November 26, 2014

This Weekend: Parade and Punk and Pete and Pete




>>> On Black Friday morning, as soon as they open at 11 AM, Johnny Brenda’s will begin serving up all the nice IPAs they’ve kept stored away for the Dogfish Head Barroom Blitz.

>>> On Black Friday Evening at Johnny Brenda’s, Polaris, the greats best known for their theme song to The Adventures of Pete & Pete, will appear with Radiator Hospital.

>>> The Blind Shake are the kind of earsplitting riffmasters that sound like every genre and no genre at once, but if we were to create one for them, we’d call it “rage surf” check them out with Le Yikes Surf Club at Underground Arts Black Box.

>>> Fourth Friday at 4th and South streets, is not the same as First Friday, but it’s a chronological ranking, not a hierarchical one. This one should be just as good if not better.

>>> And there will be more art at South Fellini’s Black Light Friday Art Show at Tattooed Mom.

>>> We’d never talk shit on anyone for going to a Weezer Tribute show at Boot & Saddle without secretly retiring to our rooms and listening to The Blue Album all the way through afterward.

>>> We’re going to have to reproduce John Sharkey III‘s copy for this one here, because nothing else we could come up with would measure up: “DARK BLUE & The Gotobeds. This Friday at Kung Fu Necktie, after the Cock Sparrer Official show. 11pm. Five Bucks. Fuck The System.”


>>> Mt. Billions are a trio of shoegazing stoners with enough ingenuity and focus to afford the category of “shoegazing stoners” a new dignity. Check them out with Crimson Wave, Bike Crash and Youth In Bloom at PhilaMOCA.

>>> If after spending an entire day eating more than you’ve eaten in forever for some reason puts you in the mood to go out the next night and dance off the pounds you put on, then by all means get out for MSTRKRFT At Dolphin Tavern.

>>> The West Philadelphia Orchestra and Black Masala will each be playing two sets at Johnny Brenda’s, where, yeah, you could easily just spend you’re entire weekend if you wanted to.


>>> Close out the weekend with a night of grrrl rioting from Sherman Whips, Thelma and the Sleaze, The Pretty Greens, Mike Writes and The Epperson Airplanes at Kung Fu Necktie.

>>> Or, if you’d prefer, well, there’s always Slayer.

Thanksgiving Eve Picks: The Biggest Drinking Night Of The Year? That’s Up To You

20760lggdmndngtbbWe’re not sure where the idea originated that Thanksgiving Eve is “the biggest party night of the year,” but that’s been the line everyone’s been talking now since forever. In any case, the roster of booze-stocked events is appropriately stacked. Here are but a few of them:

>>> Just for the sake of the pun in the name we’re going to link out to this Philly2Night and party at King’s Oak called “All About That Baste.” Under no circumstances are we saying you should go to this, just… points for the name.

>>> Another great name (and this one, we would actually go to): Jive Turkey at the Trestle Inn. It’s a funk nite, get it?

>>> Also quality: DJ Robert Drake does his ’80s thing at The Dolphin. Sadly, this has no punny name, so let’s donate one: “Eddie Gizzard!”

>>> Sentimental favorite: Rock Tits is back at the P.O.P.E. for the first time in forever with Dave P and Ryan Grotz spinning all Grunge.

>>> And nothing says “Homecoming” like “It’s The Year 1996″ at Johnny Brenda’s. This is a party where nothing but records released in 1996 will be played. In my mind, I am already there.

>>> #ThanksgivingJawn at Trilogy on Spring Garden with Aktive, Mike Nyce, Sonny James and Worldtown Soundsystem Live will feature hip hop and R&B and funk and soul and all of that good shit from 10PM to 3:30AM, live art by Serena Saunders, Ran Art and others, and probably a very solid crowd. $10 cover until it bumps up to $15 at 11:30, but who’s counting?

>>> The ONE NIGHT ONLY Thanksgiving Eve Karaoke Party at Bridget Foy’s, held partly in celebration of Tina Turner’s birthday, is free after a one drink minimum, but it won’t take long to fill that place up, so get there early if you need to belt one out before you loosen your belt tomorrow.

