Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Larryville Gets a Craft Beer Expo / Brit Pick of the Week: Chapter 24 at Replay / The Urbanologist Reflects on Larryville

Most local scenesters enjoy getting drunk quickly and cheaply. But those with more sophisticated beer palettes will be checking out the Kansas Craft Brewers Expo, which is going down right here in Larryville on Saturday afternoon at Abe and Jake's. Visit the official site here .

The event is already sold out, but hopefully you've already ponied up 30 bucks to sample the wares from Kansas brewers such as LB Brewing from Hays and the High Noon Saloon from Leavenworth.

Chip: "I'm just going to stick with Free State because I know I like it."


Larryville's resident British scholar King Tosser is already hyped about London-based Chapter 24's gig at the Replay on Friday.

And look what the website A New Band a Day says of their song "Love" (you can also stream the song at the site ):

"As the song finishes, you’ll be bewildered by the journey you’ve just taken. Rockabilly, art-rock, jangle-pop, twee-tinkling, noisecore, neo-world music, Donk (OK, not Donk): it’s all there in one guise or another."

Richard was sold at "twee-tinkling," and Chip is really into Donk (and hates being teased like that).

We also like their tour poster, which features a cute dog, some pizza, and various severed body parts.


We spent an hour drinking Sidecars with public-art scholar/speaker The Urbanologist at 715 last week, and now he's chronicled his adventures in a very special "Rock Chalk Edition" of his "37 hours" series of posts. Spoiler alert: he had a fucking blast in Larryville! Read about the full 37 hours right here .

An excerpt:

"Prepare thyself for some fine meat products and wonderful spirits at 715 Mass, conveniently located a smoked trout crostini throw away from The Eldridge Hotel... Other worthy libations here include a maple old fashioned and a divine Oh Lazio (campari, Old Overholt rye, and rosemary)."

We'll be very disappointed if 715 doesn't sponsor an actual "smoked trout crostini" throwing competition very soon.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

The LC Interviews Continue With Danny Joe Gibson (Topics Include: Art, Gum Art, Chicken Art, Hot Tub Art, and the Apocalypse)

Readers, we get bored with our own voices around here, so we're continuing to open things up a bit with a few interviews that we hope are half-serious/half-silly. If you're interested, get in touch.

This week's chat is with KC artist Danny Joe Gibson, whose recent exhibition of concert fliers won the "best scene-uniting retrospective" award in the Pitch and wowed crowds at 1819 Central for three months running. His newest show at 1819 opens this Friday. It's called "Mouth Breathing at the Wick to the Apocalypse," and we predict it's as odd as it sounds!

Thanks to DJG for chatting with us about art, chicken art, hot tub art, and how awesome it would be if Michael Shannon exploded a Transformer with his mind!

Chip: I've been examining some of your pieces from this weekend's opening over at the gallery on @Saint_Upid's site and, quite frankly, I don't "get" some of it. Can you explain that Fox Food 2/ bunny piece to me?

DJG: I've been saving up each week's grocery store ad papers. I like to cut out the meat and various food chunks and make animals. I've got a fox and a rabbit. The fox is titled "Fox Food No. 1" and the rabbit is "Fox Food No. 2." So, eventually the rabbit gets eaten by the fox. Get it?

Chip: Not really. But I dig that bunny.

Richard: Can you give us a general sense of your style and techniques as an artist? And who are your influences? And could you please incorporate one of those "my work is like _________ meets ___________" comparisons that critics love so much?

DJG: My style typically consists of whatever mood/feeling I'm in or whatever sorts of things I've got to work with around me. I guess there are some consistencies as I keep coming back to found objects, collage, scribbles and junk.

Range of like-minded artistic kin stretch from my grandma to folk art to Henryk Tomaszewski to Seymour Chwast to Ray Johnson to Basquiat to Saul Steinberg and even Pee-wee Herman, Dr. Demento and Jim Henson. Daily influences include a mixture of intuition, conversation, observation, humor, stains on teeth, animals, anxiety, faith, layered language, worlds interacting with worlds, things that look better weathered, markings on pavement and beyond blah-blah. I watch a lot of movies too.

It's hard answering the "comparisons" question as I'm not always on the outside looking in. What do you think? I've had some people compare the found object work to Robert Rauschenberg. That's a pretty tall order though. I never really think about that stuff.

Steve Brisendine of Art KC 365 kindly put me at, "He isn’t just in touch with his inner child; the two of them must hang out on a regular basis, playing with scissors, magazines and construction paper…Some of his creations…are meticulously assembled. Others look as though they were fueled by half a box of frosted cereal, washed down with a two-liter bottle of something sugary and caffeinated."

Can I just say, "My work is like the Garbage Pail Kids meets Ren & Stimpy."?

Richard: Tell us more about "Mouth Breathing at the Wick to the Apocalypse." What is this show about and is it going to convince us (or convince us even further) that the world is ending in 2012?

