Our Weekly Picks: March 21-27



Al Pacino

Iconic actor Al Pacino brings his new experimental documentary Wilde Salome to the city tonight for its U.S. debut screening, with a red carpet celebration and a variety of special guests including Jean-Paul Gaultier, Dita Von Teese, and more. Pacino has described the film, a look into legendary writer Oscar Wilde's works and influence, as his most personal project ever, and he will also be on hand tonight for the gala screening that benefits the GLBT Historical Society, and commemorates the 130th anniversary of the legendary writer's visit to San Francisco. (Sean McCourt)

6 p.m., $25

Castro Theatre

429 Castro, SF

(415) 777-5455



of Montreal

A part conspiratorial, part confessional Kevin Barnes lies at the heart of Paralytic Stalks, the latest release from the of Montreal mastermind and his rotating ensemble of collaborators. Paralytic is complex and genre-bending like most of the of Montreal repertoire. In Paralytic's first half, Barnes croons moody lyrics transposed on psychedelic pop melodies not unlike 2007's Hissing Fauna, Are You The Destroyer? Paralytic's second half challenges listeners with Barnes' violent tones jumbled with harrowing electronic-classical interludes. (Kevin Lee)

With Deerhoof, Kishi Bashi

8 p.m., $21


333 11th St., SF

(415) 255-0333


Also Thurs/22, 8 p.m., $22


1805 Geary, SF

(415) 346-6000




An electro rock'n'roll circus led by an inspired madman, Berlin's Bonaparte has campaigned through Europe, Russia, and Australian, but is just now taking aim at the U.S. via SXSW. A rotating collective of musicians, designers, dancers, and freaks (performing in wildly excessive costumes), Bonaparte combines a trash punk energy with a theatricality that borders on the surreal. The ringleader, Tobias Jundt, is a sharp lyricist hiding behind dada non sequiturs and unbridled hedonism. (Witness the apt "gloryhole to the universe" line on "Computer in Love.") Remember: when they ask "Are you ready to party with the Bonaparte?" — it's a rhetorical question. (Ryan Prendiville)

With 2 Men Will Move You, Stay Gold DJs Rapid Fire and Pink Lightning

9 p.m., $10

Public Works

161 Erie, SF

(415) 932-0955



indifference and MASTERWORK

Outsiders and insiders at once, Lisa Townsend and Mica Sigourney culminate their CounterPULSE winter residencies with indifference and MASTERWORK. Experimental choreographer Townsend leaps off from Camus and the idea of free will in a dance-theater piece investigating the conflict between society and the solitary action, or not, of the stranger. Sigourney offers MASTERWORK, a concept demanding the all-caps title, an experiment in hubris promising "the most important performance of our generation and time." Maybe. But if you've seen any of Sigourney's work (recently in Laura Arrington's "Wag," or more recently with a bottle of bourbon, two glasses, and some sheets of paper at a crowded reading in the SomARTS men's room) —or drag persona VivvyAnne ForeverMORE! and the envelope-pushing drag queen confab-cabaret "Work MORE!" — you'll be there just to make sure. (Robert Avila)

Thurs/22-Sun/25, 8 p.m., $20


1310 Mission, SF

(415) 626-2060 www.counterpulse.org


"Hope Mohr Dance: Fifth Annual Home Season"

Christy Funsch recently choreographed an intriguing evening of solos for Bay Area dancers. One of its delights was watching Hope Mohr — exquisite, focused and powerful — take to the stage. In the last few years Mohr has focused her energy on creating work for her own company, but she clearly is still a mesmerizing performer. During her Fifth Annual Home Season, she is premiering "Reluctant Light" for her troupe, but she will also dance her 2011 solo "Plainsong", inspired by the myth of Penelope and first seen at last year's San Francisco International Dance Festival. As is her want, Mohr has invited an out of town company whose work she feels complements her own to share this evening. They are the Dušan Týnek Dance Theatre from New York. (Rita Felciano)

Thurs/22-Sat/24, 8 p.m., $20–$25

Z Space

450 Florida, SF

(800) 838-3006



The Brightness of the Day . . .

Peter Whitehead makes instruments out of the things you've got in your kitchen, toolbox, and garbage bin — and makes them sound fucking rad. Brightness of the Day . . . will feature his experimental instruments, including his spoon harp, ektar, and buzzing bass lyre, alongside his textile paintings and collages. Whitehead's visual art and musical endeavors parallel each other: his art illustrates music's patterns and variation, and he conceptualizes music visually. Whitehead has exhibited his instruments in various museums and galleries in the past, but this is the first time he'll be bringing together the various aspects of his visual art, music, and instrument building for an exhibit. (Mia Sullivan)

6 p.m., free


66 Elgin Park, SF

(415) 621-8377




When Saviours first broke into the Bay Area metal and punk scenes, their unrepentant Thin Lizzy worship, filtered through a nasty hardcore sensibility, was as refreshing as a cold Hamm's on a hot Tuesday afternoon. Like their recently-disbanded peers, Annihilation Time, Saviours dig deep into the record vault of the great hoary cannon of metal's early days, reemerging with forgotten treasures like the weedeley-weedeley twin-guitar lead, and lyrics about getting epically baked. The band plans to get loud at a familiar San Francisco haunt, the Elbo Room, this Friday. (Tony Papanikolas)

