the eye. Schmid grew up in Seattle during the reign of the riot grrrl movement and brings that revolutionary spirit to her art. Drawing on the history of printmaking as well as contemporary culture, she creates a playful commentary on gender, politics and identity. Schmid was a part of the "Outlaw Printmakers" exhibit in New York and currently shows off her sense of keen observation to her Web site, Bikini Press International. Her animation piece, which employs Egyptian influences and her trademark bobble-headed heroines, can currently be viewed at the Print Center (1614 Latimer St., 215-735-6090)
City Paper: Who or what moves you?
Jenny Schmid: One of the reasons I became an artist is that I realized it could incorporate all my varied interests. I will just list my most recent influences in no particular order: a recent trip to Egypt, feminist non-fiction, Persian miniatures, Medieval engraving and anyone who is taking a risk by being themselves (despite gender expectations).
CP: Why are you drawn to and so frequently depict female characters?
JS: I have an undergraduate degree in political science and have been an avid reader of political theory. I grew up in grunge-era Seattle and was playing in bands after college -- at a time when riot grrrls movements were starting and people were finding ways to address gender disparity is subversive and creative ways. I see feminism as supporting anyone who wants to live outside the false dichotomy of stereotyped gender roles. I do draw both boys and girls, but I see the iconic girl as the empowered symbol of future liberation.
CP: The subjects of your art are often disproportional and distorted. What commentary do you feel depiction this conveys?
JS: I am very attracted to any character with an oversized head. In some ways it is an easy bobble-head strategy to add humor, which is essential to my work. I have poetically explored the idea of the big head in a short animation I made with Patrick Holbrook that you can see on Vimeo.
The big head draws attention to the character's psychology, so, although you might be checking out her cute outfit, the viewer is always drawn back to her face and what she is experiencing. People often say my characters look worried, and I think their big heads often carry the weight of the world!
CP: Why do you feel print-making is the appropriate medium for your artistic messages?
JS: I enjoy the tradition of satire in the medium and the space it occupies in between high-brow and low-brow, commercial and fine art, the cartoon and the portrait. I love the aura of history I can evoke with traditional media, while embracing a contemporary message. With its hybrid history, the medium can provide a certain freedom to be blasphemous and experimental, and I think the Philagrafika show demonstrates how open the definition of print can be. Printmakers know that technology in art is not linear. We are not in this thing to be efficient!
We can both love the history and make work that breaks with tradition (my piece in the show is an animation). I have been reading a lot about the current state of the medium, and it's great how the digital is causing a certain paradigm shift where a print might no longer be something that has to be run through a press. Printmakers are thinking more about the relationship of the original to the output and how an image can fluidly travel through a range of media.
This history provides the groundwork for multiple (no pun intended) and simultaneous interpretations of our practice. Some people (capitalists, mostly) look down on printmaking for being a craft or creating multiples; ironically, it is exactly this point of departure that allows us a certain mobility.
CP: Can you describe your exhibit for the Philagrafika festival?
JS: I made an animation piece in collaboration with Ali Momeni called "Women's Desert Liberation Front," and it includes Flash animations with HD footage and still photos from a recent trip to Egypt. Ali and I have collaborated on a number of live animation pieces and we both embrace the collision of new world and old world technologies.
We took a generator and clamped projectors onto a Jeep that was driven through the desert by our Bedouin guide. We projected live animations onto rock formations in the white desert and documented our work. Back in Minneapolis, we compiled our documentation and I started layering my animated characters over the video and photographs. We worked with Heba Amin in Egypt and Brennan Vance in Minneapolis.
The resulting piece consists of three short animations with my latest heroine as a central character. She is a burka-wearing, long-board-riding, text-messaging (the revolution) symbol of liberation!
The Philadelphia Theatre Workshop's third annual PlayShop Festival comes to a close this weekend, so we thought it apt to shout out Mark Cofta, one-half of City Paper's two-critic team that covers the depth and breadth of theater in Philadelphia. When he's not reviewing shows at the Wilma, the Arden and Theatre Exile, Cofta's been keeping busy directing Quinn D. Eli's The Sex Tape Play, slated for a final performance Saturday afternoon at Shubin Theatre.
Here's the gist:
After the breakup, who gets custody of the sex tape? When Walter notifies his ex-girlfriend Dana that he has held onto a video of the two of them making love, Dana's husband Frank is appalled, and shows up at Walter's door to demand that the tape be destroyed. But Walter, and African-American man with a grim sense of humor, takes exception to Frank, Dana's white husband. Citing "historical reasons" little things like slavery, apartheid, etc. Walter decides to take a stand by refusing to give up the tape to an increasingly agitated Frank. By the time Dana arrives to keep the two men from killing each other, she may already be too late.
The play stars Aime' Kelly, Delante Keys and Nick Martorelli, and tix are $10. Also up this weekend: The Sleep Detective, Our Lady of Balenciaga and Front Row Seat, all of which are works in progress that have evolved over the course of the festival. Visit philadelphiatheatreworkshop.org for more information on show times or to purchase tickets.
The Sex Tape Play, Sat., March 20, 2 p.m., $10, Shubin Theatre, 407 Bainbridge St., 215-316-1361, philadelphiatheatreworkshop.org.
Friday: The husky-voiced goddess of the big screen Kathleen Turner visits for Red Hot Patriot: The Kick-Ass Wit of Molly Ivins. It's been a couple years since Body Heat, but if she still Turners (rimshot!) you on, check out Passional's class on exploring open relationships, so maybe your gal or guy can find a little room for Ms. Turner.
