Thursday, June 30, 2011

Weekend What's What 6/30-7/4


Is it finally officially summer? Fluctuating between 100+ degree days and 60 degree days has left us somewhat confused as of late. But fear not languishing lovelies, the forecast appears to be calling for hot, hot temps across the board this weekend (with a couple possible t-storms thrown in the mix to keep us in check, of course). Slap on something skin-bearing and make the scene, because sizzlin' summer in the city awaits!


Photo by Chris McDuffie for l'etoile


Twelve Dark Noons

@ Madame of the Arts
3401 Chicago Ave S

8 p.m. / $5

In addition to creating music videos for the gothy likes of Zola Jesus and Naked on the Vague and styling for both LCD Soundsystem and Devendra Banhart, Jacqueline Castel can now add directing a psychadelic, 12-chapter “film for the apocalypse” to her list of stellar credentials. Produced by Caleb Braaten (of Sacred Bones Records), “Twelve Dark Noons” features an original soundtrack from Naked on the Vague, artistic collaboration with Wet Hair’s Shawn Reed, a Jodorowsky color palate, and hoards of strange, mythical relics – everything a tantalizingly trippy experimental film should be. Catch the flick at sundown Thursday at Madame.

Click HERE for the Facebook event


The Lovely Dark/The Sunny Era/Hildur Victoria/Grant Cutler and the Gorgeous Lords

@ Hell’s Kitchen
80 9th St. S

10 p.m. / 21+ / $5

Hell’s Kitchen tonight will be taken over by some of the Twin Cities’ finest offerings in atmospheric rock music, as new group the Lovely Dark debuts their sound alongside world fusion phenoms the Sunny Era, ghost rockers Hildur Victoria, and Grant Cutler’s quietly haunting group GC & the Gorgeous Lords. In case you haven't heard, The Lovely Dark features members of Buffalo Buffalo Buffalo, Self-Evident, Buildings, and Power of 2, so we're pretty sure they know their way around an amplifier. Consider this a rare opportunity to see a brand new band perform their first show ever in the intimate underground lair known as Hell’s Kitchen.

Click HERE for the Facebook event


What's l'etoile admiring this week?

As the Fourth is upon us Toronto-based illustrator/designer Dave Murray reminds us what's really important in America: beer. In a style heavily influenced by typography, Cubism, pop culture and nu-portraits, Murray's latest series, aptly titled the “Beer Series,” highlights all his favorite “cold ones” – heresy be with anyone who doesn't include PBR on that list. Check out his feature on Juxtapoz Mag's site below.

Click HERE for more work from Dave Murray


Lowertown First Fridays

@ various galleries
Lowertown St Paul

5 – 10 p.m. / free

Sometimes you need a bit of an extra incentive to make the trek to St. Paul after a long work week. Enter incentive: Lowertown First Fridays. A monthly St. Paul art crawl, LFF features artists coop open studios, art shows, gallery openings and a chance to check out the hottest up-and-coming artists in the Lowertown loop. This month, don't miss amazing botanical glass art by Jules Keller in the Jax Bldg, watercolor art by Amy Bell, painting from Barbara Evans and T. Young Art and more! Plus, don't forget to hit up fresh local art from l'etoile faves DC Ice and Todd Peterson showcasing ICE T in the AZ Gallery. With DC Ice's “sinister but sweet” style, the vivid paintings of Peterson and the duo's combined coolness, be prepared for an exhibit that combats the summer sweat.

Click HERE for the First Friday's site



@ Sheraton Bloomington Hotel
7800 Normandale Blvd

Calling all sci-fi geeks, comic fans, fantasy hounds and distorted members of societal undergrounds (aka misfits), the time has come to throw on that adult-size spandex Green Hornet costume, bust out the light saber and for god's sake brush up on your Buffy vs. Angel history. Yes, the Midwest's favorite science fiction convention, the beloved CONvergence, is upon us which (of course) means a 4-day-long shameless play date with all things nerdy...We said “nerdy,” not “dirty.” This year's theme, “Tomorrow Through the Past,” is a kudos to yesterday's visions of tomorrow – think steampunk meets an acidy version of Disney's Tomorrowland. Expect an eclectic cast of guests including Babylon 5's Jason Carter, weird and wacky themed suites, art shows & silent auctions, a masquerade, dancing at Connie's Space Lounge, panel discussions, booze and much more. Believe us when we say, there's never a dull moment. See you there, and may the force be with you.

BONUS: Our party room suggestions? Hit up the Black Lodge room for a Twin Peaks-themed odyssey complete with oodles of cold PBR beer. Looking for something a bit more prim and proper? Hit up the Dr. Who-themed Tardis Tearoom for a Pimm's Cup or some, uh, actual tea.

Click HERE for the CONvergence site

Photo by Stephen Stephens


Hope of the Union

@ Altered Esthetics
1224 Quincy Street NE

7 p.m. / Free

Far left or far right, apathetic or independent, disenchanted or still chanting “Yes We Can,” pretty much all of us can agree that politics are a pretty much a quagmire. The bright side: What artist doesn’t love a good debunking, doesn’t thrive on asking tough questions. making big statements, and otherwise sticking it to The Man. creative discourse style? Just ask the folks at Altered Esthetics, whose latest exhibit, “Hope of the Union,” is a collection of nonpartisan artistic sound offs relating to our mercurial political atmosphere. Taking in to consideration a variety of movements and stances, the photographs, drawings, and paintings are sure to stir things up. The exhibit opens Friday, complete with Pin the Tail/Tusk on the Donkey/Elephant.

Click HERE for this art event and more at


Shutdown Street Party

location announced Thursday night HERE

9 p.m. – 12 a.m. / free

Talk of a government shutdown has been all the buzz lately, and for good reason. Thousands will be affected and our world as we know it will function a bit off-kilter. But as any lover of anarcho/social political can tell you, that's not always a bad thing. In fact, the brains behind the local Shutdown Street Party have gone so far as to say it's a cause for celebration. Tonight, grab some pals, art supplies, noisemakers and your best ideas and take to the streets refining what we want our urban community to look like sans an ultra hands-on government. Prepare to debate, debacle and, of course, dance. Because it ain't a revolution if ya can't dance to it, right?
Click HERE for more info


The Knotwells LP Release Show

@ The Hexagon
2600 27th Ave. S.

