Wednesday, July 29, 2009

WED 7/29: Mp3's, Stargazing, Rock, Rockabilly

Sleepy LaBeef
The posts might be briefer today and tomorrow, so I can get a good jump on the weekend.

For the record, I didn't make it to Great Scott for 'Twang & Awe' last night, so my 'cool factor' took another hit. Dammit.


WED 7/29

Puma MP3 Beatdown: Championship
at Institute of Contemporary Art, 100 Northern Ave, Boston (South Boston/Waterfront)
FREE / 18+

This was supposed to happen in May at Puma City in the Volvo Ocean Racing Village, but I'm pretty sure it's at the ICA tonight. Various teams consisting of hipness purveyors (e.g. Weekly Dig, Phoenix, Lab Boston, Bladerunners, Karmaloop, etc.) are going head-to-head in short rounds of mp3-DJ battles. Just like "Highlander", there can only be one left standing.

Update: Yes, the open bar starts at 8pm until it's empty (may last about 45 minutes). The earlier you show up, the better your chances are to get in -- they may run out of space. As DJ Mistaker told me, "If you enjoy drinking and yelling you will find yourself in good company."

No one replied to my (albeit late) inquiries, but I assume it's not outside. It's not the usual free night at ICA, so they'll probably have some contingency plan. There was a rumor of an "open bar" at the beginning; even if the Beatdown doesn't begin until 9pm, you may get a free drink or two...

WED 7/29

8:30pm to 9:30pm
Astronomy Open Night
at Coit Observatory, 725 Comm Ave, Boston (BU campus)

If it's clear tonight, you could stand on the roof of a BU building and look at the stars. When I went to my high school's observatory, it seemed like it was always cold. (Maybe I didn't show up when the weather was nice...) Maybe it'll be better than your sweltering apartment?

Astronomy Open Night at the Observatory is a chance for people to come observe the night sky through telescopes as well as binoculars and to see things they might not otherwise get to see, all while learning some astronomy.

To find out if the Open Night will be held, call 617-353-2630 no earlier than two hours before the scheduled starting time.

Take one of the elevators to the 5th floor; the stairwell to the Observatory is located next to room 520. There is no handicap accessibility.
This happens most Wednesdays especially when school is in session. It's tentatively scheduled through WED 8/26.

WED 7/29

So Many Dynamos, Cast Spells, Pretty & Nice, Tired Old Bones
at Great Scott, 1222 Comm Ave, Allston
$10 / 18+

So Many Dynamos is a good name for this frenetic, buzzing, synth-laden rock band. Cast Spells has a more relaxed approach which provides the more interesting vocals sufficient space to shine. I whole heartedly recommend listening to Pretty & Nice [non-MySpace music player] who harken back to the time when punk and new wave were colliding into a bubbly powerpop rush.

WED 7/29

Sleepy LaBeef
at Johnny D's, 17 Holland St, Somerville (Davis Sq)
$10 / 21+

It was Sleepy's 74th birthday last week, because I saw it on the NY Times last week. Mister LaBeef doesn't gig around town as often as before, so who knows when he doesn't feel like it anymore.

Born in Arkansas, Sleepy moved to Texas in his teens and has been on the rockabilly/country scene since the late-50s as a contemporary of Elvis, Roy Orbison, Carl Perkins, George Jones, and others. His deep bellow doesn't scrape the bottom like Johnny Cash, but big and round like bouncy, red rockabilly ball.

WED 7/29

The Wild Sea (10pm), Tom Glynn & Dave Rizzuti (7pm)
at Toad, 1912 Mass Ave, Cambridge (Porter Sq)

This is one of those WTF musical moments that happens in Cambridge. Ruth Peterson of The Wild Sea has been at the forefront of several bands (amusia, Ruth) for good reason -- she has the voice of the voice of an angel. She and her cohorts (whose core remains the same) flirted with major-label success before she developed cancer, but it doesn't really matter.

Someone like Ruth rarely gets attention in the modern era, because she's simply too good -- you don't want to stop listening! The music is delightful, but slow song... fast... medium... It doesn't matter -- you're waiting for her to start singing. I've said too much when you could've been listening...

Every set of music is pretty darn good at Toad, so you could get there early to hear singer-songwriter-keyboardist Tom Glynn who'll play with his guitarist, Dave Rizzuti.

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