There was a time when a trendy corporate chain store on Bedford Avenue was about as unimaginable as, well, a Donald Trump presidency. But boy have times changed, what with Apple, Whole Foods, Dr. Martens, Equinox and all the others doing their best to turn Bedford Avenue into something resembling Broadway between Houston and Canal. Now Uniqlo is jumping into the mix, by opening a pop-up store in the space that housed Spike Hill until the bar and music venue closed two years ago.
Just a couple of weeks after its return to Astor Place, Tony Rosenthal’s “Alamo” has been freed from the protective barrier that surrounded it while it awaited a final stage of restoration. As you can see, young lovers are already flocking to it and smooching under its aegis as if it’s the Summer of Love– which, by the way, is the year the Cube was installed as part of a citywide exhibition, Sculpture and the Environment.
If you thought Donald Trump would only win if hell froze over, you’re probably putting on a North Face jacket right about now and thinking, “So much for eating outdoors ever again!” Okay, that was an awkward segway from election talk, but come on, we gotta focus on the positive. And here’s a welcome development: the folks who operated summertime barbecue spot Pig Beach in Gowanus are soldiering on through the winter with a new pop-up, Pig Beach Burger. They’ve moved into a 1,900-square-foot indoor space adjacent their sprawling patio and are now turning out some enticing sandwiches in addition to the cheeseburgers they were serving during finer weather.
By now you may have heard that, hot on the heels of opening Westlight on the roof of Williamsburg’s shiny new William Vale hotel, Andrew Carmellini has opened his bottom-floor restaurant, Leuca. Grub Street noted that the Italian spot is serving “New York’s most elegant sundae,” which will surprise no one who’s had the decadent, over-the-top La Fantasia di Doppio Cioccolato at one of the chef’s other spots, Locanda Verde.
In 2002, “Lurker” Lou Sarowsky moved to New York City with his longtime friend and fellow Cape Cod native Zered Bassett, into a now infamous, windowless apartment in Lower Manhattan. Sarowsky dubbed it the “Vicious Cycle” house, and his crew kept up a rigorous schedule of skateboarding all day and filming for Bassett’s indie-skate video of the same name, followed by nights of smoking, drinking, and playing pool.
Photographer Nick McManus tore through Halloween like a bat out of hell, and came back with these party portraits.
Tonight, the theme of The Party by Ostbahnhof is Berlin underground. The house music is so loud that it punctuates bodies and walls. A heaving crowd populates the dance floor as video screens radiate kaleidoscopic images. Then, suddenly, the music stops. A woman in flapper pearls and a black lace teddy is covered from head to toe in powdery corpse paint. She raises a helicopter pilot’s microphone to her mouth and shouts a string of German words, brave and harsh-sounding.
The best party of the year has now already happened– sorry, everybody who didn’t make it to Bike Kill on Saturday. Organized once again by the Black Label Bicycle Club, the October tradition continued for the 13th year with all of the usual crazy stunts, freaky mutant bikes, loud music, dumb-ass costumes, vast amounts of booze, and tons of glorious mayhem.
It was a tough summer for Brooklyn’s DIY scene. There was the sudden shutdown of Palisades, followed by the closure of DIY-gone-legit venue the Acheron; then we lost Secret Project Robot, and soon enough, we’ll be saying RIP Aviv. The troubling number of ousters makes the latest news all the more welcome: Trans-Pecos, last night, announced that a new “annex” is on the way.
For a long time we’ve heard that analog film formats– for both making and viewing– are on the verge of mass extinction and very soon will be swallowed up by digital photography and filmmaking, never to be seen again. Recent events seem to confirm this prediction– in July, the last manufacturer of VHS players announced that it was quitting the game and shortly after, the Chinese factory where the clunky, black plastic boxes were made for Sanyo ceased production. The end came quietly, and some people were surprised that VHS consoles were still being made at all, since it had been nearly a decade since Eragon, an elf/fantasy movie, was the last ever to be released on VHS. Even before that, Fujifilm had stopped manufacturing motion picture film. As somebody once (pretentiously) told me, books, which are a lot like film in this context, are “nothing more than fetish objects” nowadays.
Thousands of people riding the J train at rush hour this morning experienced a total and complete shitstorm after an off-duty police officer allegedly assaulted a conductor while the train was pulling out of Essex Street station. According to the MTA, the conductor pulled the emergency break and brought the train to a standstill, all but one of the cars were stuck outside the station at 9:15 am– prime getting-to-work time for many riders. The J line ceased service for a full hour, leaving platforms packed with unhappy commuters.
Mopers of the world unite! A Morrissey dance party is coming to Littlefield, in Gowanus, on Saturday, Sept. 24. Okay, you’re probably lamenting: “But I haven’t got a stitch to wear.” Well, may we suggest the new Garbage Pail Kids sticker that portrays Meaty Morrissey in the grips of a nightmarish meat-and-greet? (Hey, it was either that or a double-decker bus crashing into Moz.)