Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Tonight at SummerScreen: Raising Arizona!

Posted By on Wed, Aug 22, 2012 at 11:45 AM

Because facial hair this serious deserves to be watched on the big screen.
  • Because facial hair this serious deserves to be watched on the big screen.

Don't worry, Nic Cage fans—we didn't forget about you. Tonight at SummerScreen is our previously rained-out screening of everyone's favorite baby-napping romp, Raising Arizona!

And come early, because this week, we're bringing you music by eclectic acoustic outfit Highlife, plus the experimental folk sounds of Daniel Higgs and psychedelic rockers Endless Boogie, thanks to SHOWPAPER and Todd P!

Don’t forget to pick up your VIP tickets, which get you a comfy seat up front and center. You'll also get beer vouchers, food vouchers for all our amazing vendors, and a free dessert from CoolHaus. And you’re invited to our exclusive afterparty at the King & Grove rooftop across the street! Click here for more info.

So meet us at McCarren Park on the corner of Bedford Ave. and N. 12 Street, right in front of the tennis courts. Doors open at 6, bands will begin at 6:30, and the movie starts at 8:15. And we’ve got V Spot, Coolhaus, Cemitas, Little Muenster, Brooklyn Bangers and Pizza Moto all setting up shop to fill you up, so bring an appetite!

See you tonight!

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It's That Time of the Year When the Internet Starts Talking About CMJ

Posted By on Wed, Aug 22, 2012 at 11:31 AM

CMJ superstars
  • CMJ superstars
So here we are again, writing our annual on-the-brink-of-autumn blog post about which bands will be partaking in this year's CMJ Music Marathon as part of their ongoing efforts to, in their words, "[expose] the world's best new talent." They'll be back at it October 16-20, bringing an overwhelming array of bands to join the overwhelming array of bands already here in NYC. Buy, hey, the more the merrier. Our kindergarten teacher taught us that. Highlights thus far include: The Presets, The Walkmen, The Mountain Goats, Kimbra, GZA, OFF!, King Tuff, Killer Mike, Com Truise, DIIV, Pig Destroyer, The Jezabels, Electric Guest, Poolside, Daughn Gibson, Robert DeLong, Icona Pop, Emma Louise, Mac DeMarco, Prince Rama, Young Magic, MS MR, Sundress, The Soul Rebels and Twerps.

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Ecuadorian President Correa Now Bragging About Rape Being Legal in Ecuador

Posted By on Wed, Aug 22, 2012 at 10:45 AM

This Julian Assange apologist bullshit has got to stop. I've never seen anyone (except maybe Roman Polanski) induce otherwise reasonable people to fall all over themselves defending a rapist. Like, okay, I get it. This is a very complex situation, that has a lot of different constituencies who are focused on different things.

Wikileaks is important. The work they did was incredible. But Wikileaks is not Julian Assange. The way we are treating Bradley Manning is deplorable. That shouldn't happen to anyone, especially not someone who was ultimately doing the right thing for his country. But that doesn't mean you can just brush a few rapes under the table. Adrian Chen did a great job yesterday explaining why it makes no sense to view Sweden's demand that Assange face justice for his actions as some kind of international extradition bait-and-switch.

And Ecuador, I understand that you're pushing back against the United States muddling around on your continent. That's a completely valid thing to do. We are complete assholes, hegemony-wise. But when you're saying stuff like this:

Ecuador's president, Rafael Correa, has said Julian Assange should respond to the sexual assault allegations made against him by two Swedish women, even though the case would not in his view constitute criminal behaviour in Latin America. [The Guardian]

It might be time to reconsider your position. You're bragging that rape is not illegal in the country you are in charge of? That's not good, seriously. There is no such thing as "this guy would be a great guy if he hadn't raped those women." Sorry.

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Tuesday, August 21, 2012

New Dinosaur Jr. Video > New Avalanches Demo

Posted By on Tue, Aug 21, 2012 at 1:45 PM

Two things of note popped up on the music Interwebs this morning, one super terrific, one much less so.

