Sunnyvale

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Oh Look, It’s Your Near Future in Film

Rooftop Films Premiere 
Wednesday May 18 through August 2016 

The summer al-fresco screening series turns 20 years old this season, which officially makes Rooftop Films a millennial– meaning they’re addicted to their phones, underemployed, over-entitled, and why don’t they just grow up already and chain themselves to a cubicle desk and support the only real man in this race Donald Trump? Did that sound curmudgeonly enough to come from the desk of David Brooks or something? I figure the only way to drive the olds out of a universally beloved series such as Rooftop Films is to convince them either that it will somehow induce diabetic reactions and/or edema or that, like Snapchat, it’s something that only Millennials would understand.

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Week in Four Shows: Return of a Swell Maps Post-Punk Vet and a ‘Neo-Noir’ Record Release

(Flyer via Trans-Pecos)

(Flyer via Trans-Pecos)

Taylor Hoodlum Stevenson, Motorkiller, Boy Harsher, Soren
Friday April 1, 8 pm at Trans-Pecos: $8
The super-’80s Knight-Rider-esque dark electronica of Montreal’s own Taylor Hoodlum Stevenson has two main thrusts, er, so to speak. The first is led by aggressively cheesy/ hilariously weird rock-star vocal stylings– a kind of frontman-ery that demonstrates this dude has mastered and parodied that special testosterone-laden snarl popularized by the likes of Billy Idol– who himself bastardized what was once an oozing, sexed-up panther walk (perfected by Marc Bolan), and re-birthed it as an enormous, walking crotch-grab. The other side of Taylor Hoodlum Stevenson, the one that saves his music from treading too far into Weird Al territory, is his apparently very serious take on “horror disco,” which employs the analogue, lo-fi bits of Italo, Kraut, and proto-techno music we know and love, and pumps it up with modern danceability that’s cut with a late-late-late capitalist decadence– so rest assured, we can all dance to it without feeling like we’re breaking any cool codes.

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Your Future Holds Four Rad Shows, Don’t Miss Em

(Image via Cellular Chaos/ Facebook)

(Image via Cellular Chaos/ Facebook)

Cellular Chaos, ONO, Paint Thinner, Weeping Icon, Maximum Ernst
Thursday( March 31, 8 pm at Alphaville: $8
If real nasty, real legit, real rock music– something that rings almost of another era– is what you’re craving, then be sure to hit this Cellular Chaos show next week. You’ll be treated to a band that’s actually spewing straight-up, not-lame rock complete with real urgency, real instruments, and the sort of sweaty, underground-weary belly roar that you can never, ever fake. It’s too bad this particular species of music is in danger of becoming extinct right now– thanks to some truly demented mutations of the form, all too often manifesting as either that commercial-grade, cock-rock slop played in close proximity to vintage orange amps, a pair of leather pants, at least one divorce, and male-pattern baldness or, on the other hand, pip-pop compositions dreamed up by a pair of twee Grimaces wearing matching, hand-embroidered overall numbers, and Colonel Sanders’ ties whose highest aspiration is providing the OST for a Volkswagen commercial (sorry– is it too soon?). But there’s hope– Cellular Chaos spawns none of those rock n’ roll bastard children.

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Inside Sunnyvale, the East Williamsburg Venue Where DIY’s Gone Legit

A sprawling new bar and venue in East Williamsburg (Photo: Nicole Disser)

A sprawling new bar and venue in East Williamsburg (Photo: Nicole Disser)

It was bitterly cold last Thursday night, but a sandwich board outside of Sunnyvale promised: “Free shot if you prove you went to Pumps!” Aside from the strip club, some lonely looking art studios, and hot corn smells emitting from the tortilla factory, there’s not much nightlife at this industrial edge of East Williamsburg. But walking inside the multi-purpose venue that opened its doors earlier this month, I didn’t find a throng of strip club patrons clutching lap dance receipts (which they probably thought were only good for “business lunch” write-offs until now) and clamoring for oversized pours of Jose Cuervo. Thankfully.

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