Sunday, December 27, 2009

Soledad Barrio and Noche Flamenca at Lucille Lortel Theatre

Madrid’s Noche Flamenca is recognized as the most authentic flamenco touring ensemble and likes to call New York City home in the winter months. We are lucky to get a chance to see these emotional performances at the Lucille Lortel Theatre this year. Noche Flamenca celebrates the essence, purity and integrity of traditional flamenco. Flamenco is made up of three elements cante (song), Baile (dance), and Toque (guitar). Some say song is the heart of flamenco, but most people recognize it because of the Dance that uses the arms and elbows with rhythmic stomping of the feet. In Spain flamenco came from a blending of the local customs with Arabic and Gypsy Cultures. This song and dance where a tradition during the retaking of the Iberian Peninsula from the Moors that took over 800 years in the Middle Ages. Then in the Golden Age of Flamenco this art went from groups in town squares to public performances in cafés cantantes. This is when the Guitar players supporting the dancers became more and more prevalent. The first guitars are thought to have originated in Spain in the 15Th century. With so much history one can see why this is not like any other art form. In this dance company you get a true communal spirit with the singers, dancers and musicians. Noche Flamenca has been the passion of Artistic Director Martín Santangelo and wife Soledad Barrio since 1993. When Soledad Barrio takes the stage its such an emotional experience. She is considered one of the greatest performers of her time. Soledad Barrio has won awards from over 12 different countries for her excellence in dance. The singing is so heart felt along with the beautiful strumming of the guitars and the expressive Dance, it's just so moving. Everyone in New York has only till January 16 catch the world renowned Noche Flamenca.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

The Third Man

One of classic film noir's undisputed masterpieces has a week long run at the Film Forum. So now through to the 29Th is your chance to see the 1949 British black and white film The Third Man. This is the 60Th anniversary and the Forum has a new 35mm print. This copy is of the British release and begins with the voice of director Carol Reed, describing post-war Vienna from the point of view of a racketeer. Unlike the US release that has eleven minutes cut off and has a different voice over. "I never knew the old Vienna..." starts off the fast paced clips of the city devastated and recovering from the Second World War. This is a city divided, split into five zones. One international zone and four separate zones each representing one of the victorious Allies. This is a city at start of the Cold War where the black market is king and racketeering is a way of life. In comes the American pulp author Holly Martins (Joseph Cotten) looking for his old friend that sent him a plain ticket and a job offer. This "friend" is Harry Lime played by the legendary Orson Welles. On arrival Martins discovers that Lime has been recently killed by a truck accident. Martins get in town just in time for the funeral and finds strange things when talking to Harry's friends and enemies. This starts Martins off on a goose chase to find out what happened in Limes last moments. Everyone that was at the scene knew Lime and had the same two man story. This seemed strange so Martins so he takes a offer to stay in town and do a lecture on writing so he can look around. Limes porter that saw more then he should have reviles that there was a third man. Maybe Anna (Alida Valli), Lime's actress girlfriend can be of some help. She is one of the only people that cared for the off the wall Lime. With no subtitle's you understand just as much as Martins does as he searches for the truth. Unusual camera angles, seedy locations, and dark atmosphere make this film unlike any other. Reed used tricks that added to the feel of the film. Water was used to make light reflect off the cobbled streets, dark shadows where used to hide and show plot points and a musical score played by completely on the zither made everything seem suspenseful and strange. Not that some humor was not slipped in. "You know what the fellow said – in Italy, for thirty years under the Borgias, they had warfare, terror, murder and bloodshed, but they produced Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci and the Renaissance. In Switzerland, they had brotherly love, they had five hundred years of democracy and peace – and what did that produce? The cuckoo clock."added in the script by Welles. Then Welles latter said "When the picture came out, the Swiss very nicely pointed out to me that they've never made any cuckoo clocks." This got 100% on the tomatometer on . So get down to the Film Forum on Houston just west of 6th Ave and enjoy one of the best films of all time.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

STEVE KIMOCK & CRAZY ENGINE Late Night Dec. 04, 09

Stave Kimock gave New York two chances to see him late night with Crazy Engine. This engine runs smooth with his son John Kimock on drums and Melvin Seals with his legendary Hammond B3. The old keyboard sounds great when Stave uses his own vintage analog equipment. With them is cello player from NYC's indie music scene named Trevor Exter. If that is not crazy enough Bobby Vega was a guest for these two dates. You could have seen them twice and get two completely different experiences. The second show was at BB Kings which is a ideal place to see a show and have drinks. When the Kimocks come back to the big city go out and check them out.