9:30 p.m. / 21+ / Free

Banjo, mandolin, drums, guitar, and assorted handmade instruments by band luthier “the Joel” blend and clash to create The Knotwells’ sound. It’s one of gruff vocals and woodsy rebellion, what might happen if bluegrass, punk, and country died and someone picked their bones, started strumming and playing with what was left. Friday, the local sextet will release their latest LP, “The Highway Won’t Hide You,” with a show at the Hexagon. Get there early to snag your copy and hear tunes from local boogie n’ blues aces Black Audience and the howling, string-slinging trio Brute Heart.

Click HERE for the Hex site


What's l'etoile looking at on the web this week?

In Donny Darko, Drew Barrymore opened a can of worms when she quoted a Spanish linguist:” “What could be more musical than your word cellar-door?” English language musings aside, the question inspired this week’s cool link: a gorgeous, little-something-for-everyone zine based in the UK. Published quarterly, Cellardoor Magazine covers art, culture, music, fashion, DIY, beauty, and everything in between with edge, quirk, keenness, and a dash of British sass. Case in point: an illustration in the current issue jazzes up a certain regal mantra, proclaiming “Keep Calm and Copy Kate.” Adorbs!

Peep the latest via Issuu below or visit their site HERE.


Adam Turman's Garage Art Sale

@ Adam’s garage
5530 Vermont Street

9 a.m. to 5 p.m. / Free

Grandmas, pack-rats, and vintage junkies everywhere agree: few things are more exhilarating than a good garage sale. But you don’t have to fall in to one of those categories to love what will be spilling out of local print master Adam Turman’s garage this Saturday: posters starting at $5. From “scratches and dents” and test prints to original lineart and postcards to whatever else he’s scrounged up from the studio, all sorts of odds and ends will be yours to browse, buy, and mark your bedroom wall as one belonging to a true Minneapolitan. There will also be, Turman says, bevs that rhyme with “deer.” On second thought, maybe leave grams at home.

Click HERE for the Facebook event


Storymaking w/ Twin Cities Runoff

@ Walker Open Field
1750 Hennepin Ave

3:30 – 5 p.m. / Free

Storytime with the Walker? What could be better? You're invited to kick off your Fourth of July weekend with Twin Cities Runoff celebrating one of our favorite freedoms – freedom of speech – laying in the Open Field's perfect backyard. Enjoy classic storytelling games like Surrealist parlor word game, Exquisite Corpse; sentence drawing sentence and the game of 1000 blank white cards; or flaunt your knowledge of local media culture with TCR's take on MadLibs, TCR-libs. And after you've spend your day frolicking around the sculpture garden and perusing through John Water's recent hodgepodge exhibit, we just know you'll be primed with an original, gloriously avant-garde tale to tell.

Click HERE for the Walker site


The CandyLand Mini Ball

@ The Exchange
3405 Chicago Ave S

7 p.m / $5

Anyone who idolized Queen Frostine as a child has secretly fantasized about traipsing through a candy cane forest en route to a CandyLand ball. Or maybe its just us. Anyways, The Exchange has made our dreams come true with the CandyLand Mini- Ball, happening Saturday. While there won’t be a living Molasses Bog or that creepy Lord Licorice, there will be cash prizes for the best candy-colored costumes and props in a variety of categories, each open, and open-armed to all gender identities. The competitions: Foot Fetish (gum drop-colored galoshes, anyone?), School Boy/Girl Realness (collared tops and lollipops), Runway (couture with a candy prop), Face, Vogue Femme (sweet or sour? Be ready to catwalk.), and Bizarre Bizarre (like Gaga’s meat dress, but with candy). See you there, sugars!

Click HERE for the Facebook event


C.L.A.P. presents The Chambermaids/Nice Purse/Night Moves

@ Kitty Cat Klub
315 14th Ave. SE

9:30 p.m. / 21+ / $5

Chicks rule at the Dinkytown staple tonight, as an evening sponsored by the all new girl-powered zine, C.L.A.P. (Creative Ladies are Powerful) rocks the house. Pick up a copy of their Summer issue and enjoy what will surely be an entertaining set from psychedelic indie rockers the Chambermaids, the upbeat folky tunes of Nice Purse, and the chilled out anthems of Night Moves. This will, of course, devolve into the same hot, sweaty, crazy dance night that we have all come to love the KCK for, and you should really take advantage of this golden summer time when school is out and (most of) the douchebags have found other Saturday night bars to slug back their High Life. Don’t let this chance slip past you—those dingy, plushy corner chairs can mean magic, especially when you’ve got Night Moves whispering their gentle choruses at you from the dance floor and a copy of C.L.A.P. in your mitts.

Click HERE for the Facebook event


What's l'etoile listening to this week?

In the bad boy-saturated world of indie garage and post-punk, a girl has to play pretty seriously. It just isn’t girly to be a rockstar. Not that The Coathangers – a tattooed, pierced, grizzly-haired, doll-eyed, all-girl riot from Atlanta – ever gave an eff about that. With no musical education whatsoever and their first round of instruments purchased as cheaply as possible from a pawn shop, they’ve been laughing at the rules from day one – and snapping up headlining gigs left and right with the likes of the Thermals and the late These Arms Are Snakes. But that’s not to say their obstinate, jarring un-love songs (with titles such as “Go Away” and “Trailer Park Boneyard”) don’t deserve to headline, if only for The Coathangers’
penchant for making wasted youth sound so cool. Now that you’re informed, go rock out with them tonight at the Triple Rock.

