Interestingness in the local news vol 40

spacs first summer concert is…yanni. [nt]

pjacks claims moving has helped [tu]

there’s a distillery opening in albany [tu]

burrito joes closing [tu]

legends got two of their bartenders arrested and 11 citations [tu]

r bar is for sale already [tu]

illium cafe in troy is expanding [tu]

ex-sheriff held in jail named after him [tu]

dude shot his girlfriend in the head with a shotgun [tu]

dude got stabbed after the tattoo expo at northern lights [tu]

Occupy Albany, Weekly Update Nov. 25 to Dec. 2

Welcome, everyone, to my first post for KAB. By way of introduction, my name is Robert Magee and I’ve been with Occupy Albany since its inception on October 1, 2011. I’ve been recruited to do a weekly summary of our activities during the past week and let you know what we plan to do in the coming week.

Last Friday, OA put together a flash mob in response to Black Friday. A group of between 30 and 40 occupiers visited Colonie Center and Crossgates Malls to sing parodies of Christmas carols meant to draw attention to the perils of unthinking consumerism and the harmful effect it has on society and culture.

On Saturday OA hosted a teach-in on participatory economics which was presented by Colin Donnaruma and Nick Partyka. There were about fifty people in attendance and though participatory economics is a difficult subject to get through in the time set out for the teach-in (about an hour and a half), it did foster a lot of good discussion about alternatives to the current economic system.

Monday saw the arraignment on charges of trespassing and disorderly conduct of fifty occupiers who had been arrested for breaking the curfew at Lafayette Park during the week of Nov. 12-20. Most of those who were arraigned on Monday had been arraigned during a mass arrest which occurred on Saturday Nov. 20. The purpose of the arrests was to reassert the people’s right to occupy public space for the purpose of engaging in political discourse and dissent. Despite receiving a threatening fax during the week, Albany County District Attorney David Soares has stood firm in his commitment not to prosecute non-violent protestors and the charges are expected to be dropped by Albany City Court Judge Keefe after the Occupy Albany Legal Team submits a written application for dismissal on December 12.

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Quality events for this weekend vol. 29

First weekend in December!

Friday December 2nd

First Friday December, 5pm [fbook]

MIRK – Grind – Album Release Party, 7pm at the Armory [fbook]

The Pistolwhips, My Favorite Fence, and the Land Lines, 8:30pm at Valentine’s [fbook]

Japanther at EMPAC, 8pm [fbook] Bonus: Enter to win a pair of tickets to Saturday’s showing via KAB here, contest ends Saturday at 12.

Hudson River Coffee House’s One Year Anniversary [fbook]

Saturday December 3rd

Sgt Dunbar and the Hobo Banned, 8pm at the Sanctuary for Independent Media [fbook]

The Knee Benders, 10pm at Casey Flynns [fbook]

If I left something out, leave it as a comment!

Record release: Mirk celebrates their #Grind

In my personal music-related experiences, I always find it refreshing to me to stumble across people with a genuine vision for their creativity. Mirk is a prime example of one of those people.

Mirk, frontman of the band of the same name, has led his band mates through some trying times this year following their name change (shortened from Mirk and the New Familiars to Mirk). Mirk has since been consumed by all things MIRK – from writing music to recording to producing and performing – the whole 9 yards and beyond. Mirk is more than what’s in the name and tonight the 7-piece collective will be thanking their fans for sticking with them at the Washington Avenue Armory with a fan-exclusive record release show.

Their latest album, Grind, is a home-grown effort created 100% local and in-house, from recording to production. The band has an amazing HQ – located in the Armory and combines an office with a recording studio – in what is literally every bands dream space. The album, on Mirk’s label, Foster House Records, encompasses what the band is all about – being on one’s Grind. Working through every day and constantly growing.

In discussing the new album, Mirk discussed how the record is “really big and grandeouse” in comparision to the debut album, Love. “It’s a wall of sound and really loud. I know the sounds that I’m going for, I’ve found it,” he says. “So it’s a lot more deliberate. The times are a little bit darker, so it’s a little bit darker.”

“As far as the name Grind, it’s what we’re on. It’s been such a nonstop effort, we’ve just kept it moving, just kept grinding,” he says. “The first album was all about love and relationships and a lot of the songs on the new records are all metaphors for work, music, success and the grind. For example, there’s a song ‘Favorite Girl’ which is all about New York, but it sounds like it’s about me talking to a girl. It’s about how New York will kick the shit out of you or make you a star.”

