Sure it's raining, sure that sucks, but think of it as a way to have more life moments like these:
Fans of digital-heavy electronic music — often classified as "glitch" for its beats laden with error noises such as skipping, scratching, and hissing — should head to Get Freaky to hear Canadian duo Knight Riderz and local favorites the DirtyBird crew. Knight Riderz mixes glitch with instrumental hip-hop in mid-tempo tracks that build with kick drums and wobbly, low-frequently bass. Expect a diverse set of remixes — Knight Riderz has given the low-end treatment to everyone from hip-hop duo King Fantastic to Radiohead. San Francisco-based label DirtyBird fills its own room with its DJs Christian Martin, Worthy, Ardalan, and Nick Monaco, regulars at the infamous DirtyBird barbecues in Golden Gate Park that have been going strong for a decade. DirtyBird's sound takes the minimal techno that originated in Detroit and the UK and bumps up the booty-shaking with thumping bass lines, bounce, and breakbeat; unlike dubstep's trance builds and big drops, these beats stay consistent and danceable. Ambient, sonically cinematic producer Bluetech headlines Get Freaky at 1015 Folsom on Friday, Nov. 30. 10 p.m., $15, $20. — Whitney Phaneuf
Thirty Years Under the Influence
Jörg Rupf at St. George Spirits has changed the way we all drink. Coming to America during the "white wine spritzer world" of the 1980s, Rupf started St. George with one goal in mind — to make spirits that actually tasted like what they came from. Now, thirty years later, his craft distillery has not only expanded to produce single malt whiskeys, gins, and absinthe, it's also sparked a thriving industry of artisinal spirits. This Friday, come celebrate St. George's thirty year anniversary with a night of cocktails at their famous World War II-era airplane hanger in Alameda, and make sure to stare, glassy-eyed, at their giant shark statue. 7—10 p.m., $75. Ages 21 and up. St. George Spirits/Hangar One Vodka. StGeorges30th.EventBrite.com— Azeen Ghorayshi
Oakland Children's Holiday Parade
Take a kid’s baseline level of excitement about parades, jack it up another notch, and you’ve got the America’s Children’s Holiday Parade, happening this Saturday, Dec. 1 in Downtown Oakland. The parade will feature a veritable who’s who of cartoon and storybook favorites — from Clifford to Wild Thing to Strawberry Shortcake — as well as giant balloons of timeless holiday stars — including Rudolph, the Gingerbread Man, and Magnificent the Snowman. Musical accompaniment for all that walking includes an impressive list of local high school marching bands, as well as performances by Radio Disney star Amber Lily, pop singer Emme, and the Bieber-esque Jeremy Thurber. Come early — according to the Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce, over 100,000 people are expected to attend. 2 p.m., free. Americas-Holiday-Parade.com — A.G.
Mission Creek Oakland, the Oakland edition of the San Francisco arts festival that showcases local bands, will hold the second edition of its new monthly music series at The Uptown this Thursday, November 29 (9 p.m., $5). The lineup is a trio of synth and indie rock duos, with Oakland's Believe headlining, joined by Santa Rosa's Teenage Sweater and Oakland's LESSONS.
Because you've obviously already pored over our Best Albums of 2012 extravaganza, it should come as no surprise that whittling each of our lists down to ten was a task of Herculean intellectual fortitude, and a lot of great records were left out of the fun. Herewith, the also-rans, with streaming/download links where we could find them:
If you're still in a post-Thanksgiving malaise, we discovered some cool stuff to make your Monday brighter. Here's what our Express staff writers are currently obsessed with:
The best of the Record Store Day Black Friday releases is probably the Asobi Seksu/ Boris split 7". The bands — the former a delightful NY shoegaze outfit, the latter a kick-ass Japanese sludge/drone/experimental group — cover each other with the tracks "Neu Years" and "Farewell." Each reimagining has its own distinct flavor, but both remain faithful to the stubborn beauty and energy of the original. Fun Fact: Boris took its name from a song by Melvins, who, by the way, are signed to Emeryville's own Alternative Tentacles record label. — Lenika Cruz
Can’t stop listening to this YouTube mashup of LCD Soundsystem and Miles Davis. — Ellen Cushing
This Thanksgiving we should all be thankful we live in a place where there is SO MUCH FUN SHIT TO DO ALWAYS. Here are five things you can do with yourself this weekend:
The day after Thanksgiving no longer needs to send shivers down your spine — in Oakland, Black Friday is now wearing plaid. Put on your best flannel and visit over thirty Downtown Oakland shops for special discounts all day. Even better, collect stamps at each Plaid Friday store you visit and redeem them for extra-special deals at participating bars, restaurants, and cafes in the area. Shop local, eat local, and remember why holiday gift shopping doesn't need to be synonymous with hell. Visit PlaidFriday.com for a map of participating businesses and more details.