Friday, December 4, 2009

The Road

This is a epic story that is at its root a great post-apocalyptic Sci-Fi scenario. After a mysterious end of days the world becomes day to day test for survival. This journey through a barren landscape heads south in hope of finding warmer winters. The travelers are one a man with memories of a world gone forever, and the other a boy that is a spitting image of his mother who knows nothing but this grim reality. Wandering down the road is as dangerous as it is necessary. Is life worth living when all it consist of is trying to scavenge for food and hide from the bad guys. Hard to stay in the present when some relics of the old world bring back flashes of yesterday, and you have to jerk awake everyday from dreams in color. Must keep going, must keep checking stuff out, must be weary of anyone on the road. Filmed in parts of the America like New Orleans, Mount St. Helens, and run-down parts of Pittsburgh its easy to see how close we could be getting to a much harder existence. In this even lonely wanderer's like Robert Duvall realize "there were signs" that this was coming.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Lars von Trier's Antichrist

This film starts off with a slow motion black and white sex scene between an unnamed couple. The graphic sex is not what brothers you about this film, its the violence. In Hack-'em-up horror movies the grotesque violence seems fake due to lack in plot and character development. The violence in this film seems all two real. This Suspense Thriller has a intense duologue and a creepy vibe. This husband and wife are trying to work through the grief from losing a child. When a film has such a serious approach and only two roles it has to have superior acting. That this film has Willem Dafoe in one role says a lot. What Charlotte Gainsbourg has done with this part won her Best Actress at the 2009 Cannes Film Festival, where some critics had a negative view on the explicit sexual violence. This was written and directed by Lars von Trier, who had wanted to do a horror film for some time. In this we get slow and socking visuals coupled with emotional heartbreak that lead to terrifying occurrences.

Rock 'n' Roll Alert: Tom Pettys Live Anthology Box Set

Tom Petty one of Americas favorite southern boys has done it again. He has answered the question, How do you come out with a new box set of old stuff? He has done this by making a four disc box set of live music. Its is set up with the early years 76' -81', on disc one including everything from "American Girl," to "Refugee." Then the second disc is 82' to 87' with hits like "Don't Come Around Here No More," and "You Got Lucky." Disc three has the video songs "Free Fallin," and "Learning to Fly." Plus much more of Pettys work like "I Won't Back Down" and "Into the Great Wide Open." With so many great songs its hard to believe Tom can add more but he has. The forth disc is all B-sides that where only released in Europe, so there are "new" to the US. Within these tracks are some interesting covers, one is Van Morrison's tune "I'm Tired Joey Boy," another is Charlie Rich's hit "Lonely Weekend." Through it all the Heartbreakers are right there behind him. This set was going to be just two discs but then it exploded into four and we can be thankful for that.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Pixies Nov. 26th, 09

It seems that New York has a sweet spot for bands from Massachusetts. Strange that some of the states residents are "Massholes" and others are Rock Gods. But if you go up to say.. Boston you find great venues and killer shows. You can and will find that most of the state knows how to rock, its just some of their laws that suck. One being that you can only buy booze if you have in state ID. Lucky for bands like the Pixies we don't card them for a drink. They graced NYC with their presence four times in the last week. Selling out show after show, was a snap. They even added a late night show and we all love to support late night in the city that never sleeps. A fan on the way out said that the Pixies did three songs, then Doolittle in its entirety and then three more songs. The smart late night audience got much more. First you thought it was over at "Into the White," ready to find you coat after "Nimrod's Son," but no they came out a third time with "Where Is My Mind." The next time you hear, "The Pixies are coming!! The Pixies are coming!! either hide or grab a ticket.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