The first, above, is the new Dinosaur Jr. video, released in advance of the reformed rock band's third 21st century album, I Bet on Sky. The clip, for rocking single "Watch the Corners," is weird and amazing, highlighting the eternal allure of long-haired pixel-faced bad boys on young, impressionable grocery-store clerks. Tim and Eric's Tim Heidecker plays an awesomely furious dad in it. ("So, they're not making you work in the meat department, right?" is a classic overprotective dad concern.) The video is good enough to deserve most of the press focus, but we should probably be more in awe of the song, which proves that J. Mascis will never ever run out of technically and emotionally devastating guitar solos. The band's return to their early power-trio lineup has just been a reliable geyser of quality. Far from a Pixies-esque, creatively dormant cash grab, the records they are making now are in serious contention for their best work. This level of picking up where you left off might be totally unprecedented, actually. Now on their third record in 5 years, these guys are just knocking 'em out, and making it look easy.

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Public Bathrooms Will Soon Be Even Harder To Find In New York

Posted By on Tue, Aug 21, 2012 at 12:12 PM

  • Vivienne Gucwa
You know all those times you've been out and about running errands, or out and about while blackout drunk, frantically in search of a place to pee before it's too late and the unthinkable happens?

That's about to happen a lot more often.

Thanks to new legislation signed by Mayor Bloomberg, small restaurants with a 30 person or lower occupancy will now only be required to have one bathroom for each gender on-site, as opposed to the previous requirement of two each.

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Kitty Pryde's 5 Favorite Things Right Now

Posted By on Tue, Aug 21, 2012 at 12:07 PM

Here we are with another chapter of "5 Favorite Things"—or "5 thangs," as Florida rapper Kitty Pryde put it in her email response to us. As we've established, she's quite good at the Internet like that. She's also quite good at doling out rhymes from deep within the teenage wasteland—touching on subject matter ranging from Justin Bieber's ego to writing the name of her crush on a binder—the first part of which she'll do tomorrow at Santos Party House at her second-ever NYC show. (Grab tickets here.) Thrown into her first glitter-filled, stage-diving-prone tour, what five things are helping her cope with being away from home? Glad you asked.

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In Defense of Tony Scott, Who is Dead

Posted By on Tue, Aug 21, 2012 at 10:45 AM

Just a few weeks ago, I was making the case for preferring Tony Scott to his brother Ridley Scott. Sure, at the top of Ridley's filmography you have classics and masterpieces—Blade Runner, Alien—and the divisive but fascinating Prometheus. I even adore his non-sci-fi Matchstick Men. But once you get past those four, what's left? I'd take any number of Tony Scott pictures any day. I was sorry to hear that he died on Sunday—a suicide, rumored to be brought on by a diagnosis of inoperable cancer—because now a particular sort of Hollywood moviegoing pleasure is lost.

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The Syphilis Outbreak That is Threatening Your Porn

Posted By on Tue, Aug 21, 2012 at 10:30 AM

It all started last week, with rumors of an outbreak of syphilis that a porn performer brought back from Europe:

Last Thursday, XBiz ran a story on a performer who had falsified a positive test for the STI and was still performing:

There is one male performer in the Los Angeles porn community who tested positive for syphilis in July and worked three times with a doctored STI test during the past three weeks, talent agents Shy Love and Derek Hay told XBIZ Thursday afternoon. [XBiz]

And so the Free Speech Coalition called for a moratorium on shooting both professional and amateur porn until the issue could be resolved. All performers were being urged to be re-tested—or tested in the first place, since syphilis isn't on the usual testing panel. On Monday, the Free Speech Coalition issued an update:

As a result of a performer testing positive for syphilis, APHSS providers are administering the standard RPR syphilis test that is approved by the FDA for preliminary diagnosis. A negative test does NOT mean the performer is approved to work. It is important to note that this test has a large window period — as much as 90 days — and therefore cannot be relied upon to diagnose an acute (recent) syphilis infection. More importantly, a person with an acute infection can be contagious and still test negative. We cannot rely on these tests alone to determine a performer’s availability to work. This test only provides our doctors a baseline from which to base further testing or treatment options.

