Weekly Volcano Blogs: Walkie Talkie Blog

Posts made in: September, 2013 (79) Currently Viewing: 41 - 50 of 79

September 17, 2013 at 2:18pm

Meet the man who might steampunk Tacoma's gateway intersection

"Raygun Gothic Rocketship," temporary installation at San Francisco waterfront, by Sean Orlando

Tacomans, get down to 26th Street and Pacific Avenue on Wednesday, Sept. 25 to meet artist Sean Orlando, the artist commissioned through a national call-to-artists to create artwork for this gateway intersection. An Artist Fellow at the de Young Museum and a celebrated East Bay (San Francisco) surrealistic, steampunk, high-tech, kenetic sculptor, Orlando has created some amazing public and private art, which can be viewed at http://www.engineeredartworks.com/.

Orlando's work involves uniting communities of artists, engineers, designers and fabricators to accomplish large-scale feats of sculpture. "I've served as lead artist for several massive and interactive public works informed by my interests in science and industry. These sculptures have been exhibited at San Francisco's Embarcadero waterfront, NASA's Moffet Field, Makers Faire, and various arts and science related venues," he said.


September 18, 2013 at 7:43am

5 Things To Do Today: Babysitter, Carnival of Madness, astrology readings, JoDee Purkeypile and more ...


WEDNESDAY, SEPT. 18 2013 >>>

1. The attack that hit us when we pressed play on the first song on Babysitter's EYE LP was so immediately guttural we imagined the sonic damage it would do to your internal organs if you exposed them to the ridiculous vibrations emanating from the amplifiers. The rest of the songs flirt with early '90s indie and grunge, while never giving up the caustic edge that first alerted us to Babysitter. Catch the punk band with Happy Noose, Species and Handwritings at 9 p.m. in Le Voyeur.

2. Why climb one Mountain when you can climb two? Double Mountain Brewery out of Hood River will visit Pint Defiance from 5-7 p.m., pouring hoppy brews, including a rare appearance of its Lulu Saison.

3. Riding the wave of post-grunge-early-2000s-Nickelback-vocals, Shinedown launched onto the scene with "Burning Bright" and later with the hit single "Second Chance." This popular Southeast alt-rock band headlines the 2013 version of the Carnival of Madness tour, which creeps into the Washington State Fair for a 5 p.m. show. The band will be joined by Memphis rockers Skillet, L.A. heavy metal band In This Moment and Nashville Christian rock band We As Human.

4. Carol Barbeau - astrologer, teacher, author, and radio and television personality - will discuss karma, destiny and connections at 6:30 p.m. in Crystal Voyage. Right when it all seems dark and bitter and offensive and acrimonious and conflicted and bilious ... here's your opening. 

5. Best known as vocalist/guitarist for pop-psych quartet the Alice Rose, JoDee Purkeypile will perform his porridge of power pop, rock riffage and Beatles-meet-Kinks at 8:30 p.m. at Jazzbones. Setting the mood will be Misterblackwatch and the Silver Ships.

LINK: Wednesday, Sept. 18 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

September 18, 2013 at 9:25am

Modern Kin's "Abandon" track drops today

Modern Kin is working with a darker, more ragged sound than the Pastors' Wives. Photo Courtesy of Facebook

Drew Grow and the Pastors' Wives are no strangers to Tacoma. They have played shows put on by The Warehouse, Notes From Home, Broadway Center's Fall Free for All and First Night. What many may not know is they have reconfigured their band, stripping down to their three core members - frontman Drew Grow, bassist Kris Doty, and drummer Jeremiah Hayden. Along with the streamlined lineup they changed their name to reflect the new direction.

Modern Kin evokes a more grown up familiarity than their previous name. Without shedding all of their former soulfulness, they've emerged more raw and gritty yet still cling to the close-knit feel fans love. Put it this way: If the Pastors' Wives were the swooning buzz after a late night cocktail, Modern Kin is the anticipatory glimpse of hope after an early morning cup of strong coffee.

Even with the new name and new sound, fans of the Pastors' Wives will find similarities that drew them to the original band. They are still a predominately live band that'll knock your socks off with Grow's captivating and mesmerizing vocals, Doty and Hayden's expansive harmonies and the collective driving rhythms. 

Modern Kin will release their self-titled debut album Tuesday, Oct. 22. Janet Weiss (Sleater-Kinney, Quasi, Wild Flag) produced the album with basic tracks recorded in eight days at the now-defunct Hangar Studios in Sacramento, Calif., with engineer Bryce Gonzales (Here We Go Magic, The Breeders, Devandra Banhart). Two of the tracks - "Abandon" and "Big Enough to Cook" - were mixed by Dave Fridmann (The Flaming Lips, MGMT, Tame Impala), while the remainder were mixed by K. Evan Hodge III and Drew Grow.