Click HERE for the Coathanger's site


Ten Second Film Festival

@ Soap Factory
514 2nd St SE

doors 8 p.m., fireworks 10:30 p.m.
films to follow fireworks / free

Don't be so quick to judge the fellows glued to their iPhones. Chances are they're shooting their ten second claim to fame. That's right, the Ten Second Film Fest is back with more bite-sized mega-pixels to make you laugh, cringe or cry. From appeasing the most persnickety cinephile to the YouTube fanatic, the 10 Sec Fest is the ultimate in “uncensored, uninhibited and unexpected” shorts. Daringly dubbed the “Best Festival of the Twin Cities 2011” by City Pages, the fest is a “summer staple” and THE place to be for the Fourth. Head down early to snag a great spot, enjoy tunes by DJ Jam E-Z, catch the epic St. Anthony Main fireworks and take in the top 100 ten second films judged by 89.3 The Current's Barb Abney, Andy Sturdevant and Carolyn Swiszcz.

Click HERE for the Soap Factory site


Dillinger 4th of July

@ Triple Rock Social Club
629 Cedar Ave S

8pm / 21+ / Free

Dillinger 4's annual 4th of July throwdown at the Triple Rock has become as much an institution as the band themselves in these here parts, having gone a whopping eight years without missing a proverbial beat. And we can't think of a better way to celebrate the birth of our nation than with D4's brand of reckless, alcohol-soaked punk rawk. The incredible power and energy behind this band’s live performance always leaves minds blown and ears ringing. Earplugs highly recommended! Likeminded locals the Slow Death and San Diego-based rockers Dan Padilla open.

Click HERE for the Triple Rock site

Editor in Chief: Kate Iverson // Contributors: Juleana Enright, Tara Sloane, Natalie Gallagher, Kate Iverson, Robyn Lewis, Jahna Peloquin, Lauren Gantner

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Weekend What's What 6/23-6/25


It's a gay-la affair! The Twin Cities shines as one of the largest Pride festivals in the country, and we think that's definitely something to be proud of. This weekend is all about love, respect, and partying like rockstars, so get with the glitz and don't be afraid to rock those sequins!



Dail's Cookbook: A Gastronomical Inquisition

@ Ritz Theatre
345 13th Ave NE

8 p.m. / $27

If you've ever been curious about spending an evening dining with Dali, now's your chance. Get a mouthful of surrealism tonight as the Ritz and local troupe Zorongo Flamenco Dance Theatre present Dali's Cookbook: A Gastronomical Inquisition – a “creative mash-up” cooked up by Zorongo's Susana diPalma and Ballet of the Dolls' Myron Johnson and Robert Skafte. Based on the cookbook Les Diners de Gala written by Salvador Dali, the 5-course Dalinian dance salmagundi features dance and music of the absurd variety. After the performance, stay for a gala bash benefiting Zorongo and the Dolls featuring a live salsa band, cash bar – with plenty of lively Spanish reds – and the kind of nonsensical dizzy tomfoolery Dali would be proud of.

Click HERE for more info


48-Hour Film Project Awards Show

@ Riverview Theater
3800 42nd Ave S

7 p.m. / $15

A couple of weeks ago hundreds of rogue filmmakers, actors, editors, costume designers, set designers, and various film-types jumped on board for the annual 48-Hour Film Project. The challenge? To write, film, and edit a short film based on a surprise genre within a mere 48 hours. Think that sounds not-so-hard? Think again. A weekend of no sleep, high stress, and gun-to-the-head creative pressure was on, and tonight's finale awards show honors the top 10 films that were nominated for "Best Film Award" and "Best Student Film". Awards will be doled out by a roster of local celeb presenters including Scott Seekings, Colin Covert, and Viva & Jerry, and two after parties will await post-show. Stick around in the Riverview lobby where there will be two (free) kegs of Surly beer to chug while you rock out to tunes from The Farewell Circuit and watch a performance of all the Lord of the Rings movies condensed into 9 minutes by Live Action Set. Then hop across the street to the Riverview Wine Bar for more sippin' and socializin'. Viva la independent film!

Click HERE for the Facebook event


What's l'etoile admiring this week?

Dark glam and trans icon Venus de Mars is not only a whiz at shredding guitar, spinning records, and dressing to kill in leather, she’s also brilliant with a ballpoint pen. Serving as a visual journal of sorts, Venus's ink drawings on archival notebook paper are, in a word, resplendent--despite being of but a few shades. Scenes of metamorphosis, transcendence, and bondage are depicted in minute detail; human, often transgender figures are interwoven with natural elements – branches, birds, roses, moons. Spiritual and kinetic, they convey a sense of vulnerability and immediacy that perhaps only a pen and personal notebook could achieve.

Click HERE for the collection of drawings


Uptown Pride Block Party

@ Bryant Lake Bowl
810 W Lake St

6 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. / 18+ / Free

The 7th annual installment of Bryant Lake Bowl’s Pride party brings out the big guns. Get your face paint on early and shimmy down to BLB promptly to catch the entirety of the phenomenal affair, complete with musical performances by the spirited Maria Isa and soulful Chastity Brown, plus the deliciously goth-style glam rock of Venus DeMars & All the Pretty Horses, the talented Mrs. Smith, hard-hitting indie rockers Pennyroyal, and a cabaret number from Dykes Do Drag. All this, and it’s held together by lovely/sassy emcee Foxy Tann. This might just be the gayest show in town, y’all, and it’s going down rain or shine—so maybe invest in some Pride-worthy galoshes, yeah? Street entertainment will be happening courtesy of the North Star Roller Girls, Familia Skateshop, and dance collective Epitome-No Question. A portion of the proceeds from this event benefit OutFront MN, an organization with the goal of making Minnesota a positive place for GLBT persons. Go now, get thee gayest self to BLB for what will certainly be a colorful night.

Click HERE for more info


Mass Portrait: New Work by Anna Tsantir & Dan Luedtke

@ XYandZ
3258 Minnehaha Ave. S.

