Had you been skeptical about the “UnderCover Presents: Nick Drake’s Pink Moon” event Sunday night at the Rickshaw Stop you wouldn't have been alone. It had the potential to be disastrous. Coordinating the sound alone must have posed a considerable challenge. How do you get 11 eclectic local bands — 50 performers each with specific sound needs — to play one song from one album without frazzling intervals between each performance and each set up? And then of course there's the album to consider, Nick Drake’s Pink Moon. How can the bands perform the covers without butchering the album? Read more »
After an incredibly steep hike up 24th Street, Sam Love and I arrived on the doorstep of Culture Kitchen, a traveling cooking class that hires immigrant women to teach their home recipes and share spicy and savory secrets of their culture.
Using the kitchen that a friend offered up, our chef for the night was Maria, a native of Peru, who gave us a lesson in ceviche -- that beloved raw fish dish one “cooks” in lime juice -- a classic chicken dish called aji de gallina, and sweet filled alfajores. Read more »
Stirring together a mix of contemporary theater and actual traditional ceremonies, New Fire (which opened last night and runs through Jan. 29) is a play that gives its audience insight into the beautiful world of Indigenous American culture. Read more »
I’ve heard complaints that the Occupy movement doesn’t have a clear message, but Saturday night you could read it from a passing car. At an intersection off of Broadway, where a large crowd had gathered, a few people held up a giant banner on the corner that read “FUCK THE POLICE.” And as we passed groups of officers in riot gear and searched for parking among the cop cars on nearly every block, it was also obvious that a confrontation was brewing. Read more »
Though Starfucker hails from Portland, Ore., it’s easy to see why the band feels at home here. If a bunch of hip, pasty dudes performing in drag doesn’t scream “San Francisco,” I don’t know what does. Its name is edgy enough to elicit parental concern (the less offensive STRFKR is often used instead), but Starfucker’s trendy synth-pop is catchy and sweet. Read more »
The nice thing about playing a major stage in your hometown is that you can count on support from old friends. On the other hand, it also means that those same people can shout out whatever they want during the mic breaks. “Man, they just had to bring out my childhood nickname,” a slightly blushing Mara Hruby said Wednesday night, responding to a slightly inaudible call from someone from way back in the back of the sold-out crowd at Yoshi’s Oakland. Read more »
Despite all the local and national attention Oakland's “Best Duo Ever” Main Attrakionz has been receiving lately, the Independent was less populated than I expected last Tuesday night. It was an appreciative bunch, however, with a handful of bloggers and collaborators joining fans to show the act love. Read more »
Sweet Can Productions puts on a gonzo circus show, but with a focus on quotidien, real-world concerns. For its upcoming “Yes Sweet Can” show, running for over two weeks at Dance Mission Theater, the performance is inspired by everyday chores -- and actually makes them seem like fun.
The nostalgia factor of a night spent at the Fillmore, watching Dinosaur Jr. play the entirety of its classic Bug album while the scents of weed and that cloying old familiar CK One (I shit you not) steeped into my clothes, is hard to ignore. Though I was too young to appreciate Bug in 1988, watching the slacker-rock trio indulge in sprawling guitar solos and dense, chugging bass lines undoubtedly evoked a longing for grunge and those impetuous '90s. Read more »
It’s been over a year since Dave Portner – the yelping member of Animal Collective better known as Avey Tare – released his crocodile-inspired solo debut Down There (Paw Tracks). Maybe Tare needed to spend some time away from the songs that dealt with divorce, death, and illness, as he only recently set out on tour in support of the album. He finished his brief solo tour on Sunday night at Oakland’s New Parish, and I couldn’t wait to finally check him out. Read more »