Free Speech Coalition (FSC) has called a temporary moratorium on production and asks that all producers honor this moratorium. [AVN]

Fortunately, syphilis is treatable with antibiotics, so the outbreak isn't life threatening. But, as Richard Abowitz points out in the Daily Beast, the situation has an ugly resonance in the industry:

The issue of doctored tests strikes a particularly raw nerve in the adult industry, because a performer who cheated the old system is believed to have been behind a serious HIV outbreak that infected a number of porn stars in the ’90s. The current testing database was created last year by FSC in response to the sudden shuttering of the longtime clinic that served the adult industry, amid lawsuits and a controversy over alleged leaked medical records. The syphilis case is the first major test of FSC’s new system service, APHSS (Adult Protection Health and Safety Services). [Daily Beast]

How this will impact the newly-implemented condoms in porn law remains to be seen, but how it will impact all you porn obsessives is clear: reruns until further notice.

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Unicorns in Art, Part Two

Posted By on Tue, Aug 21, 2012 at 8:10 AM


Last week, we brought you unicorns in art. There were slutty, cuddly, and saintly unicorns. This week, we bring you more of the same rollicking cohort, and we added a new breed of magical creature: the modern unicorn, found in the 20th and 21st centuries.

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Monday, August 20, 2012

Photos: The Kills and Black Bananas at Hudson River Park's Pier 63

Posted By on Mon, Aug 20, 2012 at 2:27 PM


Seeing a free show this weekend with the ever-brassy (and awesome) Kills and Black Bananas as part of the "Converse City Carnage" mini-series, we were reminded that, yes, it is quite possibly better to live in New York City than any other city. Photographer Sam Polcer was there to capture it for those who weren't, so they too can be reminded.

Burn these images into your mind; we might need them in a few months when the earth starts to freeze over.

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This Week's Must-See Art Events: Brooklyn

Posted By on Mon, Aug 20, 2012 at 1:52 PM

What will happen at Flux Factorys Death Match
  • What will happen at Flux Factory's Death Match

As our planet drifts farther and farther from the sun, it leaves our island city a barren wasteland of salted sludge. All good things must DIE. So we’re squeezing out every last bit of fun we can before we hunker down for nine more months of art fairs; this week, we’ve got mostly-Brooklyn events, with a lot of emerging artists and a Flux Factory Death Match.

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Photos: So, Who Goes to See Dashboard Confessional in 2012?

Posted By on Mon, Aug 20, 2012 at 1:31 PM

In Nothing Feels Good, an examination of emo culture by former SPIN scribe Andy Greenwald, he describes the crowd gathering outside a Dashboard Confessional concert at CBGB in November 2001:
There are young girls in powder blue, midriff-baring tank tops emblazoned with the word ‘rockstar’ emerging from idling SUVs, waving goodbye to their parents behind the wheel with a dismissive nod. There are clean-cut high school boys wearing baseball hats and overly long shorts and khakis. Serious-looking 15-year-olds smile and awkwardly switch off their cell phones. There is backslapping. There are high-pitched giggles.

The events happening inside of Music Hall of Williamsburg on Saturday could’ve unfolded any night during the genre's early-aught zenith. Blue-blooded poster boy Chris Carrabba enters the stage looking just as he has every day for the past decade: Ken-doll hair, fitted jeans, snug plaid shirt revealing sleeves of tattoos. He starts into “The Good Fight,” spending the most intense portions of the song away from the mic, sweeping the stage and letting the audience take over. They know all the words. Every single one. They don't sing them, they shout them. Even years after they were filmed, those MTV Unplugged videos aren't hyperbole.

The only difference between what Greenwald witnessed eleven years ago and what's happening here are the people doing the shouting. Despite the genre becoming a punch line for most BrooklynVegan commenters, the show, billed as a solo acoustic rendition of Carrabba's band, is sold out. So was the one at Webster Hall two years ago. So who's buying tickets to these? At 37, is Carrabba still resonating with 16-year-olds? Or is this more of a nostalgia thing—presumably the same reason why Taking Back Sunday just added a second show at Terminal 5 for the 10-year anniversary of Tell All Your Friends? (And if so, why is it mocked by indie elitists when every other strain of 90s-birthed nostalgia is currently all the rage?) Or maybe, just maybe, Carrabba is still netting new fans via the powers of message boards Facebook? Talking to fans before Saturday's show, we found out that it's a little bit of all the above.

