Archive: July, 2009
Remember Pterodactyl, the Kenzo art space we told you about last month? Sherri Hospedales wrote a preview of it when the owners were prepping for their art classes on photography, screen printing and sewing:
At Pterodactyl, you don't have to be Picasso to get creative. Heck, you don't even have to be a kinda OK art school student. That's because Paul Yavarone Jr. and Catherine Dentino, who named their new creative project space after their love of dinosaurs and their "laid-back attitude toward art," think the artistic playing field should be leveled. "We want to bring the practice of making art into everyday life," says Dentino. "Everyone should be able to make art."
As founder of the Big Art Show, Yavarone Jr. knows a bit about art by the masses ' his event allows anyone to display their works for free, on a first-come, first-served basis. Dentino brings her skills as a photographer, as well as the master's degree in arts and cultural management that she's pursuing at Pratt Institute, to Pterodactyl.
Well, this weekend the Pterodactyl folks are putting on a fundraiser that'll feature visual art, video and music by the bands mentioned above. Among the 20-some visual artists will be Brandon Hardy, Katie VanVliet, Eric C. Veit, Darrin Prey-Harbaugh and Jesse Ringu. The latter, by the way, had his work featured on the front cover of CP's 2008 Comics Issue. It was that image of a cute/scary robot that was simultaneously begging for love and chasing you with a weapon. Oh yeah, did we mention we're accepting submissions for this year's issue?
|Matt Sutter's comic from last year|
Just a reminder: We're currently accepting submissions for City Paper's 2009 Comics Issue. Our favorites get published in the paper! In color! Even more get posted in an online slideshow! You can do it! Look at last year's Comics Issue!
Photos by Brian Howard and Carolyn Huckabay
You could tell that Craig Finn and his band of bar-rock all-stars didn't want to leave the stage. To that point, the set ' the closing Saturday set of WXPN's XPoNential Music Festival ' had been a vintage performance. Finn pogo-ing around the stage, clapping excitedly, making I've-been-naughty faces and pointing expectantly out to the crowd. Franz Nicolay holding sway at stage right. Tad Kubler grinding out the extra-chunky riffs.
There was "Positive Jam" into "Stuck Between Stations" into "Sequestered in Memphis."
"Chips Ahoy!" into "Massive Nights" into "Party Pit."
Then the wind picked up and the rain started to fall. Lightly at first as the band played the ballad-y "Southtown Girls"; more heavily and with gusts of wind through "Lord, I'm Discouraged."
It was during "Lord" that the stage hand first popped out and gave a signal that could have meant "one more and wrap-it-up" and could have meant "round third and head home." Finn may have seen it and then turned quickly away (or he might have never seen it through those thick, rain-speckled glasses) as the band launched into "Hornets! Hornets!"
The rain coming off the river gusted through the back of the stage and into the faces of the crowd, who very much lapped up this act of rock heroism. Like a scene from some late-'80s hair metal video (all that was missing were a smoke machine and fishnet-clad groupies), the band played, the wind and the rain at their backs, the confetti from the previous They Might Be Giants set kicking up and swirling about. The lighting rig above swayed ominously in the gale.
And that's when the stage hand couldn't risk Finn missing another signal. He walked out on stage in the middle of "Hornets! Hornets!" corralled Finn and said something in his ear, which prompted Finn to call off the band mid-verse, apologize to the crowd for having to stop the set due to safety issues and, like a true champ, promise to play more if the weather cleared up. Then WXPN's Roger LaMay broke the bad news that thunderstorms were expected for the rest of the evening and that everyone should get home and come back dry for more music Sunday.
According to a commenter on Facebook, the rest of the Hold Steady set was to include "Stay Positive," "Hot Soft Light," "Joke About Jamaica," "Constructive Summer," "Multitude of Casualties" and "Slapped Actress." All of which would have been great. But the set was plenty great as is.
When I get into it I can't tell if you are watching me twirling the stick.