We're constantly on the lookout for cool stuff to share with readers, and there is always more than what we can fit in the Express in the form of Picks and Reviews. Here's what our staff writers like right now:
Oakland indie rockers Saything will get the Steve Albini production treatment on its new album, due in the spring, as reported by the Deli SF. Listen here to Saything's 2010 album Momentary Ens. — W.P.
This is not to make anyone start thinking about Thanksgiving pounds, but I love this Pilates YouTube channel called Blogilates. It’s run by a fairly young East Bay native (who now lives in San Francisco) named Cassey Ho — she’s pretty amazing and has totally BLOWN UP since I started following her a few years ago. But the best part is her videos are doable, fun, and 100 percent effective — she even has one called "Post-Thanksgiving Tune-Up" (it’s only like five minutes long). — Lenika Cruz
Right now I'm really digging the hachiya persimmons from Guru Ram Das Orchards stand at the Berkeley Farmers' Markets (Tuesdays and Saturdays). A ripe hachiya — skin blackened as though charred, flesh soft as jelly — is better than candy, and one of the very best parts of fall. Slice in half and eat, very carefully, with a spoon. — Luke Tsai
Indie-pop producer Toro Y Moi, aka Chaz Bundick, has said his recent move to Berkeley inspired his forthcoming album, Anything in Return. Hear for yourself at his weekend-long listening party and art show at Public Works, running three consecutive nights starting tonight, Friday November 16.
On display all weekend will be thirteen original drawings by Bundick, created to correspond with a specific song off the new album, which will be playing on nearby headphones. If Bundick's DJ set, Sunday from 5-11 p.m., is anything like his recent performance at Treasure Island Music Festival, expect lots of disco and funk. The album's out January 22; in the meantime, here's a sneak peak:
Just like that — it's Friday! Here's what you should check out this weekend:
Co-Launch Party for Beeswax and Monday Night Magazines
For all the talk of print dying, 'zines, lit mags, and various other publications of the decidedly low-budget, low-gloss, underground and indie persuasion aren't just hanging on — they're thriving. To wit, on Friday, Nov. 16, not one but two new local magazines celebrate their new issues at Diesel: Monday Night, a long-running journal of poetry and prose; and Beeswax, an Oakland-based multimedia mag that employs such delightfully old-school flights of design fancy as letterpress covers and hand-stitched spines. Both will be represented by a bevy of high-profile local talent — Monday Night by writer-artist Sean Craven and poet Valerie Witte, and Beeswax by novelist Hugh Behm-Steinberg and poet Diana Aehegma — and are certain to double-handedly restore your faith in the power of ink on paper. 7 p.m., free. 510-653-9965 or DieselBookstore.com — Ellen Cushing
Late Night Little Bites
Out late? Can't face heading home hungry? Bocanova has instituted a brand-new "Late Nite Boca Bite" menu, featuring bocaditos ("little bites") at happy-hour prices served from 9 p.m. until 10:30 p.m. every Thursday through Saturday. Bocaditos include yuca-and-cheese fritters, fried plantains with cilantro aioli, Dungeness crab deviled eggs with chipotle aioli, taco-del-día with pickled cabbage, and pork ribs with guava-barbecue sauce. Specially priced cocktails, wine, and beer wash it all down. $1.50 and up. 510-444-1233 or Bocanova.com — Anneli Rufus
2 x 2 Solos: Cybele Lyle and Wafaa Yasin