The record is officially due out next year in March, and tonight a limited pressing will be given to the first 500 in attendance tonight. Tickets are available at the Washington Avenue box office, and the show kicks off tonight at 7pm.

OVER: Ticket Giveaway: Japanther at EMPAC

Tonight and tomorrow, Japanther will be performing at EMPAC. Japanther will be performing a piece called “The Cake of The 3 Towers” and we’ve got a pair of tickets to giveaway for tomorrow night’s performance.

To enter, leave a comment on this post with a valid e-mail address and we’ll notify the winner tomorrow at 12pm.

Check out Japanther behind the scenes in residency at EMPAC:

What Japanther is all about:

Japanther is an art project established circa 2001 by Ian Vanek and Matt Reilly in Brooklyn, New York. In addition to wild interactive live showings in unconventional settings, the duo has collaborated with Dan Graham, Gelitin, Eileen Myles, ninjasonik, and Spank Rock, among others. Japanther was featured in the 2006 Whitney Biennial as part of Don’t Trust Anyone Over Thirty and the 2011 Venice Biennial as part of Gelitin’s Some Like It Hot performance. The duo has made a name for themselves through unique performance situations including shows with synchronized swimmers, oversized puppets, from out of the back of a moving truck, alongside giant dinosaurs, and with BMXers flying off the walls of the Whitney sculpture garden.

Tonight’s performance begins at 8pm, and tickets are still available at the box office. Get commenting to win tickets to tomorrow (Saturday’s) performance!

Review: The Addams Family at Proctor’s Theatre

If you’ve been following the chronicles of KAB over the past year or so, then you’ll notice this advice to be a bit redundant but still timelessly important to keep in the back of your mind: The key to keeping things fun in your city is to experience what is going on in your city. GO OUT AND DO THINGS.

My most recent example of that mantra was earlier this week. I caught the live performance of the Addams Family Musical at Proctor’s in Schenectady on its opening night.

Part of an Addams Family theme window display

Prior to the performance, I looked up how long the runtime is being full aware that musicals aren’t really ‘my thing’. Once seated in the soft velveteen seats and the curtain pulled opened with the help of the infamous Thing, I was sucked in. Didn’t look at my cell phone for the entire first act and that can be verified by my guest if you insist.

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Oh Dubstep, Who Really Birthed You?

Admittedly, some of this article is about journalists twisting the words of American artists to create hype and get their stories read. HOWEVER, why is it that American artists exhibit such a tendency to claim themselves as creators, innovators, and inventors of musical genres? Music only has a limited number of notes and rhythms to explore, and there is bound to be similarities across the spectrum of every sound. Journalists quantify sounds they think are new into genre names, mainly as a way to write about it without using a string of adjectives.

In light of Korn’s Jonathan Davis putting his claim on the invention of dubstep, I felt it was time to dig a bit deeper. Albany is arguably a hot-bed for this aggressive, mid-range infused, “tearout” version of the sound, and before a publicity stunt gets rooted in the kids brains as a fact, I felt something needed to be said. In fact, it was just over a year ago that another American mainstream artist claimed HE started dubstep. Hip-hop, pop and R&B producer Timbaland staked his claim in July 2010 that he was responsible for the dubstep genre, but that he was calling it “dub-bass” despite the fact that nobody ever heard him do so until July 2010. Obviously Davis didn’t do his homework here, and maybe MTV can stage a Battle Royale for the crown.

As I digress, first let’s figure out where this word first came from. Few realize the word has been around since 2002, dating back to an issue of XLR8R magazine that had a cover story on production outfit Horsepower Productions. Horsepower Productions came up through the UK Garage & 2-step music scene, but had branched out in a new direction that featured more syncopated rhythms, and heavy use of sub-bass. Speeding up garage by a few bpm, and then composing drums at half-time, Horsepower Productions reinvigorated a genre that was starting to become stale. As this sound caught on in the pirate radio culture of the UK, more names like Kode9, Pinch, Zed Bias, Digital Mystikz, Loefah and Artwork started to hone in on the sound. I’m not here to argue whether Jonathan Davis, Timbaland or Skrillex knew this was happening, but documented media suggests XLR8R was one of the first American publications to take notice and expose the sounds to this side of the pond.

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