DJG: I was actually quite anxious titling it this, but I kept coming back to it/it kept coming back to me. And it extends further than just the 2012 stuff. There's a lot to chew on and this title just works for the times and within my own body of work. It's definitely a conversation stimulator. The following is what I wrote for Chad Thomas Johnston's web site (@Saint_Upid). Actually, this one was slightly revised for my own blog:

Every living thing has a date of expiration. When that date comes, I believe, is in much bigger hands…as well as with a personal healthy dose of daily walk and decision. And Lord knows we’re all trying to put the wicks out to something we have to face, large or small, Earth or individual. We love to control, alter, even bring about more things in the process. Let’s all truly breathe and make space instead of picking up the pace and filling up out pants. Put the hand to the mouth…you’re still breathing. All of this also goes towards those who stand around waiting for things to happen on an individual level. I don’t know, life is about balance. I struggle every day.

People are so focused on 2012 predictions and doom ‘n’ gloom when life is still in the now. For those wishing to sidestep the recent holiday cheer, there was even an “Armageddon Week” during Christmas on the History Channel. Yeah, fascinating, but let’s not over do it. If this is our last official year, then let’s just take one long holiday! Who knows? I don’t think any man truly does. But, when that day comes we will be there with the cameras rolling, breathing heavily, awaiting to capture and recapture a thing that we’ll either be too dead to see or won’t have the grid or battery power to reconnect with. Let’s find the art and beauty in the rubble that is the now.

This all sort of fits into my exhibition title “Mouth Breathing at the Wick to the Apocalypse.” It also just speaks for the body of work I’ve been creating the past year, perhaps many years. I don’t aim to alarm or hoover heavily. If anything, the spirit in the art is quite jovial and optimistic. Per usual, I want people to have a soak and smile. Some of the ideas initialized in a 2002 sketchbook I did as a janitor as well as writings over the past half decade. In the end, it just has a nice ring to it, don’t you think?

Richard: What other projects do you have in store for what may well be the last year of humanity's existence as we know it?

DJG: I made a life-size bison (on paper) outlined in grocery store meat ads and splattered with coffee. He'll be at the exhibition hiding in a corner. I've also got a snake on a board made out of chewed up Dubble Bubble. My jaw is kind of sore this week. I think that's it for the gum art. There will be a few others in the show too.

Other projects in the coming months? Well, I'd like to knock out another music video this year. I'm trying my hand and patience at stop motion animation. Emphasis on "trying."

I'd like to have a 2nd exhibition at 1819 Central this year. I'm thinking of doing a photography show, but I'll just see what art I make between now and the fall. Ultimately, I'd like to make some money on this art thing. We'll see.

I'll also have a piece in the forthcoming Middle of the Map Fest art show in April. I still need to make that one.

Chip: KC has a strange new event called Hot Tub dialogues, in which the audience pays to watch artists sit around talking about art in a hot tub. Personally, I find it all very sexy, which is something I almost never say about art events. Would you be willing to don your bathing suit to participate in such shenanigans?

DJG: This is new news to me! And weird at that! Especially the audience pay part. I don't think I'd be up for such an event unless said hot tub was a time machine. I'm also a bit of a nevernude and still barely sticking my toes in the Kansas City art pool as it is!

Richard: Larryville has a very controversial public art event that is slated to begin soon, Amber Hansen's "The Story of Chickens: A Revolution," in which chickens will be exhibited for a month in spots around town, letting people get to know them before culminating in their death and subsequent cooking for a community event at the Percolator. What are your initial thoughts on this project?

DJG: Like the hot tub talk, this is weird and new local art news to me! I really am out of the loop/pool. Growing up on a farm in rural Missouri, I knew many of my animals before they were butchered. I guess, like anything, it's a matter of public opinion. If you're not comfortable with it, then don't attend/support? Is this commentary on the whole local/get to know your food and where it comes from thing? Very interesting. I don't quite understand the need to make it into a public art event. Seems like something destined to stir the poultry pot, so to speak! I guess I need to know more about this.

Richard: I know you are a huge movie buff, since I talk movies with you on Twitter quite often. What's the best off-the-beaten-path film that you've watched recently that our readers should see and then talk pompously about at the Pig while pretending like they discovered it themselves?

DJG: Uh, Transformers? I watched that and Take Shelter recently. Michael Shannon could destroy a Transformer by staring at it...sure to be an Academy Award favorite.

Chip: "I'd totally see that."

Richard: Any future plans to make a Larryville visit and drink a PBR with us?

DJG: I don't have the street cred to call it Larryville just yet, but maybe I will after I come hang with you guys? Lawrence used to be a short hop, skip and a jump traveling to concerts in my youth. It helped that I rarely drove then. At 33, Lawrence seems so far away from Kansas City. One of these days though...

Richard: Do you have a favorite show from your Lawrence concert-going days?

DJG: My most memorable concert moment in Lawrence would have to be meeting Elliott Smith in the Granada back alley after his show. We shook hands and both said, "Thanks." at the same time. Also in the alley were The Flaming Lips who happened to be in town, and previously on stage performing "Don't Fear the Reaper" with Elliott. What a way to end it. I was sad the day Elliott smith passed away and still am.

Richard: "I was at the same show! But, sadly, not in the alley afterward."