For the second installment of its 2 x 2 Solos series, Pro Arts Gallery lends its space to Cybele Lyle and Wafaa Yasin, both of who are concerned with what could be called "shifting spaces." This is the title of Lyle's work, an installation of angular platforms protruding from the gallery wall, vaguely resembling an open book. The work is unassuming, even uninteresting, in and of itself, but an accompanying book, filled with schematic iterations of the sculpture spliced with images of natural terrain, reveals an unexpected depth in its ambitions. For Yasin, meanwhile, the shifting space is simultaneously the Israeli/Palestinian border (Yasin was born in Galilee) and her own body. In one video work, she fashions herself into a human yacht and sets sail. In another, civil engineers discuss logistics pertaining to hillside housing developments, using the artist's pregnant belly for model terrain. 2 x 2 Solos: Cybele Lyle and Wafaa Yasin run through November 30 at Pro Arts Gallery. 510-763-4361 or ProArtsGallery.org — Alex Bigman
How many times did you cry before/on/after election night? Whether you've shed tears of joy or dejection, put the crying behind you because it's all over! To make things even better, it's the weekend, and here are the best things you can do with yourself this gloriously unpolitical Friday through Sunday:
17th Annual Crush Festival
Set for Sunday, Nov. 11, at the Berkeley Marina DoubleTree, the Berkeley Chamber of Commerce's seventeenth-annual Crush Festival celebrates local gourmet food and wine. This year's theme is "Qué Syrah, Syrah," with more than two dozen participants including Fenestra Winery, Pyramid Alehouse, Rosenblum Cellars, Skates on the Bay, Cafe V, Whole Foods Market, the Terrace Room, and more. Each guest gets a free wine glass and party tray. 2 p.m., $50. 510-549-7000 or BerkeleyCrushFest.com — Anneli Rufus
As if artist and event organizer Sarah Sexton (aka Ssquar’d) of local production company Oaktown Indie Mayhem didn’t have her hands full with projects already, from the annual 48-Hour Film Festival to the monthly X-Over Music Series at Actual Cafe, she’s now hosting a monthly clothing swap. Held in the yard at Classic Cars West on every first Saturday of the month, THREADS affords ladies and gents alike an opportunity to trade in their tired garments for duds discarded by others. Aside from garment bartering, each event also features live music, local craft beer, and Rosamunde sausages for sale. And remember: Just as one man’s trash is another’s treasure, one woman’s worn-out cardigan is another’s flashy new sweater. 2-6 p.m., free. 510-302-5423 or OaktownIndieMayhem.com
Woody Guthrie's American Song
How better to celebrate the life of Woody Guthrie than through his own music? UC Berkeley Theater Department chair Peter Glazer first premiered Woody Guthrie's American Song, his acclaimed musical telling Guthrie's life story, in 1989 — but the show returns to Cal, for a two-week run beginning on Friday, Nov. 9 . Featuring the music and writings of the Oklahoma-born folk hero, the story follows Guthrie on his two-decade journey through America, witnessing the Great Depression, the Dust Bowl, and World War II. Through November 18.Thu.-Sat. 8 p.m., Sun. 2 p.m.; $15 general admission, $10 for UCB students. 510-642-8827 or TDPS.Berkeley.edu — A.G.
Pike Long remembers what it was like to be underage, queer, and searching for something fun to do. "When I was a teen, I was a raver," said Long, coordinator for the San Francisco-based non-profit Health Initiatives for Youth. "Back then, all my friends were using drugs and selling drugs. I want people to feel like there is someplace to go that offers a creative outlet, not just 'let's get high and have sex.' " Now Long, with the help of local non-profit Health Initiatives For Youth, is hoping to create an alternative to house parties with a new drop-in center for queer and trans youth: QTY Treehouse (1924 Franklin St., Oakland), which opens tomorrow, Friday, November 9, with a kick-off party at 6:00 p.m.