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recommended boston area events

tuesday, december 4th

kelly hogan

@ johnny d's

thursday, december 6th

conor oberst

@ converse hall, tremont st.

thursday, december 6th

jason isbell &

the 400 unit

@ the sinclair

friday, december 7th

the weisstronauts 14th

annual holiday jubilee

with guests tsunami of sound

preacher jack, & the derangers

@ the midway cafe, jp

friday, december 7th


moving mountains


@ the sinclair

saturday, december 8th

patrick watson

@ the sinclair

saturday, december 8th

the faint perform

"danse macabre"


icky blossoms

@ the paradise

sunday, december 9th

band of horses

@ house of blues

sunday, december 9th



@ the paradise

wednesday, december 12th

concrete blonde

jim bianco

@ the sinclair

thursday, december 13th

annual boston christmas cavalcade

benefit for the homeless

featuring tons of artists

(see fb event for details)

@ johnny d's

thursday, december 13th

nada surf

eternal summers

@ the paradise

thursday, december 13th

mates of state

in the valley below

@ brighton music hall

friday, december 14th

forgetters (blake from

jawbreaker's band)

& more tba

@ democracy center, harvard square

sunday, december 30th

sufjan stevens

sheila saputo

@ the royale

monday, december 31st

my morning jacket

@ agganis arena

monday, december 31st

deer tick

two gallants

@ the sinclair

monday, january 7th


@ the paradise

tuesday, january 8th


@ great scott

saturday, january 19th

mission of burma

@ the sinclair

sunday, january 20th

camper van beethoven


@ the middle east down

sunday, january 20th


@ the orpheum

sunday, january 20th

ra ra riot

@ the paradise

sunday, january 27th


@ great scott

tuesday, january 29th

kathleen edwards

sera cahoone

@ brighton music hall

wednesday, february 13th

yo la tengo

@ the paradise

saturday, march 2nd

unknown mortal orchestra

@ brighton music hall

tuesday, march 12th

tame impala

@ house of blues

thursday, march 14th

jukebox the ghost

matt pond pa

lighthouse and the whaler

@ brighton music hall

tuesday, march 26th

yo la tengo

@ the paradise

wednesday & thursday

april 3rd & 4th

they might be giants

@ the paradise

visit tourfilter for more shows

Thursday, November 18, 2004

Rapid-Fire Round-Up

So, wanna hazard a guess on how many people have downloaded those live Arcade Fire tracks from here? Go ahead, try. I'll tell ya in the comments. I'm stunned. I'm also very, very glad that the 'Nac doesn't get charged for bandwidth usage. Whew.

Oh, and by the way, that supposed Neil Young (or maybe Leonard Cohen) cover they're doing this tour? Well, sources say it's actually a new Arcade Fire song, and that singer Win Butler is just yankin' our collective chains. Cheeky monkey. But hey, if it really is an original... it's another bit o' genius.

Way too many things to mention, but I'm going to give it the old college try. And awaaaaaay we go...

Hey, Exploit Boston! is back in action. A potentially indespensible resource for Boston area readers and their social schedules. Not just that, but they're providing a streaming radio station filled with Boston-area indie bands. Been listening to it all damn day, and it's excellent. I'm hoping to contribute to the site's content, in as much as my own hectic schedule will allow it. Bookmark and visit often.

And if you've ever ridden your bicycle in Boston (or are too scared to), then heads up: This Monday, the Boston City Council will hold a public hearing at 5:30pm in the Iannella Chamber on the fifth floor of Boston City Hall to discuss two issues:
  • Order for a hearing regarding the reinstatment of the bike czar position.

  • Order for a hearing to determine what steps can be taken to increase the safety of bicyclists in the city.
  • This hearing comes as a result of a previous meeting that was called in the wake of Kirsten Malone's tragic death while biking in Allston last summer. Boston used to have a point person for biking-related issues, but the job was cut after five years for budgetary reasons. Concerned citizens (myself included) would love to see this position brought back, and to see much more work done with bicycle safety issues in this town. This meeting is another important step towards more bike-friendly streets and intersections.

    The meeting is open to the public and anyone can testify in front of the Committee on City & Neighborhood Services. That's Monday, November 22nd, 5:30pm, on the 5th floor of City Hall. Thanks go to Committee Chair Rob Consalvo for following up the first meeting and pulling this next one together.

    A present from outta nowhere: An unreleased track from My Own Sweet, newly mastered from a ton of long-awaited recordings that might, maybe, somehow, eventually see the light of day. For now, check out Easy Life. Thanks, Chris. (oh, and if you never did, be sure to download another one from the My Life or Some Dream compilation.)

    I really, really, really want to travel to D.C. in February for the Teenbeat 20th Anniversary bash. Unrest, Versus, Tuscadero, and Eggs all reuniting. Wow. Hey, Chris... got any spare couch space for me?

    In the wake of the death of live-music repository Sharing the Groove comes the birth of a new "high quality torrent site" called The Trader's Den. Worth a look.

    My excitement over the long-awaited release of Half Life 2 was quickly squashed when I loaded it up to discover that I was one of thousands to experience a particularly nasty audio-stuttering bug. It renders the game pretty much unplayable (unless you're up for the HL2 'dance remix' edition), so I've put it aside until developer Valve can come up with a fix. Glad I've got Halo 2 and GTA : San Andreas on hand... as far as backup games go, not too shabby.