You can visit the Facebook event page for the "Mouthbreathing" opening here .

and the 1819 Central site here

and Danny's website here

and Danny's work is being set up even as we speak. Take a peek (click to enlarge):

Friday, February 24, 2012

The Final Border War

There are other things going on this weekend, such as Final Friday and good music (please read our interview with Katlyn Conroy here ), but let's face it: the event of the weekend is the final Border War between KU and Missouri before those cowards secede from the conference. Let's check in with the talkbackers at KU Sports and see how the fans feel about tomorrow's climactic showdown.

drgnslayr says:

"We are all aware of the spirits in the Phog, who hold the best seats in the rafters of AFH. Not all of the spirits are former basketball greats. So when you attend the game tomorrow listen astutely for the spirit voices before the fan cheers take over:

General Thomas Ewing, Jr.: "I've been told the last of Quantrill's Raiders have been pinned into the field house near Mount Oread... around 15 men and their leader who is called 'Hate.' I give you the authority to go take care of this."

Charles "Doc" Jennison: "I've got a match... consider it done!"

KU 84

MU 52"

Missouricat, crashing the party, says:

"Should be a good game. Beings Missouri beat KU in football and one basketball game this year it just could be KU's turn to win one...Looks like this will be the last time KU trys to win one from MU, unless Self changes his ways as we are headed to the SEC which will be a great move for MU. More money and better talent there then in the big 12."

And Chalked says to Missouricat:

"Judging from your thoughtful insight and precise writing style..."Beings Missouri beat KU..." I'd guess you were valedictorian at Missouri. Congrats on your 6th grade education Jethro."

As for us, we're about to start drinking now. Rock Chalk! (hold the extra "woo")

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Soviet Hipsters on Film and Portland Hipsters in Literature

Do you ever find yourself wondering what Russian hipsters were like in the 50s? Luckily, there's a new film from Valeriy Todorovskiy that illuminates the world of Moscow hipsters ("stilyagi") who "listen to jazz, style their hair in pompadours or bouffants, wear bright clothing, and (here’s the rub) risk arrest for “kowtowing to Western ideology.” (AV-Club). Also, it's apparently full of dance numbers that "are alive with the joy of acting out, extending into scenes in which characters leap subway turnstiles or have enthusiastic sex in the communal apartment room they’re sharing with family members who try to ignore them." (AV Club).

We all know that contemporary American hipsters don't have "enthusiastic sex," but maybe we can learn some things from the Soviet past.

Watch the Youtube trailer here (lack of English subtitles makes it even more awesome):

The poster is also pretty terrific:


Hipster culture certainly makes for amusing blog fodder and sketch comedy, but can such a shallow world make for substantive literary fiction? James Bernard Frost's A Very Minor Prophet "is the story of how Barth Flynn, a barista swimming upstream against purposelessness in Portland, Oregon, becomes the faithful scribe of Joseph Patrick Booker. Booker is a dwarf preacher who serves Voodoo donuts, Stumptown coffee, and, while his congregation throws PBR cans at him, rants about George W. Bush during the height of the 2004 presidential election." (Hawthorne Books).

A PBR-swilling congregation? We're sold, and we hear that Larryville's intrepid band of local readers known as the PBR Book Club are looking forward to reading this as their April selection, complete with a Skype chat with the author (Chip: "If I don't enjoy the book, do I have to pretend I did?"). Go here to order your advance copy from Hawthorne Books at a 30% discount and check in with the PBR Book Club blog for further details as this important literary event progresses.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

The LC's New Interview Series Begins with Katlyn Conroy

Readers, we're happy to offer up a new interview series here at the LC in which we ask movers and shakers in the art and music scene a few questions about what they do. Lest you think we're getting too professional, we'll do our best to make at least a few of those questions snarky and some of them about boners, but mainly this is just a forum for people that we dig to trumpet their work to whoever might be listening (mainly people who reach our blog by Googling things such as "team sex naked" and "taylor swift crotch"). If you have something going on and want to talk about it, leave a response or send us a tweet @larryvillelife and we'll determine if you're hip enough!

First in the series is Katlyn Conroy. You likely know her from Cowboy Indian Bear (Chip: "I still don't know if she's the Indian or the Bear.") but she's also got a new project called La Guerre. You can catch La Guerre opening up at the Bottleneck on Friday for Jon Harrison and the Harrisonics and the Dead Girls, and a video for the song "My Idea" is slated to appear soon. Thanks to Katlyn for being our inaugural interview subject!

Chip: First off, is it true that La Guerre is French for "the boner?

Katlyn: Actually, Chip, you're thinking of the ancient French-Canadian translation. In modern French, La Guerre means "The War."

Richard: Tell us about the La Guerre sound. Who are your influences? And can you incorporate one of those "it sounds like ________ meets _________" comparisons that music criticism so often relies on?

Katlyn: La Guerre began as an attempt to make my little bittersweet, minimalist love songs as instrumentally dynamic as possible. Think Emily Haines meets Lykke Li. As far as influences go, I love the vocal stylings of St. Vincent, as well as the strength behind her sound. I'm typically more akin to male artists, so I'm always very moved by strong female artists that carry more depth than i think they would.