>>> Another anti-pick but if there’s anything that’s definitively not our bag this Thanksgiving Eve it is the fucking Xfinity Live! Philadelphia Thanks Groovin’ Eve party which we imagine will involve little more than an imperious, unsmiling DJ barking harsh orders that everyone dance in fascistic uniformity.

>>> What looks to be the only good show this Thanksgiving Eve is Wilmington/Philly’s Spinto Band side project Teen Men with prog annihilators Needle Points and Purples at Boot & Saddle, so if drinking and dancing’s not your thing, there is the healthy alternative drinking and head-bobbing.

It’s The Day Before Thanksgiving And Honestly We Don’t Feel Like Dealing With Any Of This Shit


We’re about to post all of the party picks and it’d be stupid to deal with any mayor’s race stuff or anything else really today, so let’s just dump these links here since they’ll be stale on Monday (that’s right, we’re not posting on Friday, SUCK IT, CAPITALISM) and neither you nor I care anyway so blah blah blah:

· Nobody wants to pay the hefty price of cab medallion because of both Uber and the Soviet strongarm tactics of the Philadelphia Parking Authority because why the fuck would you? But in an odd turn of events, the PPA has blinked and lowered the price! SATAN, YOUR KINGDOM MUST COME DOWN.

· These people are suing the Taney Dragons because dude got hit with a ball. Get the fuck outta here with that shit, son.

· Why is Al Pacino the special guest at the Philadelphia Orchestra’s annual Academy Ball? Oh wait, I know why!


[Image: DrunkJCrew]


And Speaking Of Boycotting Black Friday In Philly…

There is indeed a protest action scheduled:

Black Friday Block Party for Fair Wages!

November 28, 2014• 9:00 AM
WalMart-Pennsport• 1675 S. Christopher Columbus Blvd, Philadelphia, PA 19148

But as we were saying below, have you been to that Wal-Mart? If boycotting it still means going anywhere near it, well, no. No.

Here’s The Good (And Bad) News About #FergusonPHL’s List Of Demands

During the protest last night, Daily News crime reporter Vinny Vella tweeted out this list obtained from organizers:

And while the stuff on top — a wish list for change in both Ferguson, MO as well as at the national level — will be a ponderous journey indeed, allow us for a second to consider the “Suggest for Philly Demands” as they stand not even 24 hours later.

1. Those dudes got free!

2. Honestly, we don’t see the case of Frank McQueen going anywhere. Chester.

3. If they mean “Free Mumia Abu-Jamal,” well, tough shit there, too, guys, BUT, if they mean for us as a people to chant down the so-called Revictimization Act, well, here’s the good news: Even Byko thinks this thing is a pile of horse shit. We’d be surprised if this ever held up.

4. Since the early 1990s — in the aftermath of the Rodney King riots in L.A., actually — the Philadelphia Bar Association has supported a Citizen Review Board to keep watch on grievances between cops and Philadelphians. And CRB’s are indeed fairly common elsewhere. If enough pressure was applied on candidates in the upcoming 2015 mayoral and City Council elections, it’s not inconceivable that this could become both a campaign issue and action item in the next few years.

5. Body cams? Hey, the Philly force is already on the case!

6. If you have ever been to the Delaware Avenue Wal-Mart/Target/Ikea on any Friday, much less Black Friday, we really don’t think sitting out Black Friday in Philadelphia is ever gonna be a tough sell.


Here’s Audio Of Philly Police Instructing Other Philly Police To Let #FergusonPHL Actually, You Know, Exercise Their 1st Amendment Rights

We love this. We love this a lot. But it also feels illustrative of something we’ve suspected for a long time: That the whole deal with the Philly police is that it’s always one half of the force yelling at the other half to just, like, c’mon, be decent. In any case, last night, it worked. Pull up #FergusonPHL to see how massive peaceful protest engaged by a truly diverse array of Philadelphians resulted in the emotional release of two jailed protesters from the night before and, ultimately, a pizza party in Rittenhouse Square. Sometimes, Philadelphia, we could kiss you right on the mouth. [h/t @AKKuhn]

November 25, 2014

This Evening: Grrrrrrrrrr Power

>>> We just desk-pogo’d hard to all three of these bands playing at Bourbon & Branch tonight, but it’s Philly’s Blowdryer that really conjured the Riot Grrl spell on us. Is it music for these times? We feel that it may be music for these times.