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This Week at SummerScreen: Raising Arizona!

Posted By on Mon, Aug 20, 2012 at 12:33 PM

SummerScreen: Great for the whole family.
  • SummerScreen: Great for the whole family.
No, you're not having deja-vu. This Wednesday at SummerScreen we're showing our re-scheduled ode to redneck recidivism, Raising Arizona. In arguably his best performance (although ConAir is a total contender), Nicolas Cage stars as one half of a reproductively-challenged Bonnie and Clyde in this Coen brothers classic.

This week, we're bringing you music by eclectic acoustic outfit Highlife, plus the experimental folk sounds of Daniel Higgs and psychedelic rockers Endless Boogie. Thanks to SHOWPAPER and Todd P!

And don’t forget to treat yourself to VIP tickets! Those will get you a cozy seat up front, plus vouchers that are good for a dinner from our caravan of food trucks that includes V Spot, Cemitas, Little Muenster, Brooklyn Bangers and Pizza Moto. You’ll get drink vouchers too, so pick up some beers courtesy of Sixpoint Brewery, and to top it all off, you'll get a dessert voucher that's good for a frozen treat from the Cool Haus truck. Plus, you'll be invited to an after party on the King and Grove rooftop across the street.

So we’ll see you all this Wednesday, August 22 at McCarren Park on North 12th and Bedford, right in front of the tennis courts. And leave your lawless years behind you before you arrive, please.

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Adam Green is an Artist Now

Posted By on Mon, Aug 20, 2012 at 12:08 PM


Walking into Adam Green’s Houseface exhibit (through August 25) is like walking into a Chuck-E-Cheese designed by Piet Modrian—a Chuck-E-Cheese with Macaulay Culkin and a bunch of indie rock stars splashing around in the ball-pit. And while we’re at it, replace those rubber balls with PBR cans (all of which were BYOB).

The whitewashed walls of the Bowery gallery The Hole were thickly furnished with the bright, cubed paintings by Green, most famous as the lackadaisical troubadour half of the Moldy Peaches. But over the last few years, Green has directed his strange brand of folksy man-child swagger to visual art. His first New York show, Teen Tech, opened in 2010 at the Morrison Hotel and featured neon renderings of mutant ninja turtles and papier-mâché monuments to Garfield. “I was pretty early with the whole neon trip,” the artist joked when asked about Houseface’s more primary-color palette. “It’s everywhere now.” More recently, Green launched Cartoon & Complaint, a show at Dustin Yellin’s Red Hook space The Intercourse, which featured warped, mutant-ified renderings of Elmo, Big Bird and Green’s favorite muse, Garfield.

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Rep. Todd Akin and the State of the Modern Non-Apology

Posted By on Mon, Aug 20, 2012 at 8:30 AM

If you were out yesterday enjoying the nice weather rather than hitting refresh on your Twitter client (weirdo!), you may have missed the story of Rep. Todd Akin and "legitimate rape." Akin, who is looking to nab Claire McCaskill's Senate seat in Missouri, was attempting to justify his opposition to abortion even in the case rape, when he opened his mouth a little too wide:

"First of all, from what I understand from doctors [pregnancy from rape] is really rare," Akin said. "If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down." [Atlantic Wire]

Hoo boy. The response was rapid and furious. He didn't apologize, exactly, but claimed he "misspoke." "Misspeaking"—or saying exactly what you think until you realize it makes you look like a frighteningly ignorant jackass—is just one of the many ways one can wriggle out from saying something factually incorrect without admitting wrong-doing or apologizing.

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Friday, August 17, 2012

Art Picks From Print

Posted By on Fri, Aug 17, 2012 at 4:01 PM

Red Echo, by Sam Gilliam. Photo courtesy Pocket Utopia Gallery.
  • Red Echo, by Sam Gilliam. Photo courtesy Pocket Utopia Gallery.

A roundup of recently opened, yet current and long-running exhibitions as briefly recommended in print editions of our fine magazine. Add a few of these to your list of things to do before summer ends.

Shows sooner to close appear first.

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Livestream DUMBO Summer Friday!

Posted By on Fri, Aug 17, 2012 at 3:56 PM

Hey guys, hey! Remember when we told you about DUMBO Summer Friday? Well that was no fake-out, it's happening, today, right now!