Saturday: Honestly, is there anything funnier than tiny bikes? How about people in business suits riding tiny bikes. Yeah, that's why you're going to the Brompton Folder bike race today in Fairmount park. Then continue the hilarity at Studio 34's gender-nondiscriminatory Beard and Moustache Competition.
Sunday: Mama Omnibus is always in favor making turning the Lord's Day into Boozeday, so hit up the Philadelphia Real Ale Invitational at Yards, where 25 breweries from near and far will offer up their brew just for you (and whoever else buys a ticket). Then it's off to Johnny Brenda's where the ever-revolving Fruit Bats take the stage.
|Photo | Pat Rapa|
Where Wednesday was a wandering zombie-crawl of unrelated acts, Thursday was a semi-methodical trudge up and down Sixth Street from one themed showcase to another. The day started with an eMusic lunch. The tacos were good; so was the music. Especially Hooray for the Riff-Raff, a New Orleans banjo/violin / banjo/drums duo. Dark stuff sung sweetly. RIYL: Jolie Holland, the Be Good Tanyas.
Then I headed over to the Convention Center where Michael Azerrad (author of Our Band Could Be Your Life) interviewed Mac McCaughan and Laura Ballance of Merge Records. Yeah I'm an indie nerd. Besides label history, Mac and Laura talked business and longevity.
Next was the Kill Rock Stars showcase. Explode into Colours was good, but I was really there to see Quasi. The veteran Portland rockers are a trio now (frontman Sam Coomes, drummer Janet Weiss, new bassist Joanna Bolme) and due to their new guitar-forward philosophy and the shortness of their set, they didn't even bring along a keyboard. Super-high energy show. Coomes looked crazy joyous up there. I think new American Gong is their most positive yet. RIYL: Quasi.
Then on to the big Merge show, where the super special secret surprise guest was Tweeted out earlier in the day. Yep: Superchunk. The five people in front of me in line were like "Who's that? We're here to see She & Him." They talked about their favorite Zooey Deschanel movies. Then they got schooled. 'Chunk played new and old stuff in a fierce, quick set. Finished off with "Hyper Enough." Next came Let's Wrestle (British grungy kinda thing) and Radar Bros. (good ol' rock and roll). Right before She & Him came the announcement of a no-photography ban. Everybody laughed; every SXSW is basically overrun with amateur photographers (myself included) and there was no way they were gonna miss out on shooting a for-real non-indie celebrity. The place a breezy, overcrowded outdoor patio flickered like a strobe light until Zooey asked people to at least turn off the flash. Anyway, She & Him played pretty, easy, Southerly music. RIYL: A gentler Jenny Lewis.
Finished off the night by accidentally giving some drunk girl the wrong directions and then stopping by the SubPop/Hardly Art show. Out back, the super-fun Dum Dum Girls looked kinda retro but played the things kids today are listening to. RIYL: feeling happy.
I left early in Golden Triangle's set cause I'm on East Coast time, people.
I feel bad for you if you didn't go to see Janelle Monáe last night. Watching the pompadoured Goddess of Weird was a rare moment to see an artist on top of her game, right before she hits it. It's like seeing the Boss play the Main Point in the '70s or listening Aretha Franklin right after she signed with Atlantic. And mark my words, Monáe's gonna hit it huge.
Before Monáe appeared onstage, a man in tails and a top hat came on stage to announce that we "should have already Twittered this." Use your 140 characters wisely, people.
The Broadway-trained Monáe, a protÃ©gÃ© of Outkast's Big Boi, knows exactly who she wants to be as a performer and that's everything. At one moment she's a Grace Jones-robot, the next she's a disco queen, the next she's praying to at the rock 'n' roll pantheon, the next she's James Brown.
Hardest working woman in show business? You bet your ass.
It was during "Tightrope," the first single off of her new album Metropolis Suites II & III: The ArchAndroid (out May 18), that she officially became the Granddaughter of Soul, borrowing Brown's phrasing from "Sex Machine," and draping a brocade cape on her slight shoulders.
Monáe doesn't stop moving when she performs. She doesn't stop to talk and left the stage for mere minutes, as if she were a wind-up doll and she needed someone to pull the string. She doesn't just command the mic, she commands the venue. Her arms and legs jerk into position, while her core gyrates fluidily. If they happen to remake Fritz Lang's Metropolis as a musical and need a black female lead to take on Maria, Janelle Monáe is clearly the only choice.
New material from the ArchAndroid dominated the set, boding well for her first full length ("Cold War" was another set stand-out). But we really started to pump when she came out for the encore as Cindi Mayweather, an on-the-run robot, hunted for falling in love with a human, from Metropolis Suite I of IV: The Chase EP. It was a one-two-three attack of "Sincerely, Jane." "Violent Stars Happy Hunting!!!" and "Many Moons."
The only proper response: Goddamn.
She returned onstage after her encore. "I never talk," she told us. But apparently the Philly crowd was so live she couldn't help herself. So she invited her cohorts from the Wondaland Arts Society so they could sing "All the way turned up" in perfect, gospel-style harmony. "Not everyone will get this," Monáe assured us.
And you, dear reader, weren't there last night to catch it all?
Aw, don't fret too much. Josh Middleton took videos of concert for your viewing pleasure.
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