Our Weekly Picks: February 13-19, 2013
Dirty Looks Road Show
How Do I Look? asks a seminal weighty tome addressing queer film and video theory from 1991. "Dirty!" I always wanted to shout back to my dusty bookshelf when it caught my eye. Well, hey — 22 years later along comes NYC's Dirty Looks collective, which showcases queer experimental film and video with startling freshness. The edgy gems on offer in its two-night visit to SF may have slipped through your Youtube crack. Thu/14's "Yesterday Once More" at SFMOMA, www.sfmoma.org, gives you contemporary coolness from Matt Wolf, Zachary Drucker, Mariah Garnett, and Chris E. Vargas. Then check out Fri/15's "Pickle Surprise! The Eyes of Tom Rubnitz" at Artists Television Access, www.atasite.org, which has me jumping for joy — this '80s underground clubkid, filmmaker, and musician caught the spirit of one of our civilizations most vividly glorious times before he died of AIDS. Legendary drag queens and trashy foodstuffs galore! (Marke B.)
"Yesterday Once More": Thu/14, 7-9pm, $10
Phyllis Watts Theater, SF MOMA
151 Third St., SF
"Pickle Surprise": Fri/15, 8pm, $6
992 Valencia, SF
As the name subtlety implies, this event will showcase humor. Hosted by the sardonic upstart comic Cameron Vannini, this event, billed as a standup show for comics and by comics, will be the first ever comedic event at the nascent Chapel, signaling more standup shows in its future. Going up to bat tonight will be an all-local slate featuring Kevin O'Shea, Clare O'Kane, Jules Posner, Sean Keane, Brendan Lynch, and Kevin Camia. O'Shea, O'Kane, Posner, Keane, and Vannini will all be coming fresh off recent gigs at Sketchfest. The blunt and jabbing Camia, whose record Kindness was voted among the top 10 best comedy albums on iTunes in 2010, is a stalwart of the local scene and recently has been rumored to be making "the move" down to LA. A night like this should be the perfect respite for those still pining for Sketchfest. (George McIntire)
777 Valencia, SF
Remember rock'n'roll? You know, that dynamic and gritty music before the age of synthesizers? The Stone Foxes show at the New Parish might jog your memory. Launching into experimentation from strong roots in blues, the band plays a range from the catchy interpretation of Edgar Allen Poe's gothic, "The Tell-Tale Heart," ("Everybody Knows") to the elegy in minor, "Battles, Blades and Bones," which repeats, "We need someone to sing/'Cause we've turned everything/To battles, blades, and bones." In their third album, Little Fires (which came out Feb. 12), collaboration with Girls' producer Doug Boehm proves that polish doesn't mean sterility, that good production doesn't mean overproduction, and that good old rock'n'roll lives on. (Laura Kerry)
With Mahgeetah, Black Cobra Vipers
579 18th St., Oakl.
"The Algorithm of Love"
Sam Yagan might be as qualified as anyone to decipher the formula for love. Yagan and his three Harvard classmates founded the online dating site OKCupid as a spin off from the Spark Notes study guides they created at the turn of the millennium. Since then, Internet matchmaking has become a booming business, and Yagan and Co. capitalized in 2011 by selling OKCupid to rival Match.com. Yagan, now Match.com's CEO, uses data from 8 million users to quantify the unquantifiable, to dissect what exactly goes into fuzzy feelings and unexplainable attractions. Bay Area matchmaker Joy Nordenstrom and SFGate blogger Beth Spotswood will be on hand to help translate the love equation. (Kevin Lee)
595 Market, SF
The Wooster Group/New York City Players: Early Plays
However it pans out as a performance, this has to be one of the theatrical events of the year: A rare Bay Area appearance by the famed Wooster Group in collaboration with another NY-based contemporary experimental theater company of renown, Richard Maxwell's New York City Players. Maxwell directs members of both companies in a trio of "Early Plays" by Eugene O'Neill —three one-acts also known as the Glencairn plays, after the ship on which work the men of Moon of the Caribbees, Bound East for Cardiff, and The Long Voyage Home. Each unfolds in the director's emblematic affectless style, which seeks out the unfamiliar beneath layers of received theatricality and, in the case of these young yet also experimental plays, lingering melodrama. (Robert Avila)
Through Sat/16, 8pm, $20–$30 ($10 Thu/14)
Yerba Buena Center for the Arts
750 Folsom, SF
Feed Me with Teeth
Britain's Jon Gooch has many alter egos. He's a producer and a DJ, he's Spor and he's Feed Me. No matter what the role or the moniker, however, Gooch remains constant and consistent in his creation of unrelentingly catchy electro and yes, dubstep. Teeth, Gooch's newest creation, is the element that pushes Feed Me's act over the line from just another EDM act and into the realm of a truly spectacular performance that's going to keep you talking about it for quite a while. The Teeth are comprised of 20 jagged LED screens that create a huge, crooked grin that flashes and pulses in sync with Feed Me's expert mixing. Dancing shoes required, party provided. (Haley Zaremba)