John Fogerty Nov. 24th, 09

With such a busy weekend ahead it is good to start with the classics. John Fogerty is one talented musician and songwriter. His looked and acted just like his band on stage behind him and most of them were 20 years younger. Starting strong with "Green River" and his first hit single with CCR "Susie Q," in the first ten minutes. It could make you dizzy watching him switch guitar's. Seems like he had one of every color gold, red, blue, black, an acoustic, maybe more its was hard to count. There was also a slide guitar and two other guitar players on stage. Fogerty covered the old stuff with a heap of tunes from the 70's. ("Bad Moon Rising", "Born on the Bayou"," Fortunate Son," "Have You Ever Seen the Rain?") He also played "Garden Party", "When Will I Be Loved" and other Solo Hits with stuff from a the new record. He loves the Blues and Country and did covers from both genres. He even brought out some old Buck Owens with "I Don't Care." (Just As Long As You Love Me) Wait is that another guitar? Got to have a bat shaped guitar for the song he opened the new Yankees Stadium with "Centerfield." Fogerty never left the stage except for a split second before a three song encore. His voice is so unchanged over the years and he still likes to rock it. He proves that wearing plaid was always in.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Book Then Movie: The Road

You think we have problems now just Wait till the end of civilization is upon us. With all these movies about the "end of days" it's hard to look forward to the future, but remember you never know what the future can bring. The Road by Cormac McCarthy is a short little narrative about the day to day hardships of a man and his son after the would has turned to "ash." Without any chapters the small journal like entries are followed by some dialogue between the two wonders. Lots of Danger out there on the road but you have to travel south as the winters are getting longer, darker, and colder. This book was almost to easy to finish. (read in three sittings) The movie looks good with a good director and a a fitting cast, but you don't want to feel like you missed out when someone says, "you should have read the Book first."

Sonic Youth and Dion. Jr. Nov. 21st, 09

This weekend came and went with only one show for this reporter. On stage was not only Sonic Youth, old schoolers of NYC Noise Rock, but they brought with them Dino. Jr. Yes, the boys from Amherst Mass. love to play New York. Scoring a ticket and walking in as Dino's six foot Marshall Stacks started to pump out huge amounts of sound was key. They played a mixed set of old and new songs including "Over It" from their ninth studio album "Farm." Get the Vinyl edition of this album and get a free 7" inch white vinyl with live tracks "I Don't Wanna Go There" and "Tarpit." This grunge power trio brought everyone out early for terminal 5, filling the floor by eight thirty. The kids got so riled up that some of them crowed surfed. It was a nice change of pace to see a drummer that does so much with so little. Murph and his jazz like Drum kit left lots of room for J Mascis and Lou Barlow. (and their Stacks) Sonic Youth also came out with a new album "The Eternal," not that this was a surprise. Some say that Sonic Youth will never stop. The great Thurston Moore was looking good in black and white. The set was most of the new material with a sprinkling of old stuff from as far back as the 80's. The lights were kind of a surprise, no video screen this year. If you like to listen to the show a second time you have two choices. One place is at Where you can here the set pieced together with videos and old live footage, or you can go to and get the real show!!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Pirate Radio

There is no disputing Rock 'n' Roll has shaped are lives. The last five decades have given us so many tunes, riffs, and love songs. It is hard to believe the British government was against Rock 'n' Roll on the radio, but they were in 1966. The '60's was the age of the concept album. This brought about some of the best Rock music of all time. In the '70s it was said that radio was king. That might not have happened without some upstarts in the UK and their pirate radio stations. When you think pirate radio an unlicensed station in someones basement might come to mind. No this was real "Pirate Radio" on boats in the ocean off England pumping out rock and or roll. In this movie music and comedy mix with some of our favorite actors as the DJ's. Philip Seymour Hoffman plays "The Count," the only American on this ship of Brits. The captain of this "ship of fools" is Quentin played Bill Nighy. In this movie, as in life, the government in the bad guy and Kenneth Branagh plays the top Brit is in charge of sinking the ship. This is all brought to us from "feel good" director Richard Curtis which gave us “Bridget Jone’s Diary,” “Notting Hill,” and “Love Actually." Yet another great movie set in one of the best decades. Here you get it all the sex, the love, and the rock 'n' roll.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Metallica Nov. 15th, 09