It's been a few years since I last saw TMBG, but there was a time when I never missed a show. Catching them, again, finally, at twilight at XPoNential was kinda awesome. I mean, yeah, they played some stuff from their children's albums, which I didn't dig. And John Flansburgh seemed to introduce the band an inordinate number of times. But they sounded great, from the accordions to the horn section to the guitar to John Linnell's voice, and ripped through a career-spanning setlist: "Ana Ng," "Birdhouse in Your Soul," "The Guitar," "Dr. Worm." "The Mesopotamians," and a bunch more (not in that order). Unless I'm mistaken, they completely skipped what I think was their best album, John Henry. No need to be picky. The played "Spider" and "Older" and "Dig My Grave" and it all rocked in that weird, fun way. They left the stage with Flans encouraging everybody to stick around for their Brooklyn neighbors The Hold Steady, "the only band that matters." Read into that what you will, then take a sec to appreciate the complete strangeness of a bill that could include these two utterly incongruous bands.
Our favorite Philly-based dance-punk-rockin duo GANG are trying to win some contest on Spin (it comes from the center of the) Earth. I don't know what it is but I know you should vote for them.
Recapping True Blood each and every Monday.
This one goes out to all the ladies.
'Hard-Hearted Hannah' is a tribute to estrogen, whether it be within a human, vampire, shape-shifter or something else altogether because it's the ladies of True Blood who really are the ones that possess the proverbial testicles.
|Jesus is our homboy.|
In the lobby of Hotel Carmilla, Eric meets with Bill's sire Lorena (Mariana Klaveno). He enlists her help to keep Bill from Sookie, so that Sookie can infiltrate the Fellowship of the Sun without a safety net and find Godric. This leads to some faded flashbacks of Bill (disguised as 'Guillaume,' the French pianist) and Lorena's good-old days of going flapper-happy on top of bloody and gurgling bodies in the '20s.
Upstairs in the hotel, local vampiress Isabel offers up her human love, Hugo (Christopher Gartin), to help Sookie infiltrate the Fellowship. While the two humans devise their plan alone later at the hotel bar, Hugo asks Sookie if the issue of 'turning' has come up. Hugo suggests that this is the ultimate goal, so they can stay forever young with their vampire loves, but Sookie dismisses the idea ' undoubtedly to be revisited later.
At the Fellowship compound, Jason and frenemy Luke (Wes Brown) are chosen to build a ceremonial platform to kill a vampire (in this case, Godric). While nailing and screwing, they discuss what type of pre-marital sex is most sinful (concluding it would be doing it with a 'Vampire dude') and Jason considers abstinence. It doesn't last long, however, as Sarah Newlin convinces him that it is God's will that they get it on, and they do so, in the chapel balcony ,nonetheless.
Sookie and Hugo arrive at the compound, and pose as a soon-to-be married couple, but Steve Newlin is not convinced. After giving them a tour of the chapel, he manages to throw them into the church's dungeon of doom. Bill awakens in the hotel to Sookie's screams, but is unable to reach her as Lorena is suddenly on top of him, holding him down.
That night in Bon Temps, after going for a playful jaunt as dog and pig, Sam and Daphne return to human form. Sam asks what the audience is thinking, 'Why did you turn into a pig this time?' Which is a good question, considering it's the same pig that was housed at Maryann's house a few orgies back. Two-and-two are quickly put together, as Daphne tricks Sam into going to a Maryann orgy-in-progress. He's captured by revelers and held strong, while around him Bon Temps residents thrust and grind under Maryann's spell. Daphne places a bull-shaped mask over Maryann's head and it's pretty clear that hell is soon to break loose.
Last week, arts editor extraordinaire Carolyn Huckabay noted how she had just watched the movie Hot Fuzz. Her BF Facebooked the experience positively and he was met with a deluge of comments agreeing that it was the best movie ever. She wanted to know what brought on this degree of of fanaticism. I totally get it: Easily recognizable film tropes (cop/action movies for Hot Fuzz, zombie movies for Simon Pegg/Edgar Wright/Nick Frost previous collabo Shaun of the Dead) lampooned with love.