>>> Speaking of, at the risk of sounding like a broken record, keep an eye on #FergusonPHL as you move about the city, whether you’re protesting or not. Be safe and peaceful, Philly.

Crowds Already Gathering At City Hall For Day 2 Of #FergusonPHL Protests

Keep an eye on #FergusonPHL for updates.

Center City To Get New Small Room Music Venue

Brü owner Teddy Sourias stands in what will soon be U-Bahn.

It’s not much to look at now, but in about a month or two, Philly will get a new small room for live local music called U-Bahn. And it’s coming in a good time; with the trend of new music venues opening in Philly that cater to an audience span of 200-600 over the last few years, there’s been little attention paid to new spaces that grow bands — and with the lone exception of Milkboy, even less so in Center City. With a maximum capacity of 100, U-Bahn could fill a niche in tandem with smaller rooms like Milkboy and Bourbon & Branch in NoLibs. Housed in the basement space below the likewise German-themed Brü Craft & Wurst at 1320 Chestnut Street, U-Bahn will have a “German subway” theme, feature cheeseboards and such, 18 taps, and the rest of it. But what was most notable to us was the music complement, which will add to an already organically expanding live music circuit (that includes Fergie’s and Time and Chris’s Jazz) in the general Midtown Village vicinity:

Approximately 15 foot stage with state-of-the-art sound system that will be stomping ground for established and local emerging talent. Look for regular list of talent on bi-weekly and monthly basis, plus one-time performances. Enjoy everything from indie rock, bluegrass, jazz, latin music, reggae, DJs and cover bands. Goal is to showcase new talent that will quickly outgrow U-Bahn space and become the region’s next big thing.

No word on bookings just yet; U-Bahn is set to open mid-December to early January.

Dept. Of What He Said: C’Mon, Nutter & Williams, Philly Is Ferguson, Too

Over at City Paper, Daniel Denvir echoes a bit of what we were saying earlier in our #FergusonPHL round-up:

“I am perplexed and astounded that in this case, the prosecutor certainly took as long as he wanted to explain everything (and) I did not hear any explanation, or more importantly a justification, for why that young man was shot,” he said, according to the Associated Press.

It was a remarkable sentiment coming from a mayor who has shown little interest — arguably none — in substantive reforms to his own city’s criminal-justice system.

That Denvir is couching this all his new “liberal Democrat”-trolling vibe is something we’ll forgive for now, as he makes valuable points about both the Mayor and D.A. are kind of full of it with their Ferguson chest-thumping.

Noontime Nuggetz: Cruisr, “All Over”

Cruisr are back with a video that offers such rare delights as Ice Cube transforming into the Tin Man, Beatrix Kiddo ducking a punch from Rocky, and pretty much every Kubrick film somehow rendered animated. This thing’ll probably be sourcing gifs for the next year. Also, the song is, yeah, damn catchy.

We Can Respond To Chris Satullo’s Plea To Be Nicer To People From The Suburbs With One Simple Image

Resident WHYY mansplainer Chris Satullo took to the airwaves earlier this week with this curious, self-congratulatory thing about how he’s better than his old racist neighbors because he used to take his kids to the Thanksgiving Day Parade and point out the poors along the R5 route. Um, okay, dude. His nut graf, though, is a plea for tenderness, from city dwellers to their much- (and by our count, fairly-) maligned suburban counterparts.

Just as I long struggled to get fellow suburbanites to see the city as it really is, not merely the dystopian nightmare of TV news, I now have a wish for my fellow Philadelphians: That someday they might adopt a more diplomatic, generous and effective attitude towards their fellow Pennsylvanians in the ‘burbs and beyond,

Their default attytood can be summed up thusly: “Listen, you racist hicks, send us more money. Now. Or we’ll sue you.” It’s marvelous to behold how often the city’s politicians and activists adopt that tack, then are bewildered and indignant when it doesn’t work.