Metallica always puts on a great show. This last weekend they put on two great shows. Some concert professionals got in to both shows, others settled for one. One Sunday the set dove deeper into the old stuff then the night before. Late seems to be a theme this week, late getting out of work and late trains makes one too late for the open acts. When finally getting inside the Garden you could see that this was different then other Metallica shows. The stage was set up in the round with the people packed on the floor in all directions. When they took the stage a laser show blazed through the whole room. Then after the lasers the giant casket shaped lightning trusses move up and down with every song. They did not skimp on the lights, that is for sure. These California boys used almost ever spot light rig in the ceiling of MSG. The drums turned around in one slow circle so you could see Lars from every angle. It was cool to see his feet on the bass drum peddles. Not only did one get to see the band from all sides, but you could enjoy seeing the crowed at the far end of the stage go crazy. This was one of the coolest crowds at the garden all year. There was not one, but two mash pits, and tons of kids crowd surfing. The security guards where not pulling people down but pushing them back over the crowd. Metallica only left the stage to pick up a new guitar or for the movement of the drums. It was a night for deep cuts and heavy riffs. If there is a chance to see Metallica go and have the time of your life.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Peaches' Nov 14Th, 09

When it comes to stage shows there is nothing as crazy and sexy as Peaches'. Getting uptown is hard to do sometimes, or maybe getting up to go uptown is the problem. Whichever it was this reporter was not the only one that was late. For one minute Terminal 5 looked like it might stay half empty. Then as she took the stage the floor filled up to where people were almost standing on top of each other. This new show has so many costumes changes it makes ones head spin. She puts it all on then takes it all off, everything from fur to spandex and leather to well virtually nothing. This Canadian is known for her flamboyant stage antics. She has the dance rock thing down to a science. The last album "I feel cream" is more Dance then Rock. Her backing band Sweet Machine get where she is coming from and where she is trying to make the audience go. They all have so many different gadgets, and toys to manipulate beats and feed back. They came out for three encores. On one Peaches' got many in the crowed to take their shirts off. Not everyone got the clothing back, some left topless. And as Peaches' left the stage she said that she hoped it was the best show we had ever seen. It was definitely one of the best. Check out the setlist the best way by listening to it on
Pictures Coming soon......

Monday, November 16, 2009

Bassnectar Nov. 13th, 09

Walking through the city on a rainy night can sometimes surprise you. When you think your night is over something else to do justs pops up. This is what happened on the way to Union Square on Friday. Who new that San Francisco based music project slash social experimentation Bassnectar was playing the Fillmore. The show went till two in the morning, so getting there just after midnight meant that Bassnactar had just took the stage. It is hard to see what this dance music is trying to accomplish because it takes on so much. Using some electronic methods to manipulate baselines of all speeds and from almost any source. Name a type of music and it might be mixed in, Rock, Blues, even Salsa. Then don't forget other styles brought in like Rap, Ska and Dub. The place was packed and whatever this music is it does a good job of keeping the kids dancing.

DIR EN GREY Nov. 13th, 09

This Friday was the not only the 13Th, but was the last show of a three night run at the Gramercy for the Japanese band Dir En Grey. This band formed over ten years ago and has crossed the language barriers to become popular across the US and around the world. Their sound and stage show is Gothic in nature, but hard to place in a genre. Stylistic and progressive could be two of many adjectives used to describe their music. They performed with the Deftones for a small run and now have kids sleeping on the streets of NYC to get into a packed theater. The Bassist (Toshiya) and Guitarists (Kaoru) have a tight sound together on stage. Vocalist (Kyo) is known for his effortless switch from harmonious singing to deep growl, which mesmerized this young crowed without a word of English. The best part was the drummer (Shinya) and his 52 piece Pearl drum kit with three drums and two cymbals over his head. This was a incredible show one to catch next time if you could get in.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Rock and Roll Alert: AC/DC Backtracks Box Set

"For those about to rock" here is a set for you. This box set is chucked full music including "studio rarities," and has two discs of “live rarities.” This is a huge deal for all of us live music fans. You get two DVDs, three CD's, a hardcover book and “memorabilia from the band’s earliest days of touring.” What kind of Memorabilia? Well a little of everything lithographs, a poster, and a replica of one of the fake $100 bills used to shower audiences during the ‘91 Moneytalks tour. This and much more crap that should send you speeding down memory lane. That's not all they take care of the Vinyl lovers with a LP featuring 12 studio rarities. All this and more stuffed inside a functional 1-watt guitar amplifier. Yes, you can play riffs through you box set like Angus Young does on the Backtracks website. A New box set means new shit from our favorite Aussie band, only $200 BUCKS.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