    The Steampowered and forums are on fire with complaints about the bug, reactions ranging from annoyance to "let's sue the bastards!". Some are digitally freaking out that Valve hasn't even acknowledged the issue after two days and a flood of postings/emails. Easy kids, all in good time. I'd wager the developers are all over this one... unless, of course, they're still hungover from the game's release party.

    Mini-review from the 10 minutes I played it: One of the most beautiful games I've ever seen. The physics are as brilliant as promised. Too bad about the big honkin' bug.

    UPDATE: Fellow gamer Mark McWilliams has pulled together a handy resource page for anyone else running into the Half Life 2 audio stuttering problem.

    Casual viewers of tech-geek-news show The Screen Savers over on G4TechTV will notice they've been in reruns since last week. The sad reason? Much of the cast and crew got the shiny, sharpened axe.

    One of the casualties was new co-host Alex Albrecht (pictured above, on his last day in the office), who was brought in a couple months back after G4 swallowed up TechTV and relocated the show from San Fran to LA. I really think the guy was just finding his TV footing (and mercifully cutting back on calling everything "jank"), so it's a real bummer that he wasn't given more time to develop his hosting skills. Also let go was mad modder Yoshi, and phone-number-giver-outer Dan 'Foo-Foo' Huard, who never did quite get the hang of things (sloooow doooown), but was still a welcome presence in the nook.

    While G4 has now officially screwed with pretty much everything that was ever good about that show, they did make a couple good decisions in keeping co-host Kevin Rose and nook-maven Sarah Lane. They're super-solid, well-spoken, and just perfect on the show. I'd love to see the new TSS (which will supposedly be back after Thanksgiving) co-hosted by the two of them, but I suppose it's too much to hope that they'll ever go back to their more-techy, less-cheesy filling. I mean, "models" in the LAN parties? Interviews with bad band members and c-level tv stars that have nothing to do with Tech? The content took a real nosedive after the merger, and I'd be crazy to think that yet another revamp will bring back the good stuff. Right? Sigh.

    Make sure you stop by Alex, Kevin, and Sarah's blogs for their take on the layoffs.

    Not only does it look like mainstream comic book uber-convention Wizard World is coming to Boston next September (something I maaaay just be geeky enough to check out), but we're also getting the unfortunately named Super MegaFest this weekend. Anthony Daniels (C3PO), Kenny Baker (R2D2), Vern Troyer, and Adrienne Barbeau? Um, think I'll pass on this one... although I am a big fan of artist and guest-of-honor Jim Steranko, and Top 10 artist Gene Ha. I'd be interested to compare the number of people who ask Adrienne about Swamp Thing to the people who ask her about HBO's Carniv´┐Żle. I'm guessing maybe 10 to 1.

    Wil Wheaton has a great new post on his audition for a guest role on Alias. Well worth a read.

    Uh oh. Or, rather, woo hoo! Take your pick. Alan Moore's V for Vendetta is on track for a big screen adaptation. Be excited, or um, be very afraid.

    Also in the graphic storytelling (and 'hella good news') department, Rick Spears and Rob G's Teenagers from Mars comic is finally getting collected, and in a gigantic 272 page volume. That's in February, kids.

    Hey, Patton Oswalt has a blog. Love the guy on Best Week Ever, never seen him on King of Queens, and he was sadly underused in the upcoming Blade: Trinity. I kinda wanna check out his recently-released comedy record sometime. Anybody heard it?

    While everyone's reading journalist Kevin Sites' excellent Iraq-based blog, they should also stop over to Christopher Allbritton's always-interesting Back to Iraq. Christopher is an independently funded (via donations through the site) journalist who spends much of his time living and writing in the heart of Baghdad.

    Back in late October, however, he was warned to leave due to threats against journalists, and he posted the following...
    "...I'm not happy to be out. It's cutting and running, and it feels like crap. I want to cover the story, as best I can, and I really don't like leaving my friends and colleagues behind. My fixer and translator have no work now, although I'm trying to find them another journalist to work with while I'm gone. I plan to return after Ramadan or whenever we hear that it's safe(r) again."
    Someone asked him in him comments why all the journalists stay together in Baghdad, and he answered...
    "The journalists are clumped together because we only endanger ourselves that way. Kodia asked me why we didn't disperse and stay with families:
  • It's more difficult to secure their houses (blast walls, guards, etc.);
  • We can't trust the neighbors not to rat us out;
  • I don't trust any Iraqi I don't know well;
  • And most important, we endanger them by staying with them -- they would be branded as collaborators."
  • Heavy stuff. Looks like he's still in exile, hanging out in Beirut covering the "Palestinian Refugee angle". I'm sure he'll have plenty of words soon on the death of Arafat and the execution of Iraqi aid worker Margaret Hassan.

    While you're surfing various wartime points of view, be sure to check out U.S. soldier Chris Missick's blog. He hasn't been updating as much as he used to, but when he does, it's always good to see. He provides a real on-the-ground perspective that mainstream news can't deliver.

    Just when I start convincing myself that turning 35 doesn't make me that old, I discover that I'm almost exactly the same age as the Internet, and, um, Sesame Street. I was raised on one, and spend way too much time on the other.

    Tomorrow, my take on ILB's argument-inducing Top 40 American Bands list. For now, read Matt's.

    featured mp3 download
    neil halstead
    live in cambridge, ma
    on november 14th, 2008
    previously: joy formidable - boston 2011

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