7 p.m. / Free

When it comes to printmaking, local artists Anna Tsantir and Daniel Luedke share a penchant for abstraction. But when it comes to style, the two take on very different personas. For Tsantir, elements of symmetry, sparse coloring, and manipulated imagery serve as metaphors for a larger vision. In Luedke’s work, vivid color, witty juxtapositions, and futuristic ideas converge via handmade silkscreens and installation pieces. Together, the artists have put together Mass Portrait, opening Friday at South Minneapolis contemporary art gallery XYandZ. Both individual and collaborative pieces will be featured, an overall reflection on just how varied artistic methods can be, even within the same medium. And fear not for straying off your Pride Weekend itinerary--Dan Luedtke was recently named one of the "8 Most Important LGBT Leaders" in the Twin Cities by City Pages.

Click HERE for this art event and more at


Identities Explored: A Celebration of Art from the GLBT Community

@ Hennes Art Company
1607 Hennepin Ave

6 – 11 p.m. / Free

Alright, so it's Pride. Booze, dancing and probably a few regretted (or non-regretted) make-out sessions are a given. But don't forget about the art! Tonight, peep awesome work from a few talented locals in the GLBT community. Opening night features a DJ set from ATPH's Venus in the Vinyl Venus Space Lounge and an opportunity to hang with author David Cook who will be on-hand signing copies of his anecdote-ridden humor novel, Lemonade for the Lawnboy. Featuring work from artists Connie Beckers, David Cook, Venus DeMars, Perry Ingli, Zoe Keller, Nick Minenko, James Michael Lawrence, Rachel Orman, Sarah Ruehmann, Christine Stark, Mike Welton, Matthew Wettlaufer, and Larry Miller. Plus, check back all weekend long for rotating live music and events!

Click HERE for this art event and more at


Tropical Goth!

@ Nick and Eddie
1612 Harmon Place

7:30 p.m. / 18+ / $5

Nick and Eddie is once again bringing the party, and, it being Pride weekend and all, you can bet they aren’t doing it quietly. Their Friday night dance party is a “tropical goth” themed Pride celebration, wherein the provocateurs of the restaurant-bar-nightclub call for “rainbow warriors”, “color fetishists”, “pattern lickers”, “fabric divers”, “colored fur traders”, “banana smokers”, “fruit munchers”, “salad tossers”, “blow poppers”, and many more varieties of people. Talk about tasting the rainbow. So, please leave your tried-and-true skinny black ensemb behind for this evening, and do what you must to show your true colors—we’re talking more than tropical shirts here, folks. Get into this with body painting, outfits built out of piñatas, things that glow, things that glitter, things that would give your grandmother a heart attack. There are prizes for the top three costumes, so put some effort into it, yo. (And if you really are too lazy to figure your party pants out before Friday, fear not—special guest skin colorist Jens Werner will be there to help you out.) There is also a stellar local lineup of live music featuring Two Lions, Chord and The Fawn, Mother’s Tongue (also celebrating the release of their first album this evening), Chelsea Boys, and BadNRad, plus performance art by the First Housewives of Hennepin Couty, Tomahawk Tassels, HomerrIHOMO, Dustin Maxwell, and so many more, along with a film screening from Alex Ward. The night is MC’d by the BOYZZZ of FASHIONASTY, and they are always a thrill and a half.

Click HERE for the Facebook event


The Copper Field EP Release

@ The Aster Café
125 Main St.

9 p.m. / $5

When he isn’t strumming out frenetic electro-pop with fellow Mercurial Rage members, Michael Grey is plucking indie folk tunes even the die-hardest of Mason Jennings fans could tip their straw hats to. Under the name “The Copper Field,” Grey and Joe Christenson weave honest and stylistically wide-ranging ballads, made distinct by Grey’s compelling, albeit not exactly beautiful voice. See what we mean Friday at The Aster, where the boys will be performing in celebration of the release of their debut EP, The Standard and Poor’s. Christian and Jon of Blue Sky Blackout will also be putting on a rare acoustic set. It’d be a crying shame for any local music-vore to miss this one.

Click HERE for the Facebook event


Ostracon Release

@ Honey
205 E Hennepin Ave

9 p.m. - 2 a.m. / 18+ / $5

We've seen the wave of the future, and it is Ostracon and their manipulated electronic sideshow. Tonight, don't miss the debut release from locals John Keston of and drummer Graham O'Brien. Joining in the fun are a fleet of uber-talented locals including Dosh, Smyth, Ghostband, and the live painting antics of Rogue Citizen. As usual, Honey will be packed with dapper ladies and gentlemen sipping delicious cocktails and snacking on yummy bites. Duck out for a late supper upstairs at Ginger Hop if you need a break from the crowd.

Click HERE for the Facebook event


What's l'etoile looking at on the web this week?

Clearly, Minneapolis is the place to be for a Pride to remember. We do host the 3rd largest fest in the country, after all! To help you maximize all of this weekend’s goings-on, we’ve rounded up a list of loud and proud local links that give the 411 on all things Pride 2011. Start with local illustrator Kevin Cannon’s hyper-detailed map (can you spot two kissing baseball players, a gushing cherry, or a dude with a rainbow Mohawk?) of places to dance, drink, and show your colors this Pride. Too overwhelming? City Pages also has a full listing here. For those of you looking for Pride events that aim for political change, particularly through community awareness and discussion, has put together an “Alterna-Pride” guide PLUS a comprehensive Pride party guide penned by l'etoile's own Jahna Peloquin. Metro Mag chimes in with a well-rounded guide to artsy Pride events and a roundup of GLBT bars in the Twin Cities. And no Pride season – or summer, for that matter – would be complete without a visit to Lavender Mag’s Summer of Pride site, featuring GBLT events throughout this weekend and the entire summer. Last but not least, check out the Twin Cities Pride site, which has the most comprehensive list of what’s happening in Loring Park, including set times and vendors.


