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Friday, October 31, 2014

Spend election night with Mick and Ben at the Hideout!

Posted By on 10.31.14 at 03:30 PM

You should be hanging out with these guys on election night.
  • Thom Clark
  • You should be hanging out with these guys on election night.
I'd like to take this opportunity to quash a vicious rumor regarding my partner in crime—Mr. Mick Dumke—and our upcoming election-night extravaganza at the Hideout.

Despite everything you may have heard, Mick will not—and I must emphatically repeat, not—be dispensing heaping helpings from his personal stash of medical marijuana at Tuesday's show.

I'm not even sure Mick has a personal stash of medical marijuana. Though, if he did, there wouldn't be anything wrong with that.

Instead, on hand for the big show will be Alderman Will Burns, state rep Kelly Cassidy, and maybe columnist Rick Kogan, our old friend from the Tribune.

And if that's not enough . . .

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Local filmmaker Stephen Cone talks Warhol, teaching, and making three movies in a year

Posted By on 10.31.14 at 03:00 PM

The Mystery of Life, Cones latest movie, screens three times this week.
  • The Mystery of Life, Cone's latest movie, screens three times this week.
It's been a busy year for Chicago-based actor and filmmaker Stephen Cone. In June his most recent feature Black Box received a weeklong run at the Gene Siskel Film Center, his featurette This Afternoon played at this Chicago International Film Festival earlier this month, and his latest work, The Mystery of Life, plays at Chicago Filmmakers tomorrow at 8 PM, Sunday at 6 PM, and on Wednesday at 6:30 PM at Columbia College's Hokin Hall. While completing these movies, Cone also increased his workload as an acting teacher, instructing courses at Second City, Chicago Acting Studio, Chicago Filmmakers, and Northwestern University. Not surprisingly Mystery focuses squarely on the acting process. It's a highly personal work as well as Cone's most experimental piece to date. In it he plays a fictionalized version of himself, an independent filmmaker casting his next movie (which is also called "The Mystery of Life"). The drama grows out of the emotional transactions that occur during the casting sessions, blurring the line between performance and real life. The other day I caught up with Cone for a few minutes before his course at Northwestern started, and we discussed how his two most recent projects came to be.

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The bizarre world of local pop-rock wiz and Olive Garden fan Paul Cherry

Posted By on 10.31.14 at 02:30 PM

Paul Cherry
  • Courtesy of Paul Cherry's Facebook page
  • Paul Cherry
Local label-slash-collective FeelTrip is gearing up to release a handful of albums leading up to the end of the year, and today it offered up the debut single from Chicago pop-rock wiz Paul Cherry, "Everybody's Burning Out." Visual artist Weston Getto Allen put together a bizarre, lo-fi, slightly NSFW video for Cherry's irresistible, buoyant number, which shows a day in the life of a freewheeling, drug-addled musician as he stumbles through LA; the whole video is made up of point-of-view shots so you can see the dude send texts, pop pills, and get beat up from his perspective.

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Alstory Simon's release from prison is the latest twist in a complicated legal saga

Posted By on 10.31.14 at 01:36 PM

Alstory Simon left prison a free man yesterday.
  • Seth Perlman/AP Photos
  • Alstory Simon left prison a free man yesterday.
The page-one story in both the Tribune and Sun-Times Friday was the freeing of Alstory Simon, after State's Attorney Anita Alvarez decided to dismiss his conviction. We can now ponder the complexities and ironies of an extraordinary legal saga—a double murder in a south-side park in 1982 that led to the abolition of the death penalty in Illinois while contributing hugely to the erosion of respect for Alvarez's profession. Now we have not one convicted killer, Anthony Porter, exonerated, but two, Simon being the so-called "real" killer who confessed in 1999 as Porter went free.

I've watched skeptically the past few years as Simon's cause was championed. The attorneys who took up his case had heretofore been identified with cops and prosecutors, not with prisoners doing life who claimed they'd been railroaded. The prosecutor, Alvarez, who seemed so receptive to their arguments, had reasons to loathe and mess with the legacy of Porter's original champion, David Protess, who back in the day was a professor running the Medill Innocence Project.

