The Selector: September 11-16, 2013

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WEDNESDAY 11

Jimmy Cliff

At age 65, reggae legend Jimmy Cliff is experiencing perhaps one of the greatest bursts of artistic productivity in all of his five-decade-long and counting career. He's inspired countless other musicians over the years, including Bay Area punk rocker Tim Armstrong of Rancid and Operation Ivy, who was brought aboard to produce and perform on Cliff's newest album, last year's excellent Rebirth. The record includes an outstanding cover of the Clash's "Guns of Brixton," which references Cliff's movie and song "The Harder They Come" in its lyrics — bringing the music full circle, as it were. Don't miss the Rock and Roll Hall of Famer when he hits the Fillmore stage tonight. (Sean McCourt)

8pm, $39.50

Fillmore

1805 Geary, SF

(415) 346-6000

www.thefillmore.com

 

Chris Hardwick

In addition to appearing in a vast array of television (hello, Singled Out), film, radio, and online productions over the past 20 or so years, Chris Hardwick helped found Nerdist Industries, which has grown from one podcast in 2010 into a vast cross-medium mecca for all that proudly embrace their inner geek. Hardwick comes to the city this weekend with his hilarious stand-up act, and based on his guest spots at recent Wootstock events, he's sure to riff on both his Nerdist loves, as well other awkward yet uproariously comedic facets of life. (McCourt)

Wed/11-Thu/12, 8pm; Fri/13, 8 and 10:15pm; Sat/14, 7:30 and 9:45pm, $25

Cobb's Comedy Club

915 Columbus, SF

(415) 928-4320

www.cobbscomedyclub.com

 

THURSDAY 12

Secrets like These

While Enrico Labayen is a respected choreographer on his own terms, he also has a curious and generous spirit, opening his Labayen Dance Company to other dance makers. For this program, jam-packed with two of his own world premieres in addition to rep work, he invited Anandha Ray to present her new Quimera Project for which she'll bring a chorus of up to 30 tribal belly dancers. Additionally, two company members will debut pieces. Laura Bernasconi's Nourishment and Hunger will draw on ballet, classical Indian Odissi, and acro-yoga. For his new Secrets Like These, Victor Talledos is creating a narrative to music by Diana Krall. Labayen's small company also offers performance opportunities to dancers from around the world: Daiane Lopes da Silva (Brazil), Sandrine Cassini (France), Talledos (Mexico). (Rita Felciano)

Through Sat/14, 8pm; Sun/15, 3pm, $20–$25.

ODC Theater,

3153, 17th St, SF

(415) 853-9834

www.odctheater.org

 

The Singularity

Back in March, when San Francisco filmmaker Doug Wolens was promoting his DIY iTunes hit The Singularity, he explained the meaning of the title: "the point in time when computers become smarter than people." Some, including futurist Ray Kurzweil (one of the experts interviewed here), say it's an inevitability — a thought-provoking idea, to say the least. Chat with Wolens in person at tonight's screening of The Singularity as part of the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts' "Local Boy Makes Good: New Bay Area Film" series; he'll also be in residence at the Castro Theatre next week with a trio of his films, rounded out by 2000 environmental-activist profile Butterfly and 1996's toke-tastic doc Weed. (Cheryl Eddy)

7pm, $10

Yerba Buena Center for the Arts

701 Mission, SF

Also Mon/16, screenings begin at noon, $11

Castro Theatre

429 Castro, SF

thesingularityfilm.com/screenings

 

FRIDAY 13

"Too Much Light Makes the Baby Go Blind"

Thirty plays in 60 minutes — that might sound like too much even for the most attention span-challenged theatergoers among us. Fortunately, the raucous Neo-Futurists troupe has been putting on the surreal channel surf known as "Too Much Light Makes the Baby Go Blind" for 25 years in its hometown Chicago, and for 10 in New York — where it's won a celebrity cult following — so it's got this thing down to an almost metaphysical science. A night of semi-improv performance (a timer is set and the audience yells out the titles of the plays to be performed from a "menu") that whiplashes from affecting dramatic to absurdist comedy, with plenty of good-natured silliness thrown in, TMLMTBGB is like a strobe of emotions and situations — plates, buckets, ice cubes, wigs, and stuffed animals usually go flying, as do many preconceived notions of what theater ought to be. (Marke B.)

Through Sept. 29, 8pm, $15

Boxcar Theatre

505 Natoma, SF

(415) 967-2227

www.boxcartheatre.org

sfneofuturists.com

 

Death in June

Extremely depressing neofolk band Death in June is stopping by San Francisco for its long-awaited US tour. Initially starting as a post-punk, industrial project in the 1980s, the band shunned pretty-boy rock ideals, often donning ghoulish masks and costumes on stage. Death in June has given influence to plenty of contemporary bands such as metal band Agalloch and darkwave horde Faun, but the band isn't without controversy of its own. It's been known for using a skull, the totenkopf, synonymous with the Nazi movement. Often criticized for using SS insignia, the band has derided any and all accusations of fascism and white supremacy, being active in the British '80s anti-fascist movement and playing in concerts such as "Rock Against Racism." So back to the music: the group released Snow Bunker Tapes, guitar-backed versions of Peaceful Snow, on Neuropa this year. Get sad, get creepy, and slump over to the Mezzanine. (Erin Dage)

120 Minutes with oOoOO, DJ Omar, CHAUNCEY_CC

9pm, $30

Mezzanine

444 Jessie, SF

(415) 625-8880

www.mezzaninesf.com

 

