Pressing the Flesh Rumors of the Fleshtones' demise have been greatly exaggerated, although widely perpetuated. It's not that the band stopped recording after the IRS glory days that produced Hexbreaker! and Roman Gods. But a few unexpected twists in the group's career -- personnel changes, albums released late or never distributed -- led many longtime fans to wonder if "super rock" was gone forever. "Super rock," of course, was the term that stuck to the high-octane garage rock the Fleshtones had been perfecting since Queens teen-agers Keith Streng and Peter Zaremba formed the band in a basement in 1976, inspired by local boys the Ramones. (MTV viewers may also remember Zaremba as the host of alternative music show The Cutting Edge.) With the addition of horns, harmonica, and James Brown's flair for showmanship, the Fleshtones' shows turned into roving twist parties: In Paris, their shouts of "Are you ready for super rock?" were greeted with cheers from wildly enthusiastic (and possibly confused) French youth, as recorded on Speed Connection (Live in Paris) Pt. 1 & 2. Noise guru Steve Albini and R.E.M.'s Peter Buck each produced a Fleshtones album, but with this year's More Than Skin Deep and its go-go backbeat, the band has returned to its super rock roots. They'll play an extended set at 9 p.m. at the Make-Out Room, 3225 22nd St. (at Mission), S.F. Admission is $6; call 647-2888.
Let Them Snort Coke! The excesses of Louis XIV's court in Moliere's time (elaborate costuming and mannered nastiness, a surplus of wealth and ego) evoke a certain other debauched empire: Hollywood. Neil Bartlett, artistic director of London's Lyric Theater Hammersmith, milks the parallels in his adaptation of The Misanthrope, the French playwright's satire of social hypocrisy, which the comic theater ensemble Rough and Tumble stages locally. In Bartlett's adaptation, which takes place at a movie-industry insiders' party rather than in royal society, screenwriter Alceste must compete with two other players for the affections of Hollywood "it" girl Celimene. Business deals are brokered and relationships broken in a flurry of witticisms as the love lives of the party's other guests become ensnarled in the courtship battle. Rock trio 6 Eye Columbia will record original music for the show, which previews at 8 p.m. (and runs through Aug. 30) at New Langton Arts, 1246 Folsom (at Ninth Street), S.F. Admission is $12-15; call 789-8532.
Girls on Film Blaxploitation film queen Pam Grier gets her due in Badass Supermama, and a housewife has a Pee-wee Herman-like adventure involving an all-girl bar and a handsome lady golfer in Good Citizen Betty Baker, two of the films playing this month at "La Lesbian A Lesbian Performance Series." Those films screen the latter half of a daylong movie marathon that begins at noon Aug. 16 and features shorts, documentaries, erotica, and discussions with local filmmakers. Juggler Sara Felder's winning comic solo show June Bride, about a traditional Jewish lesbian wedding, runs at 8 p.m. Aug. 22 and 23. The performance series begins at 8 p.m. tonight with stand-up comedians Elvira Kurt and Charlene Tapia at La Pena Cultural Center, 3105 Shattuck (at Prince), Berkeley. Admission is $11-13; call (510) 654-6346 for ticket and schedule information.
Puppy Uppers Clomp! "Ooooh." Clomp! "Aaaah." Clomp! That's the sound (or a close approximation) of the Friskies Alpo Canine Frisbee Disc Regional Championships, the origins of which date back to 1975, a year after Ohio college student Alex Stein snuck his dog Ashley Whippet into Dodger Stadium, where he showed off Ashley's Frisbee disc-catching prowess between innings as a publicity stunt designed to win Ashley a screen test (it did). Frisbee disc-catching dogs competing in today's event will be rated on their flying leaps, midair catches, flips, spins, and speed; winners will be eligible for national competition and, ultimately, a lot of free dog food. During intermission, three-time world champion Sushi (led by owner Gary Suzuki) will demonstrate his winning form. A raffle and Frisbee disc tossing game for kids are also planned for the event, which begins at 9:30 a.m. in Sharon Meadows, Golden Gate Park, S.F. Admission is free; call (888) 444-ALPO.
Duff Stuff Former Guns N' Roses bassist Duff McKagan was a struggling Seattle musician before Seattle even had a reputation as the struggling musician's capital. In 1982, McKagan formed 10 Minute Warning with drummer Greg Gilmore, who went on to play with Mother Love Bone. They never recorded an album and McKagan eventually left Seattle for L.A. After GN'R and Mother Love Bone imploded, McKagan and Gilmore re-formed 10 Minute Warning and released a self-titled debut album of old and new material mixed by Jack Endino and released this spring by Sub Pop. That McKagan's name and reportedly heavy power rock have been aligned with Seattle proto-grunge bands like Green River is a revelation; better still is that in 1981, 15-year-old McKagan drummed for most excellent punk-pop band the Fastbacks (they of the exploding drummer problem), with whom 10 Minute Warning plays at an Incredibly Strange Wrestling show. The Dragons also perform. It all starts at 9 p.m. at the Transmission Theater, 11th Street & Folsom, S.F. Admission is $12; call 861-6906.