But it all began with their sitcom Spaced, about Tim (Pegg) and Daisy (Jessica Hynes) who pretend to be married in order to rent a flat. It's the classic sitcom formula ' a man and a woman in a strange situation, surrounded by a cast of wacky supporting characters. But these characters are not of the similar, based in reality weirdos that populate the television landscape. These people are fucked, like Tim's war-loving BFF Mike (Frost, surely one of the great sidemen) and Brian, the troubled artist who may or may not be a serial killer. It's British comedy, so Tim and Daisy are endearing because they are down-and-out losers just like you and me. Like serious losers. It's not schadenfreude, per se, more like a mirror of your own shortcomings. Which may be worse. And like all will-they-or-won't-they?!?! American sitcoms, there's entirely no sexual chemistry ' ever ' between Tim and Daisy. They just want to be flatmates, and that's refreshing. It's also not constructed like a sitcom; Wright plays with temporality and the juxtaposition of scenes that points to his future career in film. But the biggest difference is that the writing doesn't wait for you to laugh. If you've missed the joke, you don't deserve to think it's funny anyway. Hulu just put up seasons one and two. Embedded above is the pilot, which happens to be my fave.
My equally-Spaced-obsessed friend Emily are in a British TV drought. We've done the classics ' Black Adder, Fawlty Towers ' and some new shows released over here ' The Office, Alan Partridge, Skins. Because we don't watch enough American TV ('), we need suggestions. Hit me up with your favorite TV show to satiate our Anglophilia.
Monday: Math-rock riffs of epic proportions combined with dancey beats and madness make So Many Dynamos so worth looking into. With Cast Spells & Many Arms, 8-11pm, $5-$10, Danger Danger Gallery, 5013 Baltimore Ave.
Tuesday: A raid of your father's record collection would surely land you at least one album by these Prog masters ' Yes feature extravagant compositions, sometimes-catchy melodies (Remember "Owner of a Lonely Heart"?), but mainly a wicked bassist (Chris Squire plays his like lead guitar). With Asia, 8 p.m., $45-$95, Tower Theater, 69th & Ludlow streets, Upper Darby, 610-352-2887.
Wednesday: Amanda Blank is Philly's dirty (not like Fergie) home-girl rapper. Everyone is going crazy anticipating her solo debut I Love You, due out next week. I cannot get enough of her sleazy sex-laced rhymes. Check out the City Paper cover story here. With Yeah Yeah Yeahs, 8:30 p.m., $25, Electric Factory, 421 N. Seventh St., 215-627-1332.
Thursday: Fleet Foxes capture the spirit of the forest and country life with their Americana tunes. The simple yet searing songwriting of Robin Pecknold accompanied by the band's graceful (almost gospel-like) harmonies create perfect folk songs that sound like they could have been released 30+ years ago. With Espers, 8:30 p.m., $25, Electric Factory, 421 N. Seventh St., 215-627-1332.
Friday: The Saddle Creek indie-rockers Cursive will perform a ton of their old stuff at this show, so it is definitely a must for fans. They play pop-punky indie infused with elements of noise and post-hardcore to create a unique sound. With Love Language at the First Unitarian Church, $13, 8:30pm, 22nd and Chestnut streets.
Saturday: The Clipse have been busting up the charts with their gritty rhymes for nearly a decade. With number one singles and amazing collaborations with the likes of Pharell, Kanye West and The Neptunes, you really can't go wrong. With J. Cole, $18, 8 p.m., at the Starlight Ballroom, 460 N. Ninth St.
|Photos by Brion Shreffler|
More textured with each rise though still incredibly smooth
The small crowd, packed in their pews in the intimate setting, came to quiet, Zee's opening delivery nuanced and plangent while her eyes cast a soothing gaze. She had the presence ' and sound ' of a grandmotherly jazz singer dripping with nostalgia and wisdom. The music came in and we were off, following her voice which rode upon the soft trilling of her guitar, the melodies a perfect foil to send her soaring, her voice, on a heavily country number, fit for a wide angle shot in film traversing a wondrous vista. The amazing thing was that Zee, renowned for the depth she's capable of at 23, so deftly accessed a retinue of emotions with great subtlety on her most upbeat tracks (i.e. 'Honey Bee,' 'The Traveler'), that varied from jazz backed numbers to a Malaysian island backed sound aided by her ukulele. A quivering emotion was sensed in the chorus for 'Bitter Heart,' her voice more textured with each rise though still incredibly smooth. She didn't simply recall Patsy Cline or June Carter Cash, she quite readily displayed their range while treating us to her unique sound. She ended with two transformative reinventions; The Clash's 'I Fought The Law' was given an island sway and her soulful 'First In Gang To Die,' (Morrissey) was jaw-dropping, leaving us to feel that it wasn't "Hector" who 'stole our hearts away.'
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