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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

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Coming: The Indie Film Fest of Boston

One of my most favorite signs of early spring: The announcement of the full schedule for the annual Independent Film Festival of Boston. This year marks the fifth edition, and while I've attended every one so far, this is the first year I've purposefully left my social schedule open between April 25th and May 1st. No conflicts, no out-of-town trips, no rock shows to get in the way. The only choices I'll have to make are between films I want to see that happen to conflict with each other.

Of the long list of this year's films, both narrative and documentary, here's one from each day that jumps out at me...

Wednesday, April 25th, 2007

The opening night film this year is director Hal Hartley's latest, Fay Grim, with Parker Posey in the title role. If the character's name sounds familiar to Hartley fans, it's because the movie is a sequel to his 1997 film Henry Fool, with Posey reprising her character. Co-star James Urbaniak, who will be appearing at the opening night screening, also reprises the role of her brother Simon Grim. And while Urbaniak's imdb listing is lengthy, I'm most psyched to see the man who voices Dr. Venture on the animated Venture Bros. series on Adult Swim, and a guy whose blog I read regularly.

Thursday, April 26th, 2007

The world premiere of On Broadway on the fest's second night will be the quintessential Boston-flavored affair, as the film couldn't be any more locally connected. It's set here, was filmed here, and most of the cast and crew are from here. The screening is sure to be a party, with director Dave McLaughlin and some of the cast in attendance, including former New Kid Joey McIntyre, Watertown native (and, yes, leather-pantsed vampire slayer) Eliza Dushku, and (cue "The Final Countdown") Arrested Development's low-voiced puppet-master, Will Arnett. No doubt much of the crew will be in the audience as well, and I'm sure tickets will disappear shortly. Hell, I'd stop reading this right now and go get yours if I were you.

Friday, April 27th, 2007

Friday night at the Brattle brings the documentary Punk's Not Dead, about the current and ever-evolving state of the over 30-year-old punk rock movement. Tons of bands and musicians in this thing, o'course: Fugazi, Dead Kennedys, Circle Jerks, X, Black Flag, NOFX... the list goes on and on. Director Susan Dynner will be in town for both screenings of the film, and I'm sure she'll have some stories to tell.

Saturday, April 28th, 2007

There is no film with a higher geek-factor this year than documentary The King of Kong, which means, of course, that I am compelled to attend. Seriously, an entire movie about the original world record-holder of the Donkey Kong high score, and the man who threatened to dethrone him 20 years later? Total arcade generation gold. (also screens on Friday night)

Sunday, April 29th, 2007

Sunday night I'll be at The Ten, directed by David Wain of The State comedy collective, and of the sadly departed Stella TV series. Apart from the Stella episodes and shorts, I believe this is the first film he's directed since 2001's Wet Hot American Summer, which had a pretty great cast... but this one might just top it: Paul Rudd, Famke Janssen, Winona Ryder, Justin Theroux, Liev Schreiber, Gretchen Mol, Rob Corddry, Janeane Garofalo, Adam Brody, and Jessica Alba. And that's not even a complete list of recognizable names. The film is a series of ten (duh) short stories centered around the ten commandments, and word is that someone from the cast will make it to one or both of the screenings (there's another the previous day as well).

Monday, April 30th, 2007

During the Silver Jews tour of Israel in the summer of 2006, filmmaker (and blogger) Michael Tully followed David Berman & company around to document the noteworthy trip, and the results are the film Silver Jew. As a longtime Joos fan who was very glad to see them play here in Boston that year, I'm really looking forward to this one, especially with director Tully in attendance at both screenings (the film also screens on Sunday night).

The music geek in me won out over the baseball fan on this particular night of the fest, but I've gotta mention the documentary Rumbo a Las Grandes Ligas, which I'd be seeing if it wasn't for Silver Jew. It takes an in-depth look at baseball in the Dominican Republic, where for many kids it's more a religion than a pastime. Our own Big Papi, the Red Sox David Ortiz (who, as I type this, has just hit a couple homers), appears in the film , and both director Jared Goodman and producer Eran Lobel will be at the screening. And hey, the Sox are off that day, and will be back in town to play Oakland... wonder what the chances of Ortiz showing up at that screening are? Hmmmm...

Tuesday, May 1st, 2007

The film that will officially bring the 5th annual Independent Film Festival of Boston to a close is the world premiere of Brooklyn Rules from Rhode Island-born director Michael Corrente. He'll be at the final night screening of the movie, which stars Alec Baldwin, Freddie Prinze, Jr., Scott Caan, Jerry Ferrara (Entourage's Turtle), and Mena Suvari.

And that hardly scratches the surface of this year's lineup, and as the fest gets closer I'll no doubt add a bunch more to my "gotta see" list (especially some of the "late night" screenings). Check the full schedule to make your own list, and get on those tickets (or better yet, a festival pass) before they're gone... every year too many film fans are shut out who wait until the last minute, so don't be one of 'em.

A few IFFB links...
  • Befriend the IFFBoston on MySpace.

  • For more on all the films, visit the excellent new Unofficial Guide to the 2007 IFFBoston. Apparently the 5th year anniversary gift for a film festival is your very first fansite.

  • Check out this little feature on Boston.TV about the premiere screening of the Mission Of Burma documentary that took place at last year's IFFBoston. Randomly, Amie and I can be spotted in the crowd for a micro-second, and it was good to see my old friend Dan (who used to sell me lots of records at Pure Pop in Burlington, Vermont) interviewed briefly, saying "I'm a huge Burma fan, absolutely".

  • A final footnote: Just when I thought the festival couldn't be improved, I discover that the Somerville Theater now serves beer on tap. Nothing better to wash down the ol' popcorn.
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