"(Untitled)" with Adam Goldberg

Have you ever stepped into a art gallery and thought, "What was this artist thinking?" This reaction might be because the show is plain, commercial and uninteresting. Or it might be on the other extreme, and be out-there shit that know one would want in their house. Is this the art world now? Before, like in the Renaissance, an artist was commissioned and had patrons. Art was paid for before it was finished. Now in a supply and demanded world art is made by "artist" and then put on display to be sold. If it sells then a new star is born. Does only good art sell, or does some crap get sold as art? This movie asks these funny questions and many more. Like, does music need to be pleasing to the ear to be music? Yes, this is a heady movie with jokes made to make you laugh first and think second. We see the "downtown" art world through the eyes of two brothers. One brother a composer of avant-garde works played by Adam Goldberg from "2 Days in Paris." The other brother is a painter that can only get his art up on walls of hotel chains. Then in comes the fashionable gallery owner Madeleine. (Marley Shelton) She has a inner struggle of keeping the painter as her backroom meal ticket, and putting on new shows of "outsider" art. When she meets the truly out-there composer she starts a romance that puts one brother against the other. Many other weirdos make this satire complete, the artists themselves, the art collector that buys anything, and the gallery employee that makes sale's by pointing out what should be obvious to any "art lover." If you know about art you might be able to tell who exactly they are making fun of. If you are a novice everything is funny, especially the on going joke about Madeleine's choice in noisy clothing. In the end is the contemporary art world just catering to bigwigs? Are artist more about the hype then the art? Shouldn't art be more about the process then the product? If you want to be shown all this in a dark comedy then go out and see "(Untitled)."

Monday, November 9, 2009

Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band Nov. 7th, 09

It is something to see Bruce & the E Street Band at MSG. The hometown fans will travel to see Springsteen even after five shows in Jersey. One woman had seen all five and had tickets for both MSG shows. The line for the will call was all the way down the steps to 7Th Ave. This was the second time the man, and the band played the Garden in all of two weeks. On this occasion they played "The Wild, The Innocent and the E Street Shuffle." With a line of 100 people to get in "if" they release extra seats, it was hard to get in on time, but getting in is half the battle. Once in a seat one look at the trimmed down stage and you knew it was all about the music. After 1984's "The Wild" he gathered signs from fans and played two of the songs. "Does This Bus Stop at 82ND Street" one sign said with numbers, and the other with a Yankee jersey on it said "Glory Days." It was a sight to see all the fans together in a packed MSG. Then at the end they went from "Dancing In The Dark" To "Your Love Keeps Lifting Me Higher, and Higher" with Elvis Costello helping out on vocals. Bruce really knows how to give the crowed what it wants, more Bruce.

Gentlemen Broncos

This movie is about a young kid Benjamin (Michael Angarano) that has dreams of being a science fiction writer. His story gets riped off by has been Sci-Fi writer Ronald Chevalier. (Jemaine Clement) This movie is set in the only place in the country that could be so behind the times - Utah. If you are not into Science Fiction or have never been to Utah you might not get all the jokes in this film. If you do read authors like Larry Niven, Piers Anthony, or even Ray Bradbury then you will find this film right up your alley. The on-going joke on book covers is nicely done. Jennifer Coolidge plays the part of the home schooling, church going, popcorn ball making Utah mother, and Sam Rockwell plays the Sci-Fi Hero that represents the dead father. All of this brought together by the support charters, a group of misfits filmmakers, a Garden Angle and some other people that are out of there small town minds. This weird story could only be brought to us by the Creator of "Napoleon Dynamite," Jared Hess. So if you had fun laughing at the dorks before then be prepared to get even dorkier. Again if you have never been to Utah or never picked up a Sci-Fi paper back this could not be for you. (Go out and get a good Sci-Fi novel it will change you life)