In anticipation of the album release, Modern Kin is releasing their new track "Abandon" in an "inclusive track premiere" in a coordinated effort on blogs and media at 10 a.m. Wednesday, Sept. 18. You can pre-order the new album from their bandcamp

Filed under: Music,

September 18, 2013 at 9:46am

Nerd Alert: Whedonverse unleashes "Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D."


When talking about comic books and nerd stuff, in general, one of the first things that comes up has to be Superman. Then, you'd probably talk about Batman, Spider-Man, the X-Men, Iron Man, Aquaman, Wonder Woman, the Wonder Twins, Ant Man, the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Fritz the Cat, Mr. Natural, Howard the Duck and a couple hours later, you'd probably mention that shadowy organization known as S.H.I.E.L.D.

And, of course, your favorite iteration of S.H.I.E.L.D. would universally be agreed upon to be the 1998 classic TV movie, Nick Fury: Agent of Shield, starring David Hasselhoff and written, oddly enough, by David S. Goyer, of Dark City, Blade and Batman Begins. There's just no arguing with that kind of quality.

Mistaking the nation's sighs of resignation at Nick Fury and company's token cameos in the last several Marvel comic films and their involvement in the superhero jumble of The Avengers as enthusiastic seals of approval, Hollywood has taken the initiative to run this franchise even further into the ground by giving the agency of S.H.I.E.L.D. its own television show.

"Yes," a chorus of nerds will scream in unison, "but Joss Whedon is the creative force behind ABC's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.! How can it be so bad?"


Filed under: Nerd Alert!, Screens, Pop Culture,

September 18, 2013 at 1:37pm

Judging by the Trailer: "Battle of the Year"

Hang on a minute. What's going on here? Why is everyone wearing a matching tracksuit?

In writing about Battle of the Year, I find I have a battle of my own to fight: is it possible for me to review this trailer without simply spending 300 words talking about the most reprehensible man in existence - and star of this movie - Chris Brown?

This is a man whose entire nature has steadily morphed into utter repugnance and mystifying lack of self-awareness - oh he of Rihanna-beating fame and nonstop verbal diarrhea and neck tattoos. That his popularity remains unfazed by years of some of the most jaw-droppingly awful acts anyone can commit in public is a testament to how little of a shit the American public has decided to give when it comes to the morality of people who dance real good.

But back to Battle of the Year. In a terribly misguided (and woefully on-the-nose) attempt to combine the breakdance pyrotechnics of goofy fare like Step Up with the feel-good inspiration of sports movies like Remember the Titans and Hoosiers, Battle of the Year posits a world where a disgraced former basketball coach is brought in to reinvigorate the American team in what appears to be an international breakdancing competition after a 15 year losing streak.

To whip them into shape, Coach brings them to a prison (where Chris Brown should be, anyway) and shows them the value of hard work and stick-to-itiveness. Brown opines, "Dancing, for me, is like breathing," and breathing, for him, is like viciously beating women and homosexuals.

What follows is a flurry of team-building exercises and uncomfortable, rah-rah patriotism with Koreans as our sworn enemies.

In my time reviewing movies for the Volcano, my best experience at a screening was seeing Step Up 3D - an utterly goofy and enjoyable experience, bolstered by a completely frivolous plot and legitimately awe-inspiring dance sequences.

But, I mean, who wouldn't give all that up for a jingoistic Chris Brown vehicle?

QUESTION: Did you see Insidious: Chapter 2?

September 19, 2013 at 7:40am

5 Things To Do Today: Art+Science, State Supreme Court, Ancient Victorys, Final Word and more ...

Regular Gillian and host Rev. Adam McKinney often sing duets Thursday nights at Puget Sound Pizza. Photo credit: Pappi Swarner

THURSDAY, SEPT. 19 2013 >>>

1. Every Thursday night at Puget Sound Pizza, the Volcano's music critic Rev. Adam McKinney hosts a karaoke session showcasing a Tarantino-like mix of downtown denizens seriously singing Bill Withers and glasses-wearing gals squawking out punk rawk, plus appearances by local rock stars. McKinney, always looking dapper in his sportcoat, has a mellifluous singing voice, perfect for "Disco 2000" by Pulp, "Poisoning Pigeons in the Park" by Tom Lehrer, "Little Green Bag" by the George Baker Selection, "Pulling Mussels (From the Shell)" by Squeeze and his standard closing song, "Bottle of Wine" by the Fireballs. 

2. State Supreme Court will conduct a rare local public hearing of three court cases on the campus of University of Puget Sound. The cases are being heard in Tacoma in order for the public to have the opportunity observe the justice system in action and to pose questions to the nine judges, led by Chief Justice Barbara Madsen. Three appeals to criminal convictions will be heard in two sessions in Schneebeck Concert Hall from 9-11:45 a.m. The Court will hear oral arguments in two cases: one involving privacy rights and the other dealing with mental competency. From 1:30-2:30 p.m., the third case, on a privacy issue, will be argued in a case involving armed robbery. This "traveling court" is part of the Supreme Court's policy of providing open access to local communities.

