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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

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Mp3s: David Lynch at the Brattle

First, an admission, and I don't think too many people who aren't married to me know this: I was a total Twin Peaks geek. I don't just mean your average "love the show, bummed when it got cancelled" fan... there are no small amount of those. No, in 1991 I wasn't just a card-carrying member of "C.O.O.P." (Citizens Opposed to the Offing of Peaks)... I was, in fact, the Vermont chapter president. Seriously. I actually sat in a hallway of UVM's Billings Student Center and collected signatures, bundling them up to send to David Lynch's production company, who would send them on to the network. Go ahead, picture it and laugh a little inside, as if you aren't already.

Now, keep in mind, this was back in the early 'net days, when fans communed through Usenet and email discussion lists, when we sat in front of monochrome monitors and sent amber-texted messages through what may have been an actual series of tubes. When Twin Peaks was put on hiatus and in danger of disappearing during its second season, C.O.O.P. chapters started popping up all over the country, with members petitioning, spreading the word, organizing fan-events and letter-writing campaigns. I ended up, by default, becoming my state's lead representative, and I wasn't alone... my fellow volunteers might even be out there reading this. Don't worry, I won't out any of you... you can do that yourself in the comments (I'm looking at you, Mr. Vice President).

Weird thing was, all that effort actually paid off, at least for a little while. ABC listened and brought the show back for six more episodes, just enough to finish off that shaky second season, but no more. The follow-up-that-wasn't of a film, "Fire Walk With Me", answered none of the hanging questions from the series, most importantly: "How's Annie?!".

Later that year, long after the final episode of Twin Peaks came and went, I received an unexpected envelope in my mailbox from the production company. Inside was a personalized thank-you note, written and signed by David Lynch himself, along with a crisp one dollar bill, as he said, "to buy yourself a damn fine cup of coffee." As a hardcore Lynch fan, one who started watching Twin Peaks thanks to a love of "Blue Velvet", and counted the more-recent "Wild at Heart" among his favorite films ever, there couldn't have been anything cooler. (not cool: watching as that framed letter went up in fast-spreading flames just a few months later. An almost Lynchian image, but that's another story).

While his output has varied a bit in the years since, I've never missed seeing his films as soon as they hit theaters, for Lynch succeeds far more often than he fails. With all his work, even if I think he comes up short creatively, the ideas and images still resonate for days afterwards. It had been five long years since his last theatrical release, the excellent "Mulholland Dr.", so when I found out that his newest film was coming to Cambridge's Brattle Theatre, I knew I'd be in line.

What I didn't know was that tickets for the very first showing last Sunday, December 3rd, which would include a Q&A with the director himself, would sell out before I had a chance to get them. Even Craigslist searches proved fruitless, with far more fans looking for tickets than those with extras to offer. I'd given up long before Ashley dropped me an email a few hours before the screening to say she had two extras. Aces.

It'll come as no surprise to David Lynch fans that "Inland Empire" is a hypnotic, twistedly confusing time-bender of a film. At three hours, it's pure, unfiltered Lynch, full of disturbing, dream-like imagery, role-switching, life-sized rabbits (one supposedly played by a masked Naomi Watts), and almost indecipherable symbolism. And as lengthy as it was, there wasn't a single moment that had my mind wandering, and it was tough deciding when to break for the Brattle bathroom. He mines his dependable stock of previous actors (Harry Dean Stanton, Justin Theroux, Diane Ladd, Grace Zabriskie), and adds some new ones (Jeremy Irons, a William H. Macy cameo), but it's Laura Dern's film. We haven't seen enough of her on screen lately, and she's just amazing in this. After we left the theater, we were trying to figure out what a marketing team's plot summary would possibly say, and Lynch's own tagline of "a woman in trouble" is really the only thing that works. And while Dern is easily the female lead, it's hard to say she's actually the woman in question.

Here's David Lynch's question & answer session with the Brattle audience after the credits rolled, as well as a pre-film intro that included some improvisational viola and a bit of poetry...

David Lynch @ the Brattle Theatre

for a screening of "Inland Empire"
Sunday, December 3rd, 2006
Officially declared "David Lynch Day"
in Cambridge, Massachusetts

Mp3: "Inland Empire" Introduction
Mp3: Audience Q&A Session

Y'know, I still can't listen to Lynch speak without thinking of Gordon Cole.

In response to a question about the long-awaited DVD release of the second season of Twin Peaks, he answered with a fairly definitive "spring" (update: April 10th! Season 2 set artwork here). Finally, just a few cold months away. And as unoriginal and unanswerable a question it would have been, I was seriously tempted to ask "Sooo... how's Annie?"...

A few related links...
  • The YouTube-hosted trailer for "Inland Empire".

  • Also over on YouTube, watch Lynch (and a, um, live cow) hang out on a random Hollywood street corner promoting the film, and asking passers-by to "consider Laura Dern". For what exactly, only he knows. If he did indeed mean an award nomination, I only wish we lived in a world that would recognize her.

  • Salon has their own conversation with David Lynch about the film.
  • If I still had that dollar bill that he sent me 15 years ago, it'd be fitting if I spent it on some of "David Lynch Signature Cup" brand coffee. Yes, the director has his own new line of organic brews, including espresso, house roast, and decaf french roast. He made it available for free at our screening, along with "Inland Empire" t-shirts and coasters. The DL coffee line's motto? "It's all in the beans... and I'm just full of beans." Sounds like something one of his characters might say, doesn't it?...


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