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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 22, 2008

Independent Film Fest of Boston: The Music

As regular attendees know, the Independent Film Festival of Boston has made no small effort to incorporate music-related aspects over the past few years, either with band-centric documentaries or films scored by excellent musicians. 2006 was a boon, as that year the fest gave us both the Pixies documentary "loudQUIETloud" and the Mission of Burma "Not A Photograph" doc, as well as "The Proposition", written and scored by Nick Cave. Last year served up two more strong documentaries in "Punk's Not Dead" and "Silver Jew". Worthwhile viewing all.

When the 2008 schedule was announced, I was very psyched to see that the IFFB has continued and expanded upon their inclusion of films for music-lovers. Here's a quick run down of what's in store for us this week...
  • Foremost on my mind is Grant Gee's Joy Division documentary, which screens at the Somerville Theatre on Thursday at 9:15 and midnight Friday at the Coolidge Corner Theatre. It should be the perfect companion piece to last year's "Control", the dramatization of the life and death of lead singer Ian Curtis. This was the only film I specifically wished would be showing at this year's IFFB, and my wishes were granted. Hit up the official UK site and view the trailer to prepare. Get your tickets here.

  • Another welcome artist documentary is Public Enemy: Welcome To The Terrordome, focusing on the only rap act that I've ever obsessed over. For me, P.E. was the be-all-end-all of politically-charged, socially-conscious hip-hop... no one did it better, and no one's done it better since. There's never been two frontmen who more perfectly complimented each other than Chuck D and Flavor Flav, and their wordplay, rhymes, and backing tracks were truly inventive. Featuring appearances by the Beastie Boys, Talib Kweli, Rage Against the Machine's Tom Morello, Henry Rollins, and Korn's Jonathan Davis, the doc was directed by Roxbury's own Robert Patton-Spruill, and he'll be at the one and only screening: 11 o'clock on Saturday night, April 26th at the Somerville Theatre. Here's the official site, trailer, and ticket link.

  • There are a couple different documentaries about relatively new genres of music, and one of them is "Nerdcore Rising". For those of you who like a dash of nerdery in your hip-hop, this film introduces you (or more familiarizes you with) MC Frontalot, aka Damian Hess, the so-called Godfather of a genre that the documentary even debates the existence of. Fans and bystanders offer up their input, including hip-hop artist/producer Prince Paul, Jello Biafra, comedian Brian Posehn, J. Live, Tycho & Gabe of Penny Arcade, and Weird Al. The film screens twice: A midnight showing on Friday, April 25th at the Somerville (tix), and again at 5pm on Sunday at the Brattle (tix). Here's the official site and trailer. Added bonus: MC Frontalot, in addition to appearing at the screening with director Negin Farsad, will be performing at Sunday night's IFFB Awards party along with Price Paul.

  • And what could be called Nerdcore's bookish brother, the even more specialized music genre of "Wizard Rock" gets the documentary treatment in We Are Wizards. Local duo Harry & the Potters features prominently in this exploration of JK Rowling-inspired bands, and they'll be performing twice this week: One is an acoustic set after the Coolidge "We Are Wizards" screening on Thursday the 24th at 7:30 (tix), and another is a full-on party joining three of the other bands from the film (Draco and the Malfoys, the Whomping Willows, and the Hungarian Horntails) on Saturday night (party tix). While the party does follow a Saturday afternoon screening and Q&A (with director Josh Koury, Harry & The Potters, and Brad Neely), you'll need to buy separate tickets if you want to see that screening. Here's the film's official site, MySpace page, and trailer.

  • Another documentary in which music obviously plays a huge role is "Life. Support. Music.", which tells the inspiring story of NYC (and now Cambridge-based) guitarist Jason Crigler, who suffered an on-stage brain hemorrhage in 2004. Norah Jones and Marshall Crenshaw play a part in his recovery, and director Eric Daniel Metzgar will be on hand at the screenings: Sunday, Apr 27th at 4:45 PM at the Coolidge (tix) and on Monday night at 5pm at the Somerville (tix). Have a look at the official site and the trailer.

  • Another tale of recovery is told through the tragic love story of "Song Sung Blue", a documentary about Milwaukee-based tribute band "Lightning & Thunder", a husband and wife team who sing the songs of Neil Diamond and Patsy Cline. The film won both the Slamdance 2008 Film Festival's Audience Award and Grand Jury Award, and somehow weaves in an appearance by Eddie Vedder. Have a look at the trailer and official site, and grab tickets to either the Saturday 9:45 PM screening here, or the Sunday 7:15pm screening here. Both take place at the Somerville Theatre.

  • Moving on to films that aren't necessarily about music, but instead feature the sounds of some damn good musicians: Harmony Korine's latest directorial effort is "Mister Lonely", and the film's soundtrack (released this week on Drag City Records) is composed by none other than Jason Pierce, aka J. Spaceman of Spiritualized and Spacemen 3, alongside instrumentals from Sun City Girls. The fictional film itself is about a misfit troop of celebrity impersonators (including Diego Luna as Michael Jackson and the wonderful Samantha Morton as Marilyn Monroe), and director Korine (who wrote "Kids", and helmed "Gummo") will be present for the Thursday night, April 24th screening at the Somerville Theatre (tix).

    Here's a taste of what S.C.G. contributed...
    Mp3: Sun City Girls - "Mr. Lonely Viola"
  • The Tracey Fragments is the latest film from Juno star Ellen Page (although it was filmed first), and was soundtracked by her fellow Canadians Broken Social Scene. Five of the collective's songs turn up on the soundtrack, which comes out next week, including a cover of Patti Smith's "Horses", which you can preview on this MySpace page. Another personal fave makes an aural appearance in the film: Rose Melberg (Softies/Tiger Trap) doing her solo song "Each New Day". Have a look at the film's official site, trailer, and for more details on the soundtrack, hit up The Playlist.

  • Finally, the film My Effortless Brilliance serves up a star turn (and a co-writing credit) for Harvey Danger frontman Sean Nelson. Gaze upon the film's official site, MySpace page, and trailer, and grab tickets to either of the two Somerville Theatre screenings: Thursday, April 24th at 7:45 PM (tix) or Saturday, April 26th at 2:45pm (tix).
  • The whole 2008 Independent Film Festival of Boston she-bang kicks off tomorrow night with a screening of Brad Anderson's "Transsiberrian", and along with the finely-named directory, Sir Ben Kingsley will be, as they say, in the house. Tickets will be gone by showtime, so head here to grab one of your own. And keep an eye on the IFFB 2008 Blog for updated info and film spotlights as tomorrow gets closer and the week rolls on.

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

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