Truthfully, if you're reading this, we're pretty disappointed in you for not sneaking out of work early to day-drink. There's still time to do that!

But if that is really, truly, not an option, or if you just want a preview of all the fun you're about to have, click through to see this livestream of the event courtesy of MTV Hive. Looks great, no?

Come on down! There are Smorgasburg vendors, bands, and many more things that are much more fun than sticking around the office.

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How Well Does Japandroids' Super Summer Anthem "The House That Heaven Built" Translate Into a Folk Song?

Posted By on Fri, Aug 17, 2012 at 2:37 PM

Now imagine it with an acoustic guitar.
  • Now imagine it with an acoustic guitar.

Quite well, actually. In the hands of Beat Radio, a project resting on Long Islander Brian Sendrowitz' blend of spacey and grungy folk, it becomes suited for back-to-school bedtime hour. (Your classmates? Don't worry about them. "When they love you, and they will...") The super-ultra-awesome rousing chorus of Japandroids' original is now laid down over a bed of acoustic strumming with Sendrowitz' slight drawl smoothing out the strains. It's tender, and comforting, and a soft blow to the system: summer won't last forever, let you forget. Listen after the jump.

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Divine Fits Are a Group That's Legitimately Super

Posted By on Fri, Aug 17, 2012 at 2:15 PM

We should probably have retired the word "supergroup" well before the Zwan/Audioslave era made a mockery of it. It's now devolved to the point that any band featuring musicians we've already heard of counts as one, whether the result is a truly good band (Wild Flag spring to mind), a gross disgrace (Them Crooked Vultures still make us kind of mad), or a frustrating mess jammed up with unkempt ideas and no real guiding vision (we were really excited about Swan Lake once upon a time, sigh). Looking at the "supergroup" Wikipedia entry, which is actually a pretty fun diversion if you are already mentally weekending at work right now, we learn of such marvelously non-essential blips as 1995's Neurotic Outsiders featuring Steve Jones of the Sex Pistols and Duff McKagan of Guns N' Roses (and also The Fartz with a z). More recently, did you know that Michael Cera was the touring bassist for the Man Man/Unicorns/Modest Mouse/Arrested Development "supergroup" Mister Heavenly? Maybe we should call them "combo-groups," or "fusion-groups," or some other, less completely terrible term that doesn't already contain a superlative? How about just "new rock band"?

Divine Fits are a new rock band that happen to feature some people you've heard of. Primarily Britt Daniel from Spoon and Dan Boeckner from Wolf Parade and Handsome Furs (and also New Bomb Turks' Sam Brown, who get a slightly smaller font, through no fault of his own). Their debut record, A Thing Called Divine Fits, is out in a couple of weeks on Merge Records, and is streaming for now in full at NPR. It's so good, you guys!

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Your Weekend at the Movies: Summer's Last Gasp

Posted By on Fri, Aug 17, 2012 at 12:28 PM

Cosmopolis: In David Cronenberg's first solo screenplay since eXistenZ, and his first movie without Viggo Mortensen in almost a decade, he adapts a 2003 Don DeLillo novel with what sounds like scrupulous faithfulness. Though at a Thursday night screening and Q&A and the Museum of the Moving Image, he spoke eloquently about needing to "betray" an adapted book in order to honor it, he also mentioned that most of the screenplay's dialogue is taken verbatim from the book (indeed, he described the process of writing the script as almost accidental; a practical experiment in re-arranging DeLillo's story and words that turned out to be a workable script), and while I haven't read Cosmopolis, the movie certainly sounds like it's pledging its faithfulness to someone. Characters speak in elevated, sometimes aloof, sometimes theatrical, often sideways-witty dialogue, mostly in the same even tone. It can be a great pleasure to listen to; it can also be wearying, and I'm not sure if the talk, as a whole, is quite as accessible or realistic as the writer-director thinks; Cronenberg described it as operating with a mix of stylization and realism similar to Mamet or Pinter, but DeLillo's prose feels more at odds with the rhythms of actual human speech than either of the others. The actors, strong as they all are, sometimes seem to shudder, if only slightly, under the wordiness.

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