3. The Art+Science Salon will showcase two pioneering musical groups who use science and technology to create or inspire their music. Will it be proven science and music can be integrated in a manner that can get right-brained individuals excited about science and shake scientific types out of their left brain and onto the dance floor? That's possibly what the scientists, artists, musicians, and the public, will discover as they mess with analog and digital devices from 6-8:30 p.m. in the Kittredge Art Gallery on the campus of the University of Puget Sound. Cellist David Balatero, composer and musician Marcin Paczkowski and saxophonist Ivan Arteaga will perform.

4. The quarterly Ancient Victorys Open Mike brings back some of the 3,000 acoustic music performers from open mikes run by Chris Lunn in this state and California from the 1965 through 1990 to the Antique Sandwich Co. at 7 p.m. Tonight is dedicated to Suzie Grey who passed in August at the age of 97. She sang and played piano until her mid-90s. Expect 25 acts including Steve Beck, Will and Jane Peoples, Mike Nelson, Gary Kanter, Mike Stenberg, Dan Roberts, Gary Graves and others.

5. People, tonight's Word 3rd Thursday is will be the final Word. And producer Josh Rizeberg is going out with a bang, hosting a giant party at 9 p.m. at The New Frontier Lounge. DJs Seabefore, Iceman, U Jammin and Selector Eeetree will spin, with an open mic for emcees, singers and poets.

LINK: Thursday, Sept. 19 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

September 19, 2013 at 10:38am

Mister Blackwatch captured on video

Mister Blackwatch rocked Jazzbones Wednesday, Sept. 18. Photo credit: Pappi Swarner

Tacoma musician, producer and actor Doug Mackey got the band back together - the band being Mister Blackwatch, which was born, lo, many years ago when Mackey, Nick Huff and Joe Wood had issues with cows, kites, a monster, a snake, a robot, bongos and "Orange," and the only cure was to work through the issues musically. Last night, Mister Blackwatch, with singer/songwriter Evan Purcell playing lead guitar, rocked Jazzbones before Silver Ships and JoDee Purkeypile took the stage. Watch the Mister Blackwatch we watched below. ...

Filed under: Music, Tacoma,

September 19, 2013 at 11:59am

Halloween costume ideas - no, really

Dress up as your favorite drug dealer.

Halloween is admittedly my favorite holiday. The crisp cool nights, the spider webs collecting dew, the excitement in the air as the imagination reaches to the otherworld, conjuring ideas of unsettled spirits and life beyond flesh...

That, and it's fun to play dress up.

And even though it's September, it's never too early to start considering your costume. Here, I've compiled a list of awesome costume ideas and places in the South Sound to find them.

Let's start with pop culture:

It would be a shame not to predict a Miley Cyrus or two in the crowd this Halloween. It's super easy to re-create her hairstyle, costume and poses in the viral (and vile) video of her performance at the MTV Video Music Awards. Just put tiny buns on the top of your head like bug antennae, find nude bra and panties, and attempt to twerk. This costume would work for couples as well - just find a Beetlejuice costume and microphone and play up Robin Thicke. Check Goodwill or Value Village for this one.


Filed under: Holidays, Olympia, Lacey, Tacoma,

September 20, 2013 at 7:24am

5 Things To Do Today: Altercation Punk Comedy, PARK(ing) Day, studio tour, Lord Franzannian and more ...

JT Habersaat and his Altercation Punk Comedy Tour have been getting in the van and zig-zagging across the nation since 2008. Courtesy photo

FRIDAY, SEPT. 20 2013 >>>

1. JT Habersaat is punk rock. And he's funny as hell. No stranger to Comedy Central, Brian Posehn and Black Flag's Henry Rollins, Habersaat is deep in the comedy scene. Currently on tour, Habersaat and his motley crew of comedians are bringing their comedy to Le Voyeur in Olympia at 10 p.m. Appearing with Habersaat is Kristine Levine from Portlandia as well as Andy Andrist and Eric Hurst."I would say we all approach comedy with a certain dark sense of humor and a ‘no holds barred' attitude that lends itself perfectly to a ‘punk' comedy tour," Habersaat said. Read Nikki McCoy's full feature on the Altercation Punk Comedy Tour in the Music and Culture section.