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The last Metal & Candlelit Yoga session of the year is tomorrow night

Posted By on 10.31.14 at 01:00 PM

Andre Foisy leading students at Augusts Metal & Candlelit Yoga session
  • Courtesy of Andre Foisy
  • Andre Foisy leading students at August's Metal & Candlelit Yoga session.
Earlier this year experimental musician and yoga instructor Andre Foisy (Locrian, Kwaidan) debuted Metal & Candlelit Yoga nights, an ingenious musical event that combines his two passions. The title does a good job of explaining the affair: Foisy leads attendees in a yoga session set to heavy hypnotic tunes in the candlelit glow of West Town's Turbodog studio, and guest musicians end the evening with a "drone bath" performance.

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Soft Leather's early Halloween Party took freaky to a whole new level

Posted By on 10.31.14 at 12:30 PM

Street View is a fashion series in which Isa Giallorenzo spotlights some of the coolest styles seen in Chicago.

Organized by Johnny Love, Zain Curtis (Teen Witch Fan Club) and David Beltran (Starfoxx), and hailed by the Reader's own Gossip Wolf as a favorite "pansexual dress-to-sweat event," Soft Leather is gathering a crowd of people "who are tired of being surrounded by bros every time they want to go out and dance," as defined by Love. The twice-monthly event—which alternates between the East Room in Logan Square and Door No. 3 in Wicker Park—had a Halloween party last Saturday, at which "freaky" was taken a whole new level.

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New music from Fugazi that is actually really old

Posted By on 10.31.14 at 12:00 PM

First Demo
  • First Demo
Fugazi called it a day over a decade a ago, and with no reunion in sight they've at least been nice enough to share some unheard material with the world. The legendary D.C. foursome, who in their 17-year run redefined what a punk band could be—musically and ethically—are unleashing their first recordings in late November, a collection of demos produced in 1988 after they had only played ten shows. Today's 12 O'Clock Track is a preview song off of First Demo, "Merchandise," whose finalized version wound up on Fugazi's flawless first LP, Repeater. While "Merchandise" is a song I've heard probably 1,000 times in my life, listening to this rawer, amped-up version is almost like hearing it for the first time, the young band's haphazard, noisy take on this classic is bursting at the seams with excitement and punk energy. As time has gone on since Fugazi's hiatus, I've found myself struggling to enjoy some of their later material because of how seriously they seem to take themselves. What I love so much about this take on "Merchandise" is that it sounds like the guys in the band are having the time of their lives, belting out the overblown choruses. Check it out below.

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Did you read about Tylenol poisonings, secondhand graves, and Madison Bumgarner?

Posted By on 10.31.14 at 11:47 AM

Remember this scare?

Reader staffers share stories that fascinate, amuse, or inspire us.

Hey, did you read:

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Disappears side project Tüth produces electronic music from a strange, liminal place

Posted By on 10.31.14 at 10:53 AM


Disappears bassist Damon Carruesco has been hard at work on a new experimental project he's calling Tüth. A marked departure from the noisy Krautrock grooves of Disappears, Tüth entertains elements of both industrial music and hip-hop in the handful of tracks that have emerged on its SoundCloud page. Carruesco's barbed wire beats support whispered vocals, pitch-shifted raps, and traces of saxophone, all in the service of a feeling of isolation that's more Death Grips than Kraftwerk.

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A guide to navigating the 'musicians' section of Craigslist

Posted By on 10.31.14 at 08:30 AM

  • Rommel Canlas/Shutterstock

There is no online courtship ritual for musicians. It's 2014: Tinder and OKCupid are probably valued at more money than I'll see in my entire life, but there aren't any GPS apps for musicians just looking for a platonic jam session. I mean, I get it—romantic connection is a near-universal human desire, while jamming through hand-me-down amps is not quite as sought out. But musicians have to take their anonymous thirst somewhere, and with no specialized network to join (yet), they take it to Craigslist.

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