39th Annual Twin Cities Pride Fest

@ Loring Park

10 a.m. - 10 p.m. (Saturday), 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. (Sunday) /
Beer Garden $5, Concert $10 Adv, $15 At the Gate

The Advocate recently named Minneapolis as the gayest city in America, so it's no surprise that the Twin Cities Pride Fest is a legendary event. Whether L, G, B or T or just boring old straight, this weekend is chance to celebrate the incredible diversity that makes our community so great. Highlights of the weekend include Mega Shark vs. Giant Octopus actress (and 80s pop icon) Deborah Gibson headlining the Saturday night concert. Opening acts include local disco outfit Boogie Wonderland and burlesque troupe Lili's Burlesque. A giant outdoor yoga session will be held at Walker's Field on Saturday morning. And Sunday morning's infamous Pride Parade is a joyous and raucous event not to be missed. And...oh-s0-much more.

Click HERE for the Pride site


BYOB Minneapolis

@ Thorp Building
1620 Central Ave

9 p.m. / Free

BYOB (Bring Your Own Beamer) is a series of one-night-only-exhibitions hosting artists and their projectors. The BYOB concept was initiated by Anne de Vries & Rafael Rozendaal in Berlin and has since popped up in cities around the world, both large and small. Saturday's Minneapolis edition is presented by Permanent Art & Design Group in collaboration with curators Travis Stearns and Josh Clancy. Over 30 local, national, and international digital artists will create a pop up projection exhibit within the Thorp Building's vacant 12,000 sq foot warehouse space in Northeast Minneapolis. Expect to see work from peeps like Mike Perry, Playatta, Michael Cina, YAMAHAHA, Eric Timothy Carlson (of Hardland/Heartland), and many more. Featuring a performance by Elite Gymnastics.

Click HERE For the BYOB Minneapolis site


Crash the Ball

@ The Depot (under the shed)
225 3rd Ave S

8 p.m. to 1 a.m. / $75-$125

If there were ever a good excuse to don your ball gown best, tonight's the night. A young patron-focused companion piece to the Minnesota Orchestra's annual black tie gala, Crash the Ball promises an evening of swank, music, food, and plenty of free drinks. Held outdoors under the "Shed" (trust us, it's classier than it sounds) you'll be treated to tunes a la beat curator Jonathan Ackerman. A silent auction featuring oodles of gift certificates, fancy bottles of booze, jewelry, and more will be open for perusal, at bid points that won't have you running for the hills (or the open bar). Later in the evening join the fun with the big ticket gala patrons for a dancetastic set from The Sevilles. Proceeds go to benefit the Minnesota Orchestra's educational programs so it's a win-win: you get to have a fancy time and support an amazing cause while doing it. Not to mention, we're all about crashing parties.

Click HERE for the Crash the Ball site


BNLX EP #6 Release Party

@ Cause
3001 Lyndale Ave S

9:30 p.m. / 21+ / $6

If you need a rock n' roll respite between pride events this weekend, local superstars BLNX will be celebrating the release of their sixth EP at Cause tonight. Hubby/wife duo Ed and Ashley Ackerson are a collective powerhouse of sound, with a spirited back n' forth chemistry that calls to mind X's John Doe and Exene Cervenka. Factor in BNLX's signature trippy light show alongside a killer starting lineup featuring Red Pens and Party House, and we thinks you've got yourself a pretty awesome, eardrum-damaging Saturday night.

Click HERE for the Facebook event


Gaywatch: 10th Anniversary Beach Party

@ Jetset
115 1st St. N.

9 p.m. / 21+ / Free

If you’re like us, one of your earliest TV memories was of a beach in Hawaii, or rather, of shirtless men way more tan and muscular than any you’d ever seen ogling bikini-clad women who looked like your Barbies. Promising to be just as unforgettable, generation-defining, and dead sexy is Gaywatch, a beach party to celebrate Jetset’s tenth birthday. There may not be UV rays, but there will be DJs – specifically Bryan Gerrard and JR. You’ve been waiting for the perfect opportunity to don that red swimsuit, and here it is. Be practicing your hair flip, too.

Click HERE for the Facebook event


Attitude City

@ Club Jager
923 Washington Ave

10 p.m. / 21+ / Free

One of our favorite monthly dance jams is here! The debonair boys of Attitude City are at it again with their installation of super sexy music and stylish mayhem. Join the Jeff Dubois and special guest Ben Hribar (aka Benny Lojak) for a night of delicious dance beats and Clubhouse Jager’s tasty cocktails. Not only is it free, but we guarantee that you’ll have an awesome time making eyes at and dancing all up on some of Minneapolis’ foxiest.

Click HERE for the Facebook event


Pegasus Haunted Haus

@ Madame
3401 Chicago Ave

10 p.m. / Free

The fabulousness is dialed up to 11 this weekend, and the Pegasus Haunted Haus is no exception. If you want to freak dance the night away, this should be your Saturday night home base. Because the glamour, it will haunt you. Bust spooky moves to DJs Beeth Cake and Jes Buns and the "bat pulse" of Sacred Necklace. Bring your dancing shoes, and your courage, as the peeps over at madame claim "Hear Cher’s Believe over and over and over and over again in the bathrooms. Watch uber-clone zombie gays drink in unison to the new Britney. Get an orange tan in a brand new coffin tanning booth." And who can argue with that?

BONUS: If you have the soul of an exhibitionist, shoot a message to saucy event putter-oners the Revolting Queers to sign up to do a performance of your own!

Click HERE for the Facebook event


Pride Parade

@ along Hennepin Avenue

11 a.m. / Free

If we know how to do one thing in this city, it’s have a gay old time, and few events are more telling than the annual Pride Parade. Hang out along Hennepin Avenue Sunday for a 2-hour spectacle of costumes and queens, leather and flags, tight-and-brightly-clad supporters, motorcycles, candy, and rainbow colors galore. Arrive early to get a good spot; last year’s parade drew in over 125,000 people. Before you go, make sure you stop in at Bitch n’ Brunch at Seven (9 a.m. / $25-$30, $10 admission only), where queen extraordinaire Bitch Flowers will be dishing up some of the sassiest drag around, or at Memoirs of A GAYsha (10 a.m. / $20), a dim sum brunch and “gaysha” themed party at Tom Pham’s Wondrous Azian Kitchen, which will continue after the parade and into the night with drink specials and a Tea Dance with DJs Shiek and Jonathan Ackerman.