Tell you what, Chris. We’ll all start being nice to your dear, spat-upon suburban innocents when we can go out on Friday nights in the city not fully expecting to be reminded of this crew:


Is it a deal, bro?

This Moment In Cosby: Temple Alumni & Students Petition School To Cut Ties

Take a look here.

Archbishop Chaput Can’t Wait For WMF To Boost Archdiocese’s Depleted Morale

Archbishop Charles J. Chaput is getting excited about the World Meeting of Families, for many reasons obvious and not, but according to the comments he just made to, he’s most excited about the “rebirth of the archdiocese” after a neverending cascade of sexual abuse scandals that put them “in difficult situations in terms of morale and finances.” In the face of all of these PR concerns that crippled the archdiocese’s reputation and its resources, Chaput was apparently most worried about being able to get enough money together to support the 2015 WMF and not, you know, addressing the concern of rampant sexual abuse in the churches.

Now, however, he’s not worried about that anymore. The first weekend of events including a “Festival of Families” on Benjamin Franklin Parkway and a mass on the steps of the Art Museum from Pope Francis himself, are expected to draw up to two million visitors. Despite all of his talk about strengthening the archdiocese, though, Chaput insists that the WMF will “welcome everybody” despite its having a “Catholic dimension.” What this means exactly still remains to be seen.

Winners And Losers, #FergusonPHL Edition

Make no mistake: If we’re going to talk winners and losers about the grand jury decision that came out of Ferguson last night (a statistical oddity bordering on the utterly insane) and the chaos that erupted in its wake, it is quite clear that America lost. Equality lost, intelligent debate lost, the relationship between police and both minorities and the young continued to lose, and things we don’t even yet know all lost. Fail marks all around, America. But as protests played out coast to coast, here in Philly, #FergusonPHL, the protest and hashtag alike, was particularly instructive. And on a night of overwhelming negatives, the protest itself felt like a net positive in terms of how Philly reacted — both its populace and its power structure. So let’s take a look at last night’s winners and losers.



This map details very well the route of last night’s protest, which gathered steam from the moment the grand jury decision was announced, and eventually looped a whole swath of the Center City grid. As the night went on, clergy groups marched alongside social justice groups, and covered a lot more ground than probably anyone would have thought at the outset. It was impossible to be anywhere between South Street and Northern Liberties and Rittenhouse last night and not be made aware of what was going on. And yes, the whole getting-onto-I-95 thing was dangerous (and also apparently more possible than anyone knew), but we couldn’t really blame the group — registering the outrage shared here in Philly over Ferguson, as well as its implications nationally, was the message, and the Philly contingent never lost sight of that.

The Philadelphia Police

Look, this is Philly, and this thing could have gone wrong in one hundred different ways. Your Philly police force saw to it that that didn’t happen, and for that, they deserve kudos.

Daily News and Inky Reporters, and Yep, The Community College Newspaper

If you were following the #FergusonPHL hashtag last night (and if you haven’t, do go back and take a look), it was the DN and Inky reporters — and, notably, The Vanguard, the student newspaper of Community College of Philadelphia — who consistently had the most solid, clear-headed information. And in a situation like this, that is the thing of the most value — both for the protestors on the ground and everyone else. Their efforts can’t be underestimated in keeping the Philly protest now a national model for each of us.


Michael Nutter and The Philadelphia Police

Because there it is, the elephant in the room: Philadelphia is Ferguson, too. For as well-behaved as Philly cops were last night, it’s important to remember that the protesters here were not merely reacting in empathy; currently, Philly seems to have a police department that is fully at odds with itself. Even as our police chief endeavors to actually put those body cams on police that is now the Brown family’s lone wish, deep, howling police corruption still rocks the city on a far too regular basis. Nutter could have said something about this last night, about how Philadelphia is broken the way that Ferguson is broken, too, but he chose not to. What could have been a powerful moment of speaking truth to power became just another moment of power speaking power to power: Nutter’s comments felt like they were more for Nutter than for anyone else.

Philly Broadcast Media

But you wouldn’t have known that if you were watching the local network affiliates last night. Most of them didn’t carry Nutter’s address live, and even when Fox 29 did, they got bored after a while and cut back to TMZ. Also notable: Weak tweet updates on the protest from these guys as it was happening.