Richard: What's coming up for La Guerre in 2012 as far as shows and recording?

Katlyn: We just had our first show in December, so we're taking it slowly when booking for 2012. The main focus is getting the album finished and getting songs released! We are trying to play once every few months in Lawrence and KC til that goal is met. We're very excited to play the Middle of the Map Fest in April!

Richard: Why should scenesters shell out their not-so-hard-earned dollars for La Guerre on Friday instead of the buzzy Zola Jesus show down at the Granada?

Katlyn: Zola Jesus is awesome. But how sweet would it have been to see her when she was first starting out? Come see La Guerre and witness the birth of some great music. (For the record, there won't literally be a live birth involved..)

Chip: What local bands or singers get you hot and bothered these days?

Katlyn: No one gets me hot and bothered like Jordan Geiger, but that's why he's involved in this project! He's been helping with the record and will be playing on it as well!

And Katlyn sent us this cool pic (which freaks us out a little):

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Mardi Gras in Larryville / This Week in Local Art: The Urbanologist, Controversial Chicken Art, and Final Fridays

Laissez les bons temps rouler, readers! It's Fat Tuesday and, if you're anything like us, you've been downtown all afternoon following around Mike West and his costumed Mardi Gras revelers. Here's a shot from soon after the parade's arrival at Free State. As we say in Kansas, it ain't Mardi Gras till Katie Euliss smacks you on the ass with a tambourine.


But in other news, it's an artsy week in Larryville. Public art scholar The Urbanologist spent the weekend rambling around our fair town, taking pics (such as Wayne Propst's babydollhead in the tree outside the Pig), and offering his thoughts on public art both local and national last night at the Library. In attendance: Amber Hansen, who is poised to take the Larryville art world by storm next month with her already controversial project called The Story of Chickens: A Revolution in which we'll all get to know some chickens at various locations for a month and then kill and eat them at the Percolator. We're fucking hyped! (Amber, if you read this, we'd love to shoot you a few email interview questions).

And of course another Final Friday is on the horizon on the 24th. Two likely hotspots: (1) Wonder Fair (their exhibition "Chop Chop" will feature former Wonder Fair-ian Lie Piechocki’s "imaginary interiors...filled with beach balls, kitsch dolphin posters, and stray fluorescent marks") and (2) The Pig (their exhibition is called "Trash Lion," which we hope is a bunch of lions made out of garbage).

Visit the Final Fridays Wordpress site for a full slate of events.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Sunday Scenester Pick: Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks at Granada / Local Missed Connection of the Week

If you're a certain kind of Pavement-worshipping scenester (and we trust that you are), you certainly don't need us to remind you that Stephen Malkmus is in town tonight. Let's check in with Pitchfork to see if his newest album, last year's Mirror Traffic, is suitably hip.

It is: 7.7.

Pitchfork writes , "Whether he likes it or not, Malkmus is the indie-rock version of a Dylan or Simon or U2, artists who will forever be blurbed as making "their best album since ____." Competing with his younger self is definitely not a priority for Malkmus, who went through Pavement's reunion tour like he was punching a clock. Any resemblance to earlier days is likely unintentional, but for the aging hipsters of the world, even an accidental flashback is a good contact high."

Richard: "This is totally his best album since Pig Lib."

Chip: "Malkmus is no Bono."

But what if you prefer your Sunday evening music with a little less irony and a lot more use of "planetary gongs?" Then head to the Eastside for a "sound bath!" Delaware Commons is hosting "Neptune's Homecoming" at 7:30:

"Paul Rudy and Heidi Svoboda present Neptune's Homecoming, a sound bath of Earth and Sky. Heidi plays the planetary gongs. The gongs are gorgeous in visual, sound and energy moving capabilities. Paul uses drums, toys, voice, percussion and lots of ethnic rattles, etc. They also play with the sounds of nature that Paul has composed to go with the 8 elements of the I-Ching: Thunder, Wind, Fire, Earth, Lake, Heaven, Water and Mountain." (L.com).


It's been awhile since we spotted a good local Missed Connection on Craigslist, but this m4w post appeals to our romantic sides:

"We were both in the dumpster looking for a discarded treasure and found each other. You are tall and pretty but I was distracted by the tall and pretty part and I forgot to get your number. Did you find any good music while diving? I hope so - cause I was thinking it would be nice to drink a beer or two and dance to some slow tunes with just you."

We're guessing that more than a few Larryville relationships have begun in dumpsters, and we wish this couple the best.

Friday, February 17, 2012

This Week in Local News: Corrupt Cops, Compton's Hotel, and Top City Protests

Let's dispense with the usual scenester guide today (just go to the Replay) and see what's in the news in Larryville (and its environs).

Just when you thought the KU ticket scandal had gone away, along comes the news that two of Larryville's finest were fixing tickets in exchange for basketball tickets. Best LJ-World talkback line so far: "Rock Chalk Jay Cop!"

Last night the Historic Resources Commission denied the newest set of revised plans for Compton's 9th and NH hotel. Compton has vowed to seek an appeal from the City Fathers within the next few weeks, who will almost certainly grant him free reign to do whatever he likes, as per usual. Best talkback line so far is from GUMnNUTS: "Will the sixth floor restaurant be Mexican or pizza?"