Click HERE for the Pride site

Monday, June 20, 2011

In Review: Rock the Garden 2011

By Natalie Gallagher
Photos by Erik Hess//content share via How Was The Show

Rock the Garden manages every year to be that place where Twin Citizens run into absolutely every single person they have known since their tenure on “the scene” began, and Saturday’s massive music bash did not disappoint in that regard. I watched as the sea of concert-goers schlepped around in their galoshes and ponchos, shuffling from the beer line to the Chef Shack line, alternating between muttering about the shitty weather and repeating uplifting phrases like, “It’s not actually that bad!”

The weather certainly had an effect on the fashion for the day, as looking out across the field at 4 p.m., amidst a gentle wash of droplets, all I could see was a colorful ocean of yellow, pink, and blue ponchos in varying shades. To some degree, it felt like we were all musical refugees and the Walker was our camp; everyone looked vaguely pathetic and bedraggled, not boozed enough to really enjoy anything.

Nothing a bucket of fries and a pint or eight of trusty Summit can’t fix, really.

So Tapes ‘n’ Tapes kicked off the musak moshing at 4:15 on the dot, and they brought back a lot of material from The Loon and Outside, which was great for the half-committed crowd that assembled itself for them. I spent most of my time accidentally stepping on people and then realizing I knew them.

As the day wore on, the terrain of the Walker field became wetter and muddier as the rain was like a slutty slutski, coming in and out in a veiled tease of what might come if we stuck around long enough. Some people ditched the poncho in favor of the very boho garbage bag ripped with armholes, and it was like seeing the rise and fall of a fashion trend within 7 hours as the rain gear became increasingly more elaborate as people had time to kill before anything really exciting happened. I saw one girl wearing what appeared to be a Victorian ensemble assembled out of three black garbage bags and a plastic ribbon. (At the end of the night, when the weather eventually tapered off to a nice damp, sticky, non-drizzling state, these magic rain outfits would disappear to reveal, uh, jeans.)

So while the crowd was caught somewhere between fear of storms, hope for sun, and buzzily trying to locate the single vodka tent, Booker T. Jones introduced himself to the young audience with the funky jams that made him legend, deliciously delving into “Green Onions” three songs into his set. It’s the kind of slow-jamming, soulful sort of music that sounds like one of the most face-meltingly hot days of summer instead of one of the muggiest days of fake-summer, but all the same, Booker T. is a Hall of Famer and worth a listen any damn day.

By the time Neko Case took the stage, the music refugees had been stuffed with enough corndogs and booze to blearily make it through her whiny set. The Tweeps, press peeps, and all other peeps generally agree on this: Neko Case bantered too much, and it wasn’t even good banter. It was like, sarcastic “oh sorry to be an afternoon bummer” snarky banter, said quietly whilst she was tuning her guitar, and it just came off as insincere and snotty. Also, she appeared to have some kind of root or plant attached to her hair. Or maybe it was just four different barrettes. Anyway, kind of disappointing, though hearing “Man Eater” was rad.

Whilst waiting for My Morning Jacket to take the stage, the rain clouds mysteriously disappeared. At the top of the hill, there was a fantastic view of the downtown skyline, with steam rising up through the crevices between the buildings like…well, I’ll let you take the analogy wherever you want it to go.

One of the more memorable moments of the evening happened when the Current’s Mary Lucia came over the PA to announce that there was a lost child named Dominic. Parents could claim him, said Lucia, “ironically enough, at the vodka tent”. That’s summer in the city for you, I guess.

For all the relative lackluster and general muckiness of the day, MMJ really nailed it. They are one of the most appropriate outdoor festival bands, and helped redeem RTG 2011 from its previous two years with some rather uninspiring headliners (2009 featured the Decemberists, 2010 with the lukewarm MGMT). The mass of concert goers took to them well; ponchos were ditched once and for all, and as My Morning Jacket closed with the essential “One Big Holiday”, the good and hearty people of Minneapolis (and beyond) exited, happily buzzed, with a young night ahead of them.


Our own Jahna Peloquin also took some crowd photos of the hotties in the crowd:

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Weekend What's What 6/16-6/18


Yep, it's Father's Day weekend! And while you certainly aren't expected to cramp your stylish lifestyle by hangin' with your pops all the live-long-weekend, the least you can do is get the lovable old coot a card, right? Right. Between arty parties, outdoor fests, and bike-centric folly be sure to tell your pappy you heart him, whether he's near or far!



Third Thursday: Body Art

@ Mpls Institute of Arts
2400 Third Ave S

6 p.m. to 9 p.m. / Free

If you hear “hey man, nice tats” on the regular, then tonight’s soiree is definitely up your ink-scarred alley. Join the MIA’s Third Thursday series as they present an evening dedicated to awesome tattoos and the artists that ink them. Peep local body art submitted as part of Metromix Twin Cities “Show Us Your Tats” contest and flaunt your own for a chance to win prizes, not to mention “Kodak” the night in Metromix’s photobooth. Did someone say live tattooing? Don’t worry, they're just temporary. The talented staff at Uptown Tattoo and Mehndi by Angela will be on-hand all night long painting out temp tats and henna to even the ficklest of fickles, or watch as the pros ink a real tattoo in progress. Enjoy live music by rockabilly tunesmiths the Reckless Ones and perhaps a couple drinks from the cash bar. While you’re there, don’t forget to check out the current MAEP exhibitions, “A Field Guide to Snow and Ice” and “Ornamental Invasion” featuring new work by Paula McCartney and Liz Miller, complete with an art talk featuring special guests Cheryl Olman, Andy Sturdevant and Marc Swackhamer starting at 7 p.m.

Click HERE for the MIA site


What's l'etoile looking at this week?

