Fall Arts preview: movies, concerts, festivals, theater, dance, nightlife, videogames, gallery shows, and more. Plus: hip-hop tricksters Souls of Mischief return, local police gifted military weapons, witness comes forward in Alex Nieto shooting. Articles Online | Digital Edition
There's been lots of behind-the-scenes sniping and bad blood between supporters of D6 supervisorial candidates Debra Walker and Jane Kim, both strong and respected progressives who have resisted publicly criticizing one another...until now. Voters are receiving a mailer from the Walker campaign highlighting the facts that Kim is new to the district and a former Green.Read more »
In a turnabout from the usual immigration-related situation (in which ICE demands documents from immigrants) civil rights groups in Washington, DC. Arlington, VA. Santa Clara, CA. and San Francisco are requesting the release of documents concerning opt-out procedures in Immigration and Customs Enforcement's controversial "Secure Communities" program. Read more »
If you’re looking for a Halloween film fix outside of the usual slasher movies and traditional fright night fare, the Roxie’s got you covered.
Starting Fri/29 and running all weekend, the theater has a series of cult picks lined up. Friday night brings old-school sci-fi flicksThe Creature with the Atom Brain (1955) and The Man From Planet X (1951) to the screen in 35mm archival prints. Sat/30, check out the UK gore-fest Corruption (1968) or The Brood (1979), one of David Cronenberg’s first films. And on Sun/31, there will be a double Halloween dose of director Alex Cox, with Straight to Hell Returns (2010) and Searchers 2.0 (2007), complete with an appearance from Cox himself. Read more »
San Francisco’s Department of Elections had received 41,620 vote-by-mail returns so far That’s a fifth of the 210,993 vote-by-mail forms that were requested this year. And while we don’t know which districts these folks voted in, we do know how they were registered: Over half were Democrats (24,153 votes), a quarter were decline-to-state (10,563 votes), and a fifth were Republican (5,565 votes). Read more »
“Can you tell me why they call you the Jimi Hendrix of the violin?” I'm chatting with Eileen Ivers, Bronx-born one-time house blue electric violinist for Riverdance. One must admit, it seems like a curious moniker. Over the phone, Ivers dissolves in laughter.
“I wish I could,” she finally continues. “One wonderful gentleman from some paper put that. I'd love to think that in some way -- he had such a love of blues and roots -- I don't know, I won't even go there, but I feel so connected to the instrument.” Oh, plus she integrates into her concerts (one of which will be rocking Freight and Salvage Thu/4) liberal doses of jams, electric violin, wah-wah pedal, and, dare we say, soul? “I love to put that to an audience to open their minds -- this instrument can rock out as well.” The pieces are beginning to come together... Read more »
This weekend, despite the rain, I attended a marathon. Fortunately for my running shoes, it was a marathon of theatre indoors at the Berkeley Rep -- an epic play cycle of 19 vignettes set in Afghanistan, entitled “The Great Game”. Ever been to a theater marathon? Like any test of physical endurance, it’s not for the faint of heart. You have to prepare for it. Hydrate well. Wear comfortable clothing. And above all, pack plenty of snacks.
So you loved it when the princess in Disney movies was tied up, but aren't quite sure if you're ready to make the move to complicated (read: spendy) ropes and harnesses? No fear, my dear! Alluring ropes lady Midori is here to teach you how to hold down your naughty loved one with the aid of but a few handy scarves at her upcoming Good Vibrations class (Mon/1). Can you believe you can make a dildo harness from a kicky accessory? Come to think of it, dildo harnesses might just be the most kicky accessory of them all...
Amazing. Peter Hartlaub nominated me Tuesday (Oct. 26) in his Chronicle pop culture column to throw out the first pitch to open the World Series game in San Francisco.