And in Topeka, citizens rallied this week against policies of Gov. Brownback and Sec. of State Kris Kobach. The best LJ-World talkback rant so far is from tuschkahouma, which contains a Ricky Bobby joke, a treatise on Native American languages, and a reference to Eggo waffles:

"The ljworld fibbed on the crowd size. Go figure. It was announced as 800 people by the announcer there... It's hilarious that a backwards state like Alabama (Halbamo in my Choctaw language) is already looking for exemptions to that nonsense law because ricky bobby and carrie sue won't put down their anti illegals sign and go do field work and the people enforcing Juan Crow laws like the Jim Crow laws of the past are being embarrassed when foreign car companies Mercedes Benz and Hyundai have their executives pulled over for routine
traffic offenses and didn't have papers with them a couple of months ago. My tribe is above Mobile, Alabama. English and Spanish are immigrant languages. Tuscaloosa means Black Warrior in our language. Wewoka, Wetumpka, and Tuskegee are Creek words and towns in Alabama. I hope these gop politicians starting eating eggo waffles for all the egg on their faces."

Yes, there were V For Vendetta masks on the scene (photo via Topeka Capital Journal ):

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Nerd Nite Review: Silent Film Magic, Mardi Gras Phalluses, and Adam Lott's Cat

First off, kudos to Pachamama's and the Nerd Nite gang for providing a little extra seating to accommodate all the nerds who wanted to witness last night's proceedings (and for offering us a prime spot at the "press table": oh, we felt very special indeed!).

Now let's review the three presentations.

With The Artist and Hugo (two loving tributes to the silent-film era) leading the Oscar-nominations this year, Justin Runge's survey of silent films was an especially timely presentation. Runge served up a nice sampling of clips ranging from two kitties boxing each other (which remains the equal of anything you've watched on Youtube this morning) to "Fred Ott's Sneeze" (seven seconds of pure sneezing action: see it here!) to Edison's "May-Irwin" Kiss (Chip: "Still surprisingly erotic": see it here ).

And note that two major opportunities to witness silent films are coming soon: Murnau's Sunrise with live orchestral accompaniment at the Arts Center on Thurs. Feb. 23 (click pic in sidebar) and the Topeka Silent Film Festival beginning the next day. "Talkies" are for suckers!

Next up was Alison Heryer's look at Mardi Gras costumes and traditions (also timely, with Fat Tuesday just around the corner). Once we got over our disappointment at the complete lack of titties in this presentation, it was a quite enlightening look at such ideas as the lingering "anthropomorphic tradition" of Mardi Gras attire as well as groups such as the Mardi Gras "Indians" that fascinate us so much on HBO's Treme. Heryer also regaled us with useful tips on dressing for Mardi Gras, such as "Sexy is different from skanky." Chip disagreed. This lecture also contained the most uses of the word "phallus" of any Nerd Nite presentation so far.

By then, we were drunk, and so (we suspect) was final presenter Adam Lott, who nonetheless maintained perfect delivery and scored big laughs with what Nick Ray later termed Nerd Nite's "first ever analog presentation" about the various incarnations of the musical Cabaret, which also contained hand-drawn pictures of Lott's kitty, Lott singing snippets of "Pineapple Song" ("a love song that's also a fart song"), and important trivia ("Wolverine was in Oklahoma, ya'll!").

See you at the next Nerd Nite in March, which is rumored to include a special (nerdy) sports-themed presentation to coincide with March Madness. We're hoping for local Larryville baseball-stats legend Bill James or perhaps Sherron C.llins talking about his elevator/boner fetish.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

New Scenester Picks: Nerds, Banjos, and Literary Canon Fodder

We love Nerd Nite and we love writing about Nerd Nite, but we don't love that it's become sort of difficult to get a seat at Nerd Nite. So we might or might not be allowed to witness tonight's sure-to-be-stimulating discussions of movies, Mardi Gras, and cabaret. Our favorite presentation title of the evening is this one:

"A Century of Film or: We’ve Spent One Hundred Years Collectively
Sitting in Front of Screens Getting Stupider (And Smarter, and
Stranger, and Inspired)"

Chip: "I hope there are a series of clips of Adam Sandler getting hit in the balls by various objects."

If you don't score a seat at Nerd Nite, drown your sorrows at the Replay, which is probably the best bet to hear some banjo-plucking as Caroline Smith and the Goodnight Sleeps take the stage (they are joined by The ACB's and Magentlemen). Daytrotter writes of Caroline Smith: "She sings on "Gracie," about what seems to be an omniscient, speaking dog." Sold!

And does the Larryville alternative-theater scene seem more active than usual of late? We think so. This weekend the Lawrence Arts Center plays host to Card Table Theater's Literary Cannon Fodder, which appears to be a comedic survey of the full Western canon (sort of a "Reduced Shakespeare Company" approach, perhaps?). We're hoping there are a lot of good dick jokes when they tackle Moby Dick. See the Youtube trailer here and watch a man lick a picture of a deer. And check out the shows this Friday and Saturday at 8:00

Monday, February 13, 2012

Valentine's Day Picks: The Pharmacy, Dry Bonnet, and Foxy By Proxy Valentine's Day Cabaret

Readers, tomorrow is Valentine's Day, and Chip is desperately hoping that the bottle of Boulevard Chocolate Ale he squirreled away a few weeks back is going to earn him a blowjob.