SATURDAY 14

Autumn Moon Festival

This widely-attended cultural festival is the gold star of Chinatown events, filling its chaotic streets with even more buzz than normal and thousands of additional of people. A myriad of crafts, art, live music, dancers in costume, drumming groups, and curious attendees congregate for a fun and lively weekend each year. The Moon Festival, traditionally celebrated when the moon is said to be at its fullest and brightest of the year, gives families the opportunity to get together while enjoying great food and participating in the Lion and Dragon dances, both of which you don't want to miss if you plan on attending. The whole weekend is an explosion of color and the perfect chance to learn a little more about Chinese culture. (Hillary Smith)

Through Sun/15, 11am-6pm, free

California and Grant, SF

www.moonfestival.org

 

Atheist Film Festival

The Atheist Film Festival, now in its fifth year, is cheeky enough to refer to itself as "a film festival you can believe in" — which bodes well for the sort of programming one can expect. The fest packs a lot into a single day, including a world premiere (doc Hug an Atheist, about what it means to be an atheist in America today) and acclaimed narratives The Magdalene Sisters (2002) and Creation (2009). Plus, a trio of docs: fake-guru experiment Kumaré (2011); fundamentalism-in-public-schools exposé Sophia Investigates the Good News Club; and The Revisionaries, which won the Best Doc jury prize at the 2013 SF IndieFest. The power of film compels you! (Eddy)

Noon, $12 (festival pass, $45)

Roxie Theater

3117 16th St, SF

www.sfatheistfilmfestival.org

 

Magic Trick

If there's anything supernatural about the band Magic Trick, it's in frontperson Tim Cohen's seeming ability to be in several places at once. Between the Fresh & Onlys, solo projects, and work with other bands, his prolificacy makes you wonder. But more than witchcraft, magic tricks usually involve sleight of hand. With Cohen's signature deep voice and romantic songwriting, Magic Trick at times directly echoes the Fresh & Onlys. Don't be fooled: With three added band members and a minimalism that makes the music more contemplative and a little stranger, Magic Trick surprises. See what tricks lie up the record sleeve on the band's new album, The Glad Birth of Love, which the Chapel will celebrate on Saturday. (Laura Kerry)

With the Range of Light Wilderness, Pure Bliss, Cool Ghouls

9pm, $12

Chapel

777 Valencia, SF

(415) 551-5157

www.thechapelsf.com

 

Rock The Bells

The country's pre-eminent hip-hop festival will coming to the Bay Area this Saturday and Sunday, bringing a large and diverse crew of rap acts. There's something for every kind of hip-hop head at this festival. For fans of weird rap, there's Danny Brown, for fans of ratchet rap, there's Juicy J, for the homers, there's a E-40-Too $hort duet and IamSu!, and for fans of hologram rap there will be performances from hologram Eazy-E and ODB. For those you taking Caltrain from the city, remember that the train only runs once a hour and takes more than a hour to get to Mountain View. (George McIntire)

Also Sun/15, 11am, $65–$239

Shoreline Amphitheater

One Amphitheatre Pkwy, Mountain View

(800) 745-3000

www.rockthebells.net

 

SUNDAY 15

Darwin Deez

Darwin Deez is known for nutty antics like bringing a head of cabbage out onto the stage (as a "symbol of frugalness") and chucking it at the crowd to eat. And his wriggly, emo-pop second album Songs for Imaginative People proved that he hasn't forgotten about his equally nutty fanbase. His half-joking-totally-serious approach to songwriting garners a very unique brand of follower, the kind of person who likes things weird. The tracks on Songs aren't as easy to swallow as those on his debut, self-titled album Darwin Deez. Tracks swing by in a cacophony of synthy beats and buzzing electric riffs and Deez's frequently deadpan voice undeniably weaves through them in a disjointed way — adding a disheveled tone to the album. But from the silly and unpredictable misfit whose greatest obsession may be breakfast food, who'd expect anything else? (Smith)

With Caged Animals, the Soonest

$15, 9pm

Bottom of the Hill

1233 17th St., SF

(415) 626-4455

www.bottomofthehill.com

 

MONDAY 16

John Williams

Composer John Williams has written the scores for some of the most beloved films of all time — pieces of music that has become so interwoven with the onscreen narratives that it's almost impossible to imagine the movies without them — Star Wars, JAWS, Indiana Jones, Superman, E.T., Close Encounters of the Third Kind, Jurassic Park, and many, many more. Tonight is a rare chance to see the maestro live and in person, conducting the San Francisco Symphony and leading them through some of his greatest works. Friend and frequent collaborator director Steven Spielberg will also appear for part of the program as a special guest host. (McCourt)

8pm, $15–$152

Davies Symphony Hall

201 Van Ness Ave., SF

(415) 864-6000

www.sfsymphony.org

 

TUESDAY 17

The So So Glos

Did you want to spend a night pogo-ing around like the animal you are? The So So Glos, gritty DIY punks from Brooklyn, have just what the doctor ordered. Literally a band of brothers (the majority of the group is blood-related), the So So Glos lay testament to what hard work and determination can accomplish. Helping establish East Coast all-ages DIY venues such as Market Hotel and "Shea Stadium" (where the band also lives), the group is dedicated to keeping the proverbial DIY scene alive. Often compared to fellow Brooklynites Japanther, the So So Glos are hot off their newest release Blowout. The album has been described "in your face" and hi-fi! Also on the bill is unfortunately-named Diarrhea Planet, and Unstrung. Straight off Burger Records, the Tennessee-based Diarrhea Planet is Southern-fried Ramones worship while SF-based trio Unstrung goes for a more aggressive, punk route. (Dage)

9pm, $10

Brick and Mortar Music Hall

1710 Mission, SF

(415) 371-1631

www.brickandmortarmusic.com