In the spirit of "getting the rest of the country into the swing of things" in San Francisco, he also nominated actor Sean Penn, Rep. Barbara Lee, and Assemblyman Tom Ammiano. And he suggested Lawrence Ferlinghetti read the national anthem, that Tony Hall sing the national anthem, that the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence become the new ball dudes, and that a slow-moving flotilla of Critical Mass kayaks make the other boats late for the game in McCovey Cove. Read more »
The San Francisco Film Society's "French Cinema Now" kicks off Thurs/28 with a week of spankin' new Gallic films. Not sure which flick to choose, budding Cahiers du Cinéma contributor? Read on for a batch of brief reviews.
Copacabana (dir. Marc Fitoussi) It feels strange to call Copacabana subtle, especially when the film’s main character Babou (Isabelle Huppert) is consistently over-the-top. But this is a slight comedy, a character study to showcase Huppert’s considerable talent. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. Copacabana depends on its strong lead, and there are few stronger than Huppert, one of the most dynamic and adaptive French actors working today. Read more »
All good heavy metal strives to challenge the listener, pushing buttons and boundaries. Some of its most successful incarnations make people downright uncomfortable, achieving escalating extremes of tempo, tuning, and tone.
Slough Feg is one of San Francisco's most unique underground bands, an honorific that stems directly from its unique approach to the challenge of challenging. Eschewing thrash's BPM arms race, death metal's knuckle-dragging celebration of “brutality,” and black metal's dissonant, low-fi navel-gazing, the quartet (now two decades or, if you prefer, five drummers old) manages to discomfit with an unlikely tool: melody. New album The Animal Spiritswas released Tues/26 on Profound Lore Records.
Dick Meister. former labor editor of the SF Chronicle and KQED-TV Newsroom, has covered labor and politics for a half century. Contact him through his website, www.dickmeistersf.com, which includes more than 250 of his columns.
Whoopie! Our valiant Giants are in the World Series again, for the fourth time since they moved to the city from New York in 1958. Pretty exciting, the first series for the Giants since the 2002 series that was won, alas, by the New York Yankees.
Pretty exciting stuff coming up in this year's series too, Giants vs. Texas Rangers. But it was more than excitement that swept San Francisco during that first SF Giants World Series and the regular season leading up to the series. It was near-hysteria. As a young reporter for the SF Chronicle in those days, I felt it up close and very personal. Read more »
100 Years After WWI: The Poll Diaries - Franz Ferdinand, the band, has shaken up some summer music festivals in recent times, but 100 years ago in the summer of 1914, Archduke Franz Ferdinand's assassination shook up the world. In Chris Kraus's 2010 drama film The Poll Diaries, young Oda (Paula Beer) rejoins her aristocratic German family in Estonia. Throw in an Estonian anarchist and a society on the brink of World War I and you'll find there isn't too much hope for love. The Poll Diaries is the first film in the Goethe-Institut's weekly WWI film series and is an apt film to spearhead the selection of poignant, beautifully melancholy wartime movies. 6:30pm, $5. Goethe-Institut San Francisco, 530 Bush, SF. (415) 263-8760, www.goethe.de
Murder City Devils -- Combining elements of garage rock and punk with dark organ lines and caterwauling vocals, Seattle rockers The Murder City Devils were a musical powder keg from 1996 to 2001, just waiting to be lit by a live audience. After a five-year break up, the band has sporadically reunited for concerts here and there, but hadn't put out a new record until this month, dropping The White Ghost Has Blood On Its Hands, its first album release in 13 years. Fans can look forward to hearing the new material, along with old favorites, when Spencer Moody and cohorts hit the stage in what always promises to be a gloriously unpredictable and incendiary performance. 8pm, $22. Great American Music Hall, 859 O'Farrell, SF. (415) 885-0750 www.slimspresents.com