2. Holy Leslie Knope! Can you imagine Tacoma without Optimist Park? Without Ursich Park? Without anywhere to take your dog off the leash and let her run? Even in dense, urban areas, open space is a calming force, giving us a place to sit, lie, tag zombies or walk amidst the birds and the trees. National PARK(ing) Day - the annual global event where citizens, artists and activists collaborate to temporarily transform metered parking spaces into "PARK(ing)" spaces: temporary public places - invades Tacoma from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. As part of the title's double meaning, the parks will temporarily be set up on metered parking spots in downtown Tacoma, challenging local businesses to be creative within a limited space - to revisit how public space can be utilized beyond its conventional uses. 

3. The Greater Gig Harbor Open Studio Tour, now in its 21st season, becomes a three-day event this year, with studios open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Friday through Sunday. Artists on this tour are selected by a jury to ensure that they each have a high level of quality, design, and uniqueness in their works, as well as a studio set up that is worthy of being open to the public. There will be 21 studios on the tour, featuring 24 artists. Artwork media include oil, watercolor, and pastel paint, sculpture, wood, mixed media, and more. The tour includes artists in the Gig Harbor, South Kitsap, Fox Island and Key Peninsula areas.

4. The Lord Franzannian Royal Olympian Spectacular Vaudeville Show promises a "fast paced variety show" with "a little something for everyone." Will this mean jugglers? Probably. Contortionists? Perhaps. Rampant fun? Almost certainly. Proceeds benefit BigShowCity, a non-profit Performing Arts Organization that supports and helps finance burgeoning artists. They say laughter is good medicine. Here's a heaping spoonful of proof at 8 p.m. in The Midnight Sun Performance Space.

5.New Queens On the Block celebrates their first anniversary with a huge drag variety show at 9 p.m. in The Urban Onion. Hosted by Selena Veyron and Veronica Audrey Du'Pompadour, expect to see drag from queens and kings, skits, and live acts.

LINK: Friday, Sept. 20 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

September 20, 2013 at 10:26am

Night Moves: Randy Oxford Band, Azar Swan, Ronstadt Generations, MC battle, Carly Rae Jepsen and others ...

Jesus On The Moon


Capitol Theater Olympia - Downtown. For MCs By MCs Presents: 360 VS 206 Freestyle Rap Battle Preliminary. All Ages. 7 pm. $5.

  • Once again, Heretic The Heathen's For MCs By MCs Battle League sets the tone for premier hip-hop battles and events, this time by inviting some standout writers and MCs from Seattle to battle the best of The 360. Fortunately, there is not any true "bad blood" between the areas, but a slight rivalry is alive and healthy. The all-ages battle is a preliminary invitational to see who will make the eight-person teams that will officially represent The 206 and 360 in an official area code battle to be announced later this fall. If you are interested in the next level of rhyme battling and repping your town/city/area code is essential - this is the place to be. - Jose Gutierrez Jr.

Harmon Tap Room Tacoma - Stadium District. Battersea, Jesus On The Moon, Rowhouse. 9 pm.

Jazzbones Tacoma - Sixth Avenue. The Randy Oxford Band. 8 pm. $9.99.

Kilworth Memorial Chapel/University of Puget Sound Tacoma - Northend. Ronstadt Generations Trio. 8 pm. $4-$12.

  • The Tucson-based band - Linda Ronstadt's younger brother, Michael, and his two sons, Michael G. and Petie - three voices and all multi-instrumentalists and solo artists in their own right - bring to life a repertoire that reaches back to the end of the 19th century while continually looking ahead into the 21st, with a rich innovation of original material alongside traditional Southwestern and Mexican songs. - Weekly Volcano

Northern Olympia - Downtown. Azar Swan, Delphic Oracle. All ages. 9 pm. $5.

  • Zohra Atash and Joshua Strawn make up the dark post-punk duo, Azar Swan. As residents of the NYC-based goth label, PENDV SOUND, it would be easy to guess what Azar Swan are all about even before you saw a picture of the pair looking moody, black and intimidatingly stylish. That's actually a quite apt way to describe their music. All violent synths and surging bass and thudding drum machine, swirled together in a tangled web of angsty electronics. Azar Swan are all about creating this threatening musical façade - an assault of sexy darkness that recalls groups like The Knife and other practitioners are electronically enhanced gloom. No wonder, then, that they recently opened Martin Rev, of Suicide, the band that took doom and fear and dressed it up in just enough catchiness to let you sleep with the lights off. Well, "Frankie Teardrop" excluded. - Rev. Adam McKinney

Traditions Cafe and World Folk Art Olympia - Downtown. Erika Luckett, Lisa Ferraro. All Ages. 8 pm. $10-$15.

Uncle Sam's American Bar & Grill Spanaway. Race To Extinction, Tatarus. 9 pm.

Washington State Fair Puyallup. Carly Rae Jepsen, Hot Chelle Rae. 7:30 pm. $20-$50.

LINK: More live music Friday, Sept. 20 in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

Filed under: Night Moves, Olympia, Tacoma, Puyallup,

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