Great Sci-Fi Books

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Weezer Oct 31st, 09

After checking out the Halloween Parade some ghost and ghouls went to party's, bars, or just stocked the streets. Lucky for us Weezer was playing a show over at the Hammerstein Ballroom. Getting in just in time to see them crawl out on to the stage dressed like big bugs. They could not do the whole show in those costume, so they invited some even luckier fans up on stage to rip off the bug parts. As always it was a upbeat show with lots of hits and some new material. Weezer is a fun band to see on the 31st of October because of all the dancing animals, action hero's, and other funny get-ups. They had some opening acts, and did not take the stage to after nine o'clock, than they finished at eleven thirty. A short set for a Holiday, but a good one. They even did covers of Kids by Brooklyn's MGMT, and Poker Face by New York's Favorite lady, Lady Gaga. Check out the setlist on There you can find a video of the band in there bug costumes doing Hash Pipe.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame Show Oct. 30th, 09

Wow! The first show for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame's 25Th anniversary went till one thirty in the morning with big names acts and special guests. Now we are ready for more on this Friday in late October. Getting in on time tonight was almost too easy, but we take all that we can get right? Jerry Lee Lewis started the night off with "Great Balls of Fire." Last night he also was the first of many famous names to grace the stage. He did not leave the stage without kicking down his piano bench to show that even at 75 he is still "the killer." You know it's a special night when Aretha Franklin is on the bill. This Soul diva is still sounding great singing songs like "Baby, I Love You" and "Don't Play That Song." Annie Lennox came out to help on the classic "Chain of Fools." Then Aretha said she was contemplating moving back to New York, singing for us Sinatra's "New York, New York." Then a friend of hers and her sons, Lenny Kravitz was there to help out on "Think." And last but not least her hit "Respect" was one that had everyone singing along. When this concert was announced Eric Clapton was going to be at the event. He was unable to make it because of some health issues. So instead we get more Jeff Beck. He was just a guest last night but tonight he had a small band with a big sound. Playing a long set with "Drown in My Own Tears" "Freeway Boogie" and "Cause We've Ended as Lovers" with just his band. Also He had guest of his own. First was Sting looking a little shaggy with "People Get Ready." Then Buddy Guy came out looking great playing around with Beck on "Let Me Love You." These men are some of the worlds best Guitar players. Billy Gibbons another legendary rocker came out in black leather and did "Rough Boy" and "Foxy Lady." At the end of Becks reign on stage he came out with a tribute to the Beatles playing the words of "A Day in the Life" with his strings. Who would want to fallow that....How about playful Metal-Heads Metallica. They burst out on stage with "For Whom the Bell Tolls," "One," and "Turn the Page." After that trio of heavy hits they came out with some of the most interesting guests of the night. Lou Reed came out and did not only "Sweet Jane," but also out of nowhere came "White Light/ White Heat." This was a real treat and surprise for some fans at MSG. Then we learned you have to cheer loud for Ozzy Osbourne when he comes out and before he will leave the stage. It is worth the sore throats when you get his hits "Iron Man" and "Paranoid." Metallica seems to fit in with all these guests even Ray Davies who came out with a rockin' "You Really Got Me," and "All Day and All of the Night." At the end of "Enter Sandman" it was clear why Metallica was chosen for this show. The last band to get the spotlight was U2. Lots of guest on stage with U2 including Bruce Springsteen, Roy Bittan and Patti Smith tacking the time to do it right with "Because the Night." Yes, when done with the song Patti smiled and said "take two " playing the song a second time. The Black Eyed Peas came out to do a medley of Mysterious Ways"/"Where Is the Love"/"One." As U2 was entertaining on the front of the stage, Mick Jagger was dancing behind it. Then The legendary Stone Came out to do a hot "Gimme Shelter." Friday nights show ended with "Beautiful Day" over an hour earlier then the night before. Having both these shows in NYC was a beautiful way to celebrate the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame's silver anniversary.

Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame Show Oct. 29th, 09

Last week New York was the place every Rock 'n' Roller wished they could be. Those lucky enough to live here had a chance to see living legends on stage at the garden on Thursday and Friday nights. The 25Th anniversary of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame is what brought all the music stars into the Big Apple. This was some weekend, the line up was almost unbelievable. It was so difficult to find a ticket that getting to the garden early made no difference. But sometimes when you think its all over and your not getting in, something happens and your right up front and center. Missing most of the beginning of the show was sad because of the acts that already came and went on the stage including Crosby, Stills & Nash, Jerry Lee Lewis, Bonnie Raitt, James Taylor, Dion, and Little Anthony & the Imperials. Just barely missing Paul Simon sing some of his hits from the 70's and 80's. When Garfunkel came out it was like the 60's all over again. Their harmonies sounded sweet on songs like "The Sounds of Silence," "The Boxer," and "Bridge Over Troubled Water." Finishing their set with "Cecilia," an upbeat choice that had the whole room dancing. Then it was Stevie Wonder's turn to make the people dance. Unfortunately his set started with some tech problems. Wonder did not let that stop him, he just switched up his set a little. The kinks got worked out and Stevie played hits like "Uptight (Everything's Alright)," "For Once in My Life," and "Signed, Sealed, Delivered I'm Yours." Then he brought out his guests one by one starting with Smokey Robinson doing "The Tracks of My Tears". Then John Legend came out for two songs. One being Michel Jackson's "The Way You Make Me Feel." Wonder got a little chocked up on this tribute to the king of pop. It went from the king of pop to the king of the blues when B.B. King came out and did "The Thrill Is Gone." Then before bring out Sting, ("Higher Ground"/"Roxanne") and Jeff Beck, ("Superstition") Wonder reminded us that in the 70's, like now most of us are "living just enough for the city." What a high spirited performance from Wonder, one of the best. Then after a small break it was Bruce Springsteen's turn. The man from Jersey came with his own guest's and of course the E Street Band. Having fun in letting everyone know that the Yankees had just won game 2 of the world series with "10Th Avenue Freeze-Out." Springsteen's first guest was non other then the "Soul Man" Sam Moore. When John Fogerty Came out for three songs it brought to mind his show coming up at the Beacon. Will Springsteen show up there for a jam? Then Bruce put in a plug for people to vote Darlene Love into the hall of fame before he brought her out on "A Fine, Fine Boy," "Da Doo Ron Ron." Tom Morello was on and off stage at least twice during the set. A Set that went long when Billy Joel came out for hits like "You May Be Right," and "Only the Good Die Young." It would not be Billy Joel in New York without hearing "New York State of Mind." And then after Bruce's "Born To Run" the band left the stage, but even though it was well passed one in the morning there was still more to come. An all star "(Your Love Keeps Lifting Me) Higher and Higher" with Darlene Love, John Fogerty, Tom Morello, Billy Joel, Jackson Browne, Peter Wolf with Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band. What a night to be at the garden...and there is one more night to go.

Friday, October 30, 2009

The Australian Pink Floyd Show Oct 27th, 09

Last Tuesday night a cover band almost sold out the Hammerstein Ballroom. It was surprising to walk up and see a huge line outside for a tribute band, but once inside you can see why they are so popular. This is an impressive show with lasers, props, and a large display panel similar to "Mr. Screen." The Australian Pink Floyd not only look like Pink Floyd but sound incredibly close to the real thing. This year they are doing a greatest hits show with music from "Wish You Were Here," "Animals," "Dark Side of the Moon" and "The Wall." They were Spellbinding on songs like "Comfortably Numb" and "Hey You." This stage show was so elaborate they even brought out amazing inflatables. This show was a feast for all senses with the lights, sound, and feeling of Pink Floyd.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Art of the Samurai: Japanese Arms and Armor, 1156–1868 Metropolitan Museum of Art

In 1868 the Samurai culture was abolished, but for more then seven hundred years this culture flourished in Japan. Following the Bushidō, meaning "Way of the Warrior", these man were part of the military nobility of pre-industrial Japan. Now one can sign up for a 4-8 year hitch, but being a Samurai was not that kind of military service. The warrior looked forward to a glorious death in the service of a military leader or the emperor. This exhibit is made up of objects from public and private collections. Most of objects date from the rise of the samurai in the late Heian period, through the early modern Edo period. The focus in this exhibit is armor, swords and sword mountings. The swords and daggers are very impressive, but the equestrian equipment and surcoats are worth some extra time. The most eye opening pieces were of the archery equipment and firearms. At one point in time the Samurai was known as "the man with a bow." Also on display are other arts of the Samurai like banners, painted scrolls and screens depicting battles. Because of the age and delicate nature of these's item The Metropolitan Museum is bringing this exhibit out in waves. The first examples will be On view October 21–November 29, then the second wave will be On view December 8–January 10.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Type O Negative Oct. 22nd