But what else is going on in Larryville for the scenester crowd who scoff at roses and romantic dinners?

Well, there's the Replay, of course, where you can buy your significant other(s) a PBR and rock out with Larryville's Dry Bonnet. They're opening up for The Pharmacy, who have an acclaimed new 7" called Dig Your Grave.

Daytrotter says that The Pharmacy "bring out the joy that there is inherent in an echo that's called out over the wound or winding down environment of houses and people - a note that pierces across the shadows, over the cooling and soon to dew objects left outdoors and bounds through all of the graveyards that suddenly feel the most alive, when the lights have been taken down, shot from the sky."

We say: "What the FUCK, Daytrotter. Enter that in a faux Faulkner contest and review the record, why don't you?

And earlier in the evening, at the Carnegie Building (Chip: "Where??"), the Foxy by Proxy gals will be bringing you a Valentine's Day Cabaret, with saucy dancers, the antics of Juggling Dingus, and songs from some of the Tinhorn Molly gang. There's a Facebook event page over here with ticket information that seems unecessarily complicated but, on the plus side, allows you to interact with the Foxy ladies via Facebook!

But what if you want to spend V-Day getting stoned and listening to reggae versions of Beatles songs? Then head to the Bottleneck to catch Yellow Dubmarine. We won't tell anybody.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Tom Petty Tribute Recap / Brooklyn Buzz Band of the Week: Hospitality

Last night's multi-band Tom Petty tribute at the Bottleneck elicited mixed-reactions from the crowd. Our friend King Tosser (author of the upcoming book Brit Wits: A History of British Rock Humor: pre-order your copy here ) was enraged that the technical prowess of Magentlemen was being squandered on a tribute set. Chip, of course, was pleased with the Magentlemen's absolutely fidelity to the recorded versions ("It sounds just like my cassette tapes."). And Richard was annoyed that none of the bands playing "Breakdown" attempted to recreate Petty's live version in which he sings only the first line and lets the audience do the rest. We were totally prepared to sing.

You can see Magentlemen doing their own thing at the Replay this Wednesday, along with Caroline Smith and the Good Night Sleeps. Here they are last night rocking "Stop Draggin' My Heart Around":


It's starting to seem doubtful that any band will ever fill the twee hole in our heart left by the Transmittens, but this four-star Rolling Stone review of Hospitality's new record gave us hope:

"Synth doodles and squeaky-cutesy vocals abound on this Brooklyn trio's aggressively adorable debut.But Hospitality have more to offer than mere sweetness: Check how the wistful ballad "Eighth Avenue" left-turns into a spastic guitar outburst, like Tom Verlaine crashing a Belle and Sebastian session."

So we turned to Pitchfork to see if they are indeed worthy of our attention. Verdict: a 7.4. Some excerpts:

"an appropriately languid tribute to mapless post-graduate ennui..."

"The not-new songs here don't sound reworked so much as run through some kind of cartoony scrubbing contraption, Wonka Wash-style, emerging stunningly clean out the other end, the curvy surfaces all gleaming in the sun."

"...the darling strangeness of her voice... sounds more like she's channeling Hayley Mills duetting with Hayley Mills."

Read the Pitchfork review and listen to "Betty Wang" here .

Check out this cute photo from Brooklyn Vegan:

Friday, February 10, 2012

Weekend Scenester Guide: Art Auctions, Swampfests, and Femme Assassin Guys

People often forget that the local art world depends a great deal on art actually being purchased, so make sure to attend the Fresh Produce Art Collective's Art Auction at the Lost Art Space on Saturday. Doors are at 6:30 for a silent auction and refreshments and the live auction starts at 7:30. The press material says that "proper dress attire is strongly encouraged," but we're guessing they'll let you in if you're a big enough spender. The auction features works from Paul Flinders, Jeromy Morris, Wayne Propst, Jason Barr, Jeremy Rockwell, Erok Johanssen, Yuri Zupancic, Jesse Gray, Matt Ridgway and more. 25 of the pieces will begin with a $10 starting bid, so it's possible you can take home your very own Propst babydollhead for a small price!

If you're a local progressive, you'll probably want to spend tonight shouting loudly about the wetlands at the Jackpot's second annual Swampfest benefit to save the wetlands. The event starts early (7:00) with free Local Burger food and live jazz followed by later evening entertainment featuring the doo-wop madness of Dean Monkey, the face-painted drumming warriors of Cloud Dog, a band called Instant Tradition, and (of course) Tyler Gregory, who is also playing the 2nd installment of the Art Center's 940 Live concert series tonight with Truckstop Honeymoon. Does Gregory have magical neo-hobo powers that allow him to be in two places at once. Almost certainly, yes.