Chris Stigall

This fucking cock-n-balls from WPHT The Big Talker wouldn’t shut the fuck up all night. Oh well. It’s his America we all raged against last night in the first place.

Dental Biochip Terrorism, The Murder Of Wilt Chamberlain, And Other Conspiracy Theories Of Richard Mills

This is as much as we’ve been able to find so far, but it seems like Richard Mills, “Phila, PA Fighting Irish,” who may be a world-class conspiracy theorist and may be a robot, is the man behind numerous twitter accounts including Richard Mills (@JUSTICEFORMILLS), Richard Mills (@EaglesCoverUp) and Wilt Chamberlain (@Justice4WiltC). The twitter accounts link respectively to the Pinterest accounts Richard Mills Warns U.S.A., Richard Mills @EaglesCoverUp, and Richard Mills Warns World!. The Pinterest accounts are emblazoned with banner quotes like “SAVE WORLD FROM BIOCHIP TERRORISM AND CLONING!” and “Richard Mills Is A Kennedy Relative, His Ancestor Robert Morris.” The feeds of the Twitter and Pinterest accounts are full of hashtags pertaining to the Kennedy Assassination and the scourge of Dental Biochip Terrorism. Mills is also active on Facebook.

When a truthseeking mission gets to this level of bananas, it always turns into a bottomless rabbit hole. The more you look, the more there is too look for. But once we found a tweet with retweets from Penn Cloning Exposed, Richard Mills, Richard Mills, RICHARD MILLS, Richard Mills, and Wilt Chamberlain, we knew we had to stop. Keep fighting the good fight, Richard Mills.

November 24, 2014

Right Now In The Sticks: The People Of Reading, PA Rally Against Busted-Ass, Fugly Xmas Tree

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And like that, our one true Christmas wish is born: Will someone tell the folks who did the Autotune The News “Backin’ Up” song about this? Because I mean come ON.

This Evening: Going, Going, Barragán

>>> Once upon a time, Blonde Redhead were just another New York band with a weird name and a sound that most shrugged off as pretentious and reaching. Over the past two decades, however, they’ve made the not-to-be-understated leap from boho curiosities to tenured ambassadors from the art world to the pop world and vice versa. With a signature style that incorporates the hardest and softest of influences, the noise-rockers and the dream-poppers, the sounds that marked the opposite far edges of the listenable spectrum in the eighties and nineties, the band are an institution for anyone interested in the continuing tradition of weirdo cool. Their new album, Barragán, sounds more than any in recent years like a celebration of all of the music that contributed to the development of this now canonized sound and style. Seeing them tonight at Union Transfer with People Get Ready will be an education in both the then and the now.

>>> Elsewhere: Fresh from a successful performance on Late Night With Seth Myers, minimalist dance-pop super-groovers St. Lucia will be blissing the hell out of the Theatre of Living Arts with The Knocks and HAERTS.

Here Is Your Christmas Radio, Philadelphia


Sometime after we were looking last and before we were looking just now, Philadelphia, like Wildwood Crest, NJ before it, flipped dimensions and once again became a place that has 24/7 Christmas radio until… until when? Until they say it’s over, that’s when. MoreFM (formerly B101) has flipped formats and so too has WXPN’s Xponential radio Internet stream, once again dubbed “Jingle Jams.” This, of course, is to say nothing of those other Philly Xmas radio institutions: what will be the 26th (!!!) annual installment of Jon Solomon’s 25-hour holiday radio marathon on WPRB, and WXPN’s “The Night Before Christmas” from midnight to midnight on Wednesday, December 24th with host Robert Drake. So stack up those Wawa Gobblers and Tastykake Pumpkin Pies and Chocolaty Stars: It’s time to eat your feelings to the cool, cool sounds of The Waitresses.

And Then There Were Three: Philly Is Now One Of Three Finalists For The 2016 Democratic National Convention

Well, whaddya know: Even with the Darrell Clarke and the Johnny Doc and the Bob Brady, they’re still interested! It must have been the Pat’s. A final call will be made sometime after the holidays.