This Thursday was a New York anomaly. The trains ran on time and without stopping. This made it easy to get to the Nokia in time for Dead Men Dreaming. This local band has a guitar duo that shreds, and a impressive front man. Then Seventh Void came out on stage with Kenny Hickey and Johnny Kelly from Type O doing double duty on guitar, and drums. Next was Destrophy from Iowa. They had a spread out drum kit with a double bass and at least seven different cymbals. As the night went on the room filled up and then out came Type O Negative. This Gothic metal band from Brooklyn love to joke around with their home town fans. Peter Steele's voice sets the right atmosphere for the music to follow. These melodic songs focus on Relationships, and love with a hint of dark humor. In 1993 the Band had a Platinum album with Bloody Kisses, the first album on Roadrunner Records to reach Gold. After that success the band have stayed on the billboard 200 with most efforts. With their wealth of material they have lots to fill sets with, showing this by starting with "Dead Again" and getting to "Love You To Death" by mid-set. Then ending with "World Coming Down" into "Christian Woman" amped a crowd ready for more. Having already played "Halloween in Heaven" the encore was "Black No. 1" the band's other Halloween song. It's is getting close to the end of October. What are you doing for the 31st? Check out the setlist at..

Friday, October 23, 2009

Where The Wild Things Are Directed by Spike Jonze

This film was adapted from the beloved book from all of our childhood. A book that had little to say and a lot to show for itself. This Movie not only changes the real part of the small boys life, it also over complicates the fantasy world into a sad almost scary place. The look of the monsters is amazing. They are as furry and strange as you saw them in the covers of the book by Maurice Sendak. With this short story one feels like inside your mind is a wonderful world where you can work through your problems. In this movie the land of the Wild Things is a world with more problems then the real world. The monsters sulk around only being happy for fleeting moments. Max seems sad most of the time, not the young explorer with smiles on his face in the book. The plot is stretched out and stuff just added in. This is not that bad of a movie, it looks great. But the feeling you come out with is nothing near what ones gets when reading this children's book from the '60's.

Book Then Movie: Where the Wild Things Are

This wonderful children's picture book is from the early '60's and is loved around the world. Written by Maurice Sendak it has sold 19 million copies. Maurice came up with the "Things" when at his family's home in Brooklyn. Using his aunts and uncles for the likeness and names of the monsters. This book is about the imagination of a little boy and how it helps him understand his emotions. With little text Maurice uses mostly pictures to tell the story line. In the book Max, the young boy, is sent to his room for acting up. From there his mind takes over and he goes on an adventure to the land of the Wild Things. A book not short on critical acclaim being held high right after its original release. Even then they new that the story has a balance of complex thinking and simplicity. Manohla Dargis noted that "there are different ways to read the wild things, and probably as many ways to ruin this delicate story of a solitary child liberated by his imagination." If you have not read this book go into a bookstore and read it through once or twice. Please glance at this children's book before you see this movie.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Bob Weir at the Manhattan Grand Ballroom Oct. 19th & 20th

Up above the Hammerstein is the beautiful Manhattan Grand Ballroom. This last Monday night they opened this little venue for a Bob Weir two-day run. After the first night you could tell this was not going to be a normal run of shows, even the Empire State Building was dressed up in Tie-dye. A trim fit Bobby came out on stage with his band Ratdog. The night was full of Grateful Dead tunes with only two Ratdog songs like "Ashes in Glass." The second night was not as smooth sailing. The President was speaking downstairs and this meant the streets were blocked, cops everywhere, and lots of confused hippies. Once inside the show one was not confused any-longer. Everyone had a tear in there eye when Bob played "Mission in the Rain." This is not all the G.D Happenings going on this week. The Historical Society is opening an exhibit next year deadicated to the boys. (The Grateful Dead: Now Playing at the New York Historical Society) Because of this Phil and Bobby where honored at a fundraiser on Wednesday. Thats not all! There are lots of chances to let out your inner flower child with three more shows Ratdog this weekend at the Becon Theater.