And we recommend you kick off your Friday evening at the Replay matinee for MAW's new-CD release show. Check out the cover art for Pit of Desire, and a framed copy of the original piece by Mike Hoffman will be auctioned off at the show.

If you prefer the theatrical scene to the art and music worlds, don't forget the Fire Your Muse series of staged readings on Saturday and Sunday at the Arts Center. We remain particularly intrigued by Jonah Qwerty is Femme Assassin Guy, "a full-length musical horror about the rise of gay serial killer Jonah Qwerty, who rose to infamy for uploading musicalized murders to YouTube." It's on Saturday at 9:30 and a kind anonymous blog reader sent us this creepy Youtube trailer (normally our anonymous readers only respond in order to call us a bunch of dickheads). The musical will apparently get a full production in May at the Bottleneck.

And don't forget the KJHK-sponsored William Elliott Whitmore show at the Granada (sidebar).

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Terror Pigeon Dance Revolt and Robocopter Recap / Upcoming Scenester Pick: William Elliott Whitmore at Granada on Friday

Despite all our talk about how much we love adorable bands, we have to be feeling pretty fucking twee indeed before we don an animal suit and bounce around soberly to some funky beats early on a Tuesday evening. So we slipped in toward the end of Terror Pigeon Dance Revolt's set at Wonder Fair last night, yet still with plenty of time to witness what might best be described as one part New Age seminar (at one point everyone shouted a mantra of "I like you" for several minutes) and one-part freewheeling dance party set to bouncy songs with angsty lyrics about how shit will get better, with interludes for group hugs, a dance showcase by audience members, and a coming-together under a giant parachute (also, inflatable snow men, shirtless dudes, and dudes in dresses a la Of Montreal). The very young (and no doubt VERY high) audience had a blast participating. As for us, we needed a beer (which was not on sale: come on, Wonder Fair!).

The place cleared out quite a bit prior to our reason for attending: a three-song set by our local Twitter-buddy Robocopter, whose shouty hip-hop delivery of weighty-themed songs about the hollow "mechanism" of American institutions makes for an amusing contrast to his multimedia display of cute animal videos.

@Oxfordist was on hand shooting photos and videos for I Heart Local Music, which you should go peruse and experience the madness from the safety of your own home, with no danger of group hugs. Here's a sample from @oxfordist's photo gallery :


But perhaps you're asking yourself, do scenesters these days ever get excited for things that aren't preposterous? Perhaps so, since William Eliott Whitmore and his banjo will be headlining a KJHK-sponsored show at the Granada on Friday. We remember the days when Whitmore and his gravelly voice shut up the drunken revelers at the Replay and the Jackpot. Will the younger set pay attention in a larger venue? Show up on Friday and found out. He's joined by ever-popular locals Drakkar Sauna, a cover band called Horse Weapons, and something out of Denver called Me For Radness, which will likely bring a dose of silliness to the evening.

Pitchfork gives a 7.5 to Whitmore's recent Field Songs, writing:

"Whitmore plays scrappy, acoustic folksongs on banjo (occasionally augmented by a bass drum), singing earnestly about things like hammers, steamboats, and dying. It's embarrassingly easy to picture him attacking logs with an old, rusted ax, or sitting by a campfire chewing on a stick of black licorice. There's a dignity to his work, which is unfussy and ambivalent to trends; sometimes that simplicity can feel admonishing. Whether he intends it to or not, something in his voice seems to say: "Stop Tweeting. It's stupid."

Expect to see a lot of young scenesters tweeting in front of him on Friday.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Wonder Fair Gets Weird With Terror Pigeon Dance Revolt and Robocopter

We think it's safe to that this week's weirdest music event will take place on Tuesday at Wonder Fair, when the Pizza Power gang rides again with a night of pizza and tunes from Terror Pigeon Dance Revolt, along with local favorite Robocopter. Pizza at 6; music at 7.

We were sold on Terror Pigeon Dance Revolt as soon as we learned they have an album titled I LOVE YOU! I LOVE YOU! I LOVE YOU AND I'M IN LOVE WITH YOU! HAVE AN AWESOME DAY! HAVE THE BEST DAY OF YOUR LIFE!

But perhaps you fickle scenesters need more than that? Well, how about the fact that they record on David Byrne's Luaka Bop label and have played "a string of much-hyped shows around Manhattan and Brooklyn" (NY-Times), most of which seem to involve more stuffed animals than a Flaming Lips concert.

Band member Tim Quackenbush says in the Times: "We just feed off the energy of the crowd. You never know who’s going to put on a costume and sing along, who’s going to start freestyling.”

Chip: "I'm certainly planning to freestyle tomorrow. What rhymes with 'boner,' besides 'loner' and 'stoner?'"

Go over to the FB event page and tell them you're coming.

And listen to some Terror Pigeon here

And like Robocopter on FB here

And look at this picture of a Terror Pigeon show (from Indie Rock Reviews) right here:

Friday, February 3, 2012

Weekend Scenester Picks: Galaxies at Replay and The Devil at the Jackpot / LJ World Rant of the Week

After a night of pure seething rage during the Mizzou game tomorrow, you'll likely need to calm down with something twee. Consider checking out Colorado's Galaxies, who have a song called "At the Zoo With You," which is just about as cute as it sounds ("Prolific musician Dillon Groeneman has a knack for melody--he can pluck a pretty progression from his thin Colorado air and slip it into the satchel of a song with the deftness of a professional orchard hand." --yvynyl). Listen here .