With Holy Grail, Hazard's Cure

9:30 p.m., $10–$13

Elbo Room

647 Valencia, SF

(415) 552-7788




Someone repeatedly tapping a note on a natural sounding piano. A bunch of finger snaps. An additional R&B riff on the keys. A man singing...Fitz and the Tantrums?...with an accent. Who is this? Metronomy? French accent. Phoenix? An electro snare/kick. MGMT? Background children's vocals. Justice? Errrrr. Times up. We could play another song, or the full album, but it probably wouldn't help. With Living on the Edge of Time, an album inspired by life as a lonely electronic musician on the road, French producer Yuksek expanded his sound — heading into a lighter, melodic though dance-oriented pop territory — as well as his band, which kicks off its US tour here. (Prendiville)

With Tenderlions, Realboy, DJ Aaron Axelsen

9 p.m., $15


444 Jessie, SF

(415) 625-8880





Fans of silent film and early cinema are in for an incredibly special treat this week and next when the San Francisco Silent Film Festival presents a series of screenings featuring Abel Gance's legendary 1927 masterpiece Napoleon. Lauded for its use of then-groundbreaking and innovative techniques, the epic five-and-a-half hour biography of the French ruler has been painstakingly restored over the past several years, and will be shown accompanied by a live musical score performed by the Oakland East Bay Symphony. Don't miss the opportunity to see this amazing event in the Bay Area's own movie palace, the Paramount Theatre — these performances will not be staged anywhere else in the world. (McCourt)

Sat/24-Sun/25, March 31, April 1

1:30 p.m., $40–$120

Paramount Theatre

2025 Broadway, Oakl.



Thee Oh Sees

As prolific as they are prodigiously loud, San Francisco favorites Thee Oh Sees have cultivated over the course of ten albums (and a shitload of EPs, singles, etc.) a familiar wilderness, equal parts Black Flag and Their Satanic Majesties Request. This shouldn't mask how unpredictable the band can sound — like the vaguely grotesque, multicolored nightmare aesthetic of the band's instantly recognizable fliers and album covers, Thee Oh Sees couldn't be any less concerned with weirding out our delicate sensibilities. (Papanikolas)

With White Mystery, Coathangers, Guantanamo Baywatch, Cyclops

9 p.m., $10

Thee Parkside

1600 17th St., SF

(415) 252-1330



The Magnetic Fields

The Magnetic Fields are known for their sardonic, poetic, and, at times, absolutely hilarious songs that tend to focus on loneliness, sexual identity, unrequited love, and other love-related mishaps. Lead singer-songwriter Stephin Merritt has been releasing albums with the Magnetic Fields for more than two decades. Their new album, Love at the Bottom of the Sea, marks the indie pop group's return to a synthy sound, which they were all about in the '90s, but veered from in their past three albums (Realism, Distortion, and I). Love at the Bottom of the Sea delves into sexual taboos with catchy tracks like "God Wants Us to Wait" and "Andrew in Drag." (Sullivan)

8 p.m., $35

Fox Theater

1807 Telegraph, Oakl.

(510) 548-3010



Kendrick Lamar

Best of lists, while good for selling issues or getting views, are guaranteed to start arguments. So it's no surprise that when XXL released its 2012 Freshmen Issue, crowning emerging hip-hop artists, there was fallout: A$AP Rocky opted out, readers cried foul over selections, and firebrand Azaelia Banks put Iggy Azalea on blast (starting a beef which, given their names, was inevitable.) Time will sort it out, though, as it has with 2011 inductee Kendrick Lamar, who a year later has made the grade, and is now teasing a follow-up to his stellar Section.80. (Although I'm still trying to understand his "I climax where you begin" line on "Rigamortis.") (Ryan Prendiville) With Hopsin 8 p.m., $30-$50 Regency Ballroom 1300 Van Ness, SF (800) 745-3000 www.theregencyballroom.com


Mr. Gnome

Fuzzy Cleveland drums-and-guitar duo Mr. Gnome has been named some variant on the "band to watch" so many times now, it's best you lift your chin and pay attention. Maybe, you'll also be scratching that chin, because the band — sugary singer-guitarist Nicole Barille and thwacking drummer-pianist Sam Meister — doesn't quite sound like anything else. It's an eye-popping hybrid. And its aesthetic of natural psychedelia in hazy orange and yellow hues with Donny Darko-esque imaginary belies the dark, hard rocking core. Not that they don't have fun with their music, there are spacey shots of wailing guitars and the occasional high vocal peeps ("Bit of Tongue"), it's just far more realized a sound than one might expect based on the superficial. Listening yet? (Emily Savage)

With Electric Shepherd & Outlaw, Plastic Villians

8 p.m., $8

Thee Parkside

1600 17th St., SF

(415) 252-1330



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