It hardly comes as a shock to us that the wife of No Wave cult filmmaker turned erotic photographer, Richard Kern, would be any less progressively free than her husband. A book editor by day, Wawrzyniak spends her free time as a photographer, performance artist and food art provocateur. Performing what are usually described as “wildly unsettling” and “uncomfortable” video documentations, the Polish artist’s latest installation and video projects include an ode to the olfactory, an intimate take on the artist’s essence and a video short titled “Chocolate” where the Wawrzyniak basically lays immobilized as rich, dark chocolate is poured onto her. And as for as sexy as it may sound, it’s actually rather disturbing. In another short, she stands still as children – including her real-life stepson – squirt ketchup on her. What's not to love?

Click HERE for the site


Full Gallop

@ Allee Metro Chic Boutique
179 Snelling Ave N
St. Paul

6:30 p.m. shopping & wine, 7:30 p.m. performance / $25

A shopping excursion AND the theater? No, it’s not a local rendition of Legally Blonde; it’s something much better. Tonight, join the Les Reines Formidables Theater Company for a journey into their latest production, Full Gallop directed by Melissa Hart. Based on the life of iconic, longtime Vogue Editor, Diana Vreeland, and her abrupt fall from fashion, the performance follows Vreeland as she attempts to dinner-party her way back to the top performed as a one-woman-show by local luminary, Sally Wingert. Head down to Alle early for wine and shopping and stay for a reception and more shopping – if you dare! Space and performances are limited so snag your tickets fast!

Click HERE for tickets


Sideshow Soo: Interactive Carnival Closing Party

@ SooVAC
2638 Lyndale Ave S

7 p.m. to 11 p.m. / Free

If you missed the opening, tonight's the night to make all your whimsical wishes come true! We can hardly believe that beloved Uptown gallery space, the Soo Visual Arts Center, is 10 years old. And like any other red-blooded American 10-year-old, the Soo is enchanted by mysticism, magic, monkeyshine mischief and – of course – unicorns. So, what better way to celebrate their decade-long art stint than in carnival-style, crammed with all the oddities, wonderment and curiosities a 10-year-old can handle. Rescue lost unicorns and spear stuffed animal wiener dogs with antlers, play an intense table tennis game, and much, much more.

Click HERE for the SooVAC site


Patio Nights at City House featuring Communist Daughter

@ City House
Shepard Rd. & Old Chestnut St.
St. Paul

7:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. / All Ages / Free

The Minnesota Museum of American Art may have lost their Kellogg Boulevard space a couple years back, but that's not stopping them from resurrecting the popular Patio Nights series. Hosted at the City House, you'll be privy to summer performances featuring live music from a rotating local musicians along with phenomenal local food available for purchase. This Friday, you can enjoy a breathtaking view of the Mississippi River in what was once an endangered Minnesota Historic site (the City House has been recently restored by the St. Paul Riverfront Corporation) and the exceptionally rocktastic sounds of Communist Daughter, along with food from 128 Café. Guests will also be able to view a 3D sculpture by Jim Campbell entitled “Scattered Light”, formed by nearly 1,600 LED lights on a huge piece spanning 80 feet wide, 20 feet high, and 16 feet deep. This night will truly be a quadfecta of Minnesota’s greatest offerings—nature, food, art, and, of course, music. Take advantage of it.

Click HERE for more info


Moments in Hip Hop

@ Nicademus Art
225 N Snelling Ave
St. Paul

7 p.m. to 10 p.m. / Free

Hop, pop, and lock on over to Nicademus Art tonight for a hip-hop-centric exhibit featuring the keen stencil-work of one Taylor Lindgren. See custom stencil renditions of rap icons from all walks, including Brother Ali, Gucci, Grandmaster Flash and many more. A must-see for hip hop heads, this nostalgic exhibit will surely warm the cockles of your rap-lovin' heart. Not to mention, openings at Nicademus are always a blast!

Click HERE for the Facebook event


2011 Bridesmaid Bar Crawl

Various Locations
starts at Seven Sushi and Steakhouse
700 Hennepin Ave

7 p.m. – midnight / $20 / 21+

Tonight, it pays to be “always a bridesmaid, never a bride” as the first ever MPLS Bridesmaid Bar Crawl kicks off. Almost as scary as the zombie pub crawl – just with more pastels and sashays – tonight's Bridesmaid Pub Crawl invites ladies to dust off that old bridesmaid dress you'd maybe rather forget or pick up a cheap one from Ragstock and hit the town on the hunt for drinks, prizes and fun. A mere $20 includes a raffle ticket to win over $2000 in prizes including a Badgley Mischka Couture Nikki Gloss Clutch & .5 carat diamond earrings and drink specials at bars The Imperial Room, The Local and Drink. Plus, to start your evening extra gussied up, head to Smart and Chic Beauty Lounge for a free faux lash application. Bridesmaids are the new bride.

Click HERE for more info


The Lovely Creatures Cabaret: Pride Extravaganza

@ Ground Zero
15 4th St NE

10 p.m. / 18+/$8 or 21+/$6

If you have yet to experience the glory of a cabaret performance, this Friday would be the appropriate time to introduce yourself to the format. In honor of Pride month, the darlings of the Lovely Creatures Cabaret troupe will be taking over Ground Zero in Northeast. There will be dancing and acrobatics in the extreme—burlesque, bellydancing, and circus feats, featuring performances by Kajal Bellydance Co., Barbara Gordon, El Le Faunt, and aerialist Zyra, with guest appearances from the Illuminettes, Mia Malone and Sadie Simone, Apollo Hawthorne, Naptime Note and Signora Luce Della Focolare. The evening will be emceed by the always entertaining Hugo Kalision and Mz. Kizzy Tulips. This is a top-quality variety show with vaudevillian roots, executed with a dazzling exuberance that will leave you breathless. (Oh, and 2-4-1’s go from 10-11 p.m. Have at it.)

Click HERE for the Facebook event


What's l'etoile looking at on the web this week?