And across the way at the Jackpot tomorrow, The Devil will return (for the first time since her New Year's Eve show, as far as we know). The Devil is joined by Minden and Gun Show. Take a look:


We love a good rant in the LJ-World talkbacks and Alceste is one of our favorites. His following response to the Eastside's concerns over Compton's new downtown hotel has a little bit of everything we love in a good local rant, including (a) a lament for the Larryville of yesterday, (b) an attack on local progressives, and (c) the author referring to himself in 3rd person. Enjoy!

"Neighborhoods change and that's all there is to it. East Lawrence isn't really a singular neighborhood anyway: It has pockets of pleasant and quaint along with pockets of pits and despair.

The "new" Downtown is lost to the middle class.....the "lofts"; the apartments; "the trend" has all been about catering to the wealthy and that's just the way it is in Lawrence, anymore. It's too late, Boz: There is no turning back in Alceste's view. The Lawrence of yesteryear is gone....and has been for a long time. No more Duckwalls; No more A&P; No more Town Crier; No more John's Novelty; No more Deluxe Cafe; No More Union Cafe; and on and on and on. Better to have a hotel in conjunction with rich people apartments than yet another bar or overpriced trinket store.

To heck with Soden, president of the East Lawrence Neighborhood Association and to heck with the East Lawrence Neighborhood Association. Downtown belongs to everybody and not just select "interest groups". I venture to add that the vast majority of Lawrence living people seldom go Downtown because of these "interest groups" (boutique shoppers; frilly diners; and lastly, gun and knife toting bar hoppers.) By adding a hotel which shall compete with the grossly overpriced and under customer oriented Eldgridge perhaps an entirely new quality of people will be in the Downtown area.

Old Alceste would very much enjoy residing in an apartment in the Downtown but accepted long ago ain't nobody going to cater to Alceste's income or rather lack thereof. Try all you like, but you'll never be able to stop the gentrification of Lawrence. It's too late....it's already here and there's no turning back. Live with it. *shrug*".

Read the article about the hotel and the full talkback at the LJWorld site

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Hipster Film Pick of the Week: I Am Not a Hipster / Important Upcoming Local Theater Events

Destin Daniel Cretton’s I Am Not a Hipster won raves at Sundance for its portrayal of a San Diego singer-songwriter struggling to deal with a recent break-up with the help of his "fixed-gear-bike-racing friend Clarke" (Wired). The film's star also sings the songs on the soundtrack, which the director claims is sort of a prequel to the film. It all sounds very hip to us, but maybe it isn't? Learn more at the official site


We have a feeling that a lot of people (or at least us) will opt for KU/Missouri basketball over theater on Saturday night, but Lawrence Arts Center (unafraid) will offer up "On Screen Offspring" this weekend, "an evening of multimedia one act plays by area filmmakers." Luckily, there's a Friday show as well. The press material promises that "audiences will enjoy talking a journey through familiar Lawrence locations, such as the Farmer's Market, Lawrence Municipal Airport and Clinton Lake." No word on whether your favorite bars will make appearances.

We're more excited, however, about the following week's presentation of "JONAH QWERTY IS FEMME ASSASSIN GUY" by Micheal Timothy Dieker, "A full-length musical horror about the rise of gay serial killer Jonah Qwerty, who rose to infamy for uploading musicalized murders to YouTube." (Sat. Feb. 11 at 9:30) and "PIES FROM THE PORN KITCHEN," by Natalie Liccardello: "Two cleaning ladies walk into an upscale Manhattan apartment and encounter an unlikely mix of baked goods, pornography, and a naked dude named Zeke. Shenanigans ensue, hearts are won, and a star is born." (Sunday, Feb. 12, at 7:30).

Surely we are making shit up at this point, you might well assume. But you'd be wrong: go to the LAC site for full details.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

New Local Website of the Week / Local Flash Mob of the Week

Readers, the Larryville brand is back in a major way. In addition to our own PBR and boner jokes here at the LC, there's our Twitter-buddies over at @LarryfuckingKS (if you're not getting retweeted by them on a regular basis, you're probably not hip) and now the new kids on the block over at www.larryvilleku.com , a mysterious website that "went live" last night and claims to help one locate important bargains, events, photos, and tweets from nearby locations. So far, Chip's searches in the "dorm photos" sections have yielded no titties, and the most interesting tweet we've discovered (originating in the "student ghetto") is this one: "Enjoying an OK breakfast at 1145 Louisiana St. #wishihadeggs #wafflebaby #larryvilleku."

But presumably the site is useful for reasons we've yet to discover, so let us know about your experiences there.

In the meantime, we'll stick with the KU Nights site for our weekly dose of local debauchery. Did you know that THIS happened at the Granada on Sunday:


And apparently the term "flash mob" is being used rather loosely these days, judging from this (announced in advance!) Elvis event that occurred during a KU class yesterday.