Mission of Burma - It's been 33 years since Boston's Mission of Burma unleashed its initial volley of sound, an EP and an album, Vs., followed by more than 20 years of silence. While the band unleashed 70 minutes of recorded material before an unfortunate breakup spurred by singer and guitarist Roger Miller's worsening tinnitus, the group grew in stature for the next two decades. After an unexpected reunion in 2004, Mission of Burma has released four additional critically-acclaimed albums. The most recent, 2012's Unsound, is full of impossibly fast tempos, odd tape-loops, and complex rhythms — generally the band's modus operandi, but even more amped up than ever before. Truly ageless and anything but a nostalgia act, the band hasn't visited the West Coast in upwards of four years. This set should include both stuff from the '80s as well as newer albums, along with (if we're lucky) a couple of delightfully dissonant Beatles covers the band's been known to play on special occasions. 7pm, $20. Independent, 628 Divisadero, SF. (415) 771-142, www.theindependentsf.com
San Francisco Zine Fest - Put down your iPhone, tablet, or other glowing device and stop thinking about zines in the past tense. DIY culture is thriving, and the San Francisco Zine Fest — which returns to Golden Gate Park this year — spotlights indie artists and writers, small presses, and the readers who love them. This year, there'll be panels on "Race, Gender, and the Future of Zines" and "Creating Feminist Spaces in DIY Culture;" an "Intro to Silkscreen" workshop; and a rather impressive slate of exhibitors and special guests, including Ryan Sands (Youth in Decline), Tomas Moniz (RAD DAD), and illustrator-cartoonist Hellen Jo. Today, 11am-5pm; Sun/31, 11am-4pm, free. SF County Fair Building, 1199 Ninth Ave, SF. www.sfzinefest.org
Oakland Pride and Festival - San Francisco may get all the glory, but Oakland? Oakland's where Sheila E.'s from, and that, friends, is why Oakland's annual pride celebration gets the drum queen as a headliner and celebrity grand marshal. The festival, which will take over downtown Oakland until 7pm, features three stages with a stacked bill full of live music, a children's area, a senior area, and a "wedding pavilion" where couples will be able to tie the knot — there's a story for the grandkids. And of course, food, booze, and all your favorite LGBT organizations will be out in style. Worth the BART trip? And how. 5 - 9pm, $10-20; no one turned away for lack of funds. Parade starts at 10:30am, festival 11am-7pm, $10. Parade: Broadway & 14th St; festival: Broadway & 20th St, Oakl. (510) 545-6251 www.oaklandpride.org
12th Annual Cowgirlpalooza - Dust off your best boots and work up an appetite for hooch, because this party on the Mission's sunniest patio — that's El Rio's — will have you cuttin' a rug to the best country crooners the Bay Area has to offer, including the Patsychords (a Patsy Cline tribute band), Velvetta, Jessica Rose, and more. Enthusiastically encouraged: Boots, checkered shirts, creative belt buckles, lassos, getting there early. This annual shindig, thrown by the bar's beloved, longtime sound guy Frank Gallagher, fills up in less time than it'd take you to watch City Slickers again. 4pm, $10. El Rio, 3158 Mission, SF. (415) 282-3325, www.elriosf.com
Gina Arnold Bloomsbury's 33 1/3 series of compact volumes examining popular albums offers a range of both musical styles (Dusty Springfield, ABBA, Jethro Tull, DJ Shadow, Sonic Youth, Van Dyke Parks, Guns N' Roses, Celine Dion) and authors (John Darnielle, holding forth on Black Sabbath). The 96th entry comes from veteran rock journalist and recent Stanford Ph.D Gina Arnold, whose take on Liz Phair's 1993 grunge-grrrl thesis Exile in Guyville offers what the New York Times calls "the most curious" entry in the 33 1/3 canon, taking a "free-form" approach rather than simply combing through each of Phair's lo-fi anthems. Seems kinda perfect, considering Phair's own unconventional music-biz approach — plus, any excuse to revisit "Fuck and Run" is always welcome. 7:30pm, free. Booksmith, 1644 Haight, SF. (415) 626-1409 www.booksmith.com