Here at l’etoile, we’re firm believers that one can never have too many accessories. That’s why we were thrilled when we discovered we could indulge our closets while supporting an amazing worldwide cause. Enter: Nomi Network. A non-profit created to thwart women being sold into sexual slavery in countries where sex trafficking is rampant, Nomi Network links the fashion industry to “cause-driven, well-designed” merch employing the women who would be at-risk to such trafficking with sustainable employment, fair wages, medical care and education making fashion-forward products out of recycled materials. Wielding the slogan “buy our bags, not our bodies,” the accessories crafted by Nomi Network workers – totes, purses and accessories –not only are stylish additions to your wardrobe but helping profit a fantastic organization and changing lives.

Click HERE for the website


Stone Arch Festival of the Arts

@ Minneapolis Riverfront District- St. Anthony Main
219 Main St. SE

10 a.m. – 6 p.m. Sat. and Sun. / Free

Minneapolitans may forget to stick a card in the mail for Pops, but we never forget to arrange our third-weekend-of-Junes around the Stone Arch Festival of the Arts. Which, not that you need reminding, is the best time to frolic amongst local artists and crafters, musicians, and food vendors whilst enjoying the gorgeous skyline and riverfront views we never seem to get over. This year’s headline concert, happening at 7 p.m. on Saturday, features Rogue Valley and Farewell Milwaukee. Other Saturday acts include Dragons Power Up!, White Light Riot, and The Goondas, with Phantom Tails, Blue Sky Blackout, and Mayda taking the stage on Sunday. And that’s not to mention the more than 250 artist booths, Minnesota film series, art car display, and Minnesota Made Artisan Market. Swoon!

Click HERE for the Stone Arch site


Arty Garage Sale & Bikini Bike Wash

@ Q.arma Building/Altered Esthetics
1224 Quincy St NE

Noon to 5 p.m. / Free

The clever kitties at Altered Esthetics always come up with the darnedest things. Saturday's outdoor fundraising party for the community-oriented gallery will feature a garage sale, a bikini bike wash, and even some good old fashioned sci-fi film goodness. Pick up some artsy items in the sale, which will be rife with art supplies, frames, art work abandon at the gallery, and everything in between. Be sure to ride your bike so you can get it scrubbed down by the busty babes from Bawdy Blue Burlesque Review while you enjoy a screening of one of the best Sean Connery film of all time: ZARDOZ.

Click HERE for the Altered Esthetics site


Bike City Pre-Launch Party

@ One on One Bike Studio
117 1st Ave N

6 p.m. to 10 p.m.

When do the peeps at MPLS.TV sleep? We're pretty sure they don't. And to prove that point even further, the non-stop team is set to launch yet another facet of their growing empire: Bike City. What's that, you ask? Well, Bike City is a new arm of the MPLS.TV brand that focuses on urban biking and the culture surrounding it. In other words, an obvious fit for our town, considering we hold the title for "Best Bike City" in America. This Saturday, head down to the alley adjacent to One on One Bike studio for a festive two-wheel-inspired blowout with the MPLS.TV brethren and Surly Bikes, featuring giveaways, performances, music, and cyclist-friendly shenanies a-plenty. We can't wait to see what they do with this new project!

Click HERE for more info


The RMS Duchess of York

@ Paper Moose Jumpsuit
945 Broadway Ave. NE

7 p.m. Fri-Sun, and 9 p.m. Fri-Sat. / $10

In World War II, the HMS Duke of York was a King George V-class (read: super awesome) battleship of the Royal Navy. Equally hell-bent on conquering its foes, albeit in a much more arty, metaphoric, and wholly non-violent manner, is the RMS Duchess of York, launching from Paper Moose Jumpsuit & Co this Friday and Saturday. Anchored on the idea that doing whatever “feels right” may not be the best way to amuse ourselves and find happiness, The Duchess aims to restore the rules of joy, lost in a time where the cocktail your friend ordered always tastes better than your own. All aboard!

Click HERE for the Facebook event


You Must Not Name Everything: An Art Party

@ 360 Larpenteur Ave. W.
St. Paul

5 p.m. / Free

Three floors of open galleries bursting with creations from found art and poesy to upcycled lingerie and art journals are yours to explore Saturday at “You Must Not Name Everything: An Art Party.” And they really aren’t kidding – it would take way too long to name everything this event has in store. Highlights include new works by Jack Walsh, known for making humorous, curious pieces from materials found in nature and dumpsters alike; readings from husband and wife poet/book artist team Dale and Laura Pendell and from John Colburn, editor of art magazine Spout and cofounder of the Center for Visionary Poetics; a plethora of crafts from Bird & Flower Studio; music by Dog Town; and, of course, refreshments and door prizes galore.

Click HERE for more info


Giorgio Moroder Monthly

@ Club Jager
923 Washington Ave N

10 p.m. – 2 a.m. / 21+ / free

So, you dig disco? Sassy synth gets your motor started? Well, then you probably owe your dancefloor soul to Giorgio Moroder. Dubbed “the father of disco,” Moroder and his notorious creep stash blessed the world with 4 solid decades of pure dance and electronic pleasure and smothered his juicy producing chops on remixes for Donna Summer, Bowie, Blondie, Cheap Trick, and providing the soundtracks to a few of our favorite 80's flicks – American Gigolo & Midnight Express fans please stand up. We can pretty much guarantee that any and everything you like about dance music – vocoders, drum machine beats, sexy synth build-ups – has its roots in Moroder. Tonight, join DJ Dirty McKenzie and Club Jager for their third Saturday night delight featuring 4 straight hours of Moroder and Moroder-inspired dance jams. As you move your stuff to the tunes, Fritz Lang's classic silent film “Metropolis” will be screening in the background. Yes, the hour has come to go avant-gardely electronic; and Dirty Mackenzie be there, holding your Power Glove suited hand.

Click HERE for the Facebook event

Editor in Chief: Kate Iverson // Contributors: Juleana Enright, Tara Sloane, Natalie Gallagher, Kate Iverson, Robyn Lewis, Jahna Peloquin, Lauren Gantner