With Mord Fustang
1300 Van Ness, SF
Body Cartography: Symptom
Last time Olive Bieringa and Otto Ramstad's Body Cartography Project performed locally downtown, it was difficult to tell the dancers apart from the mingling pedestrians. Shortly after that the company left its home turf of SF for greener pastures, Minneapolis, as it turned out. From there Body Cartography has taken its expanded investigations of physicality — both geographically and the mediums within which it works — around the globe. For its return engagement as part of CounterPULSE's Queer Series (running through March), Body Cartography is bringing a relatively small group, Ramstad with sibling Emmett. One is a dancer, the other a visual artist. They look very much alike; they are even dressed alike. They have called what they do Symptom, a work they say is "sculpture, drawing, movement and text." (Rita Felciano)
Also Feb. 15-17
1310 Mission, SF
"Engulfing the Elusory"
Here are some of the themes that the sculptures of Rachel Mica Weiss undertake: human vulnerability, large-scale disasters, self-inflicted limitations. Does an image come to mind? I'm guessing that it does not resemble Weiss's black net installations. But when you see the twisted rope, the rough stones, and the tarnished wood that comprise Weiss's previous work, idea and object click. The artist condenses so much conceptual work into physical pieces of inexplicable poignancy. Let's throw a few more themes in: boundaries, environmental change, cultural constructs. All of it will be on view in the windows of the Arts Commission Gallery. (Kerry)
Through April 27
SF Arts Commission Gallery
401 Van Ness, SF
Every Time I Die
The metal life isn't for everyone. Constant touring, an over-crowded industry, and headbang whiplash causes many bands to give up their brutal dream early into their career. Buffalo, NY's Every Time I Die isn't one of those bands. ETID has been churning out its distinctive Southern-tinged hardcore since 1998. Six studio albums, a billion bassists, and a tour with Steve-O later, the Buckley brothers are still going strong. Incredibly, their high-energy live show has shown no signs of fatigue in well over a decade, and their reputation for intensity continues to be well-earned. Come for the snarky lyrics and clever songwriting, stay for the circle pit. (Zaremba)
With the Acacia Strain, Vanna, Hundreth, No Bragging Rights
Oakland Metro Operahouse
630 Third St, Oakl.
"Hip-Hop Beyond Gender"
My first compact disc was Salt 'N Pepa's masterful ode to minding one's business, safe sex, and superlative/godawful male companions, 1993's Very Necessary. Imagine my confusion, then, upon my discovery that the rest of the hip-hop world was hardly as empowering for females as that power-sass had led me to believe. But hip-hop has always been a site of subversion, where societal rules are flipped, and so it makes perfect since that some day, its lovers would take back the form from the silly misogynists on the Billboard charts. So, yay: tonight, nu-world griots Aya De Leon, Raquel Gutierrez, Chinaka Hodge, Carrie Leilam Love, Dawn Robinson, and Kity Yan examine hip-hop's queer-feminist revolutionary potential through spoken word. It's the first of five La Peña events in 2013 focused on breaking down hip-hop's gender barriers. (Caitlin Donohue)
La Peña Cultural Center
3105 Shattuck, Berk.
Ott and the All-Seeing I
If you're into dub, electronic, Middle Eastern, and psychedelic sounds, you must meet Ott. Ott — a veteran electronic British musician-producer who has worked with big names like Sinéad O'Connor, Brian Eno, and Simon Posford (Shpongle) — makes rich, ambient, trancey electronic dub jams under the moniker Ott and the All-Seeing I. "Owl Stretching Time," one of the band's signature tracks, could just as easily be the anthem to a Jamaican surf trip as the soundtrack to a night out in Berlin. Ott handles electronics alongside Naked Nick (guitars, synths, percussion), bassist Chris Barker, and drummer Matt White. (Mia Sullivan)
With KiloWatts, Desert Dwellers, Outersect
1015 Folsom, SF
Buke and Gase
Before we begin, let's establish a few definitions. Buke: an altered six-string baritone banjo. Gase: a blend of a guitar and bass. Surely, a band that carries its own invented glossary approaches music differently. Arone Dyer and Aron Sanchez, the duo that with its homemade instruments manages to sound more like an offbeat orchestra, alters language, genre, and the overall assumptions of the listener. The driving cacophony in the recently released General Dome shouldn't make sense. Somehow, though, with Dyer's expressive singing, the building repetition of sounds, and the band's confidence in its own inventiveness, it all comes together. See Dyer and Sanchez create their own rules at Café Du Nord. (Kerry)
With Aleuchatistas, Yassou Benedict
Cafe Du Nord
2170 Market, SF
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