Combine French chanson, German electronica, Swedish pop, and a well-developed Peter Pan complex; add a sleazy organ-fueled garage-boogie freakout from New Orleans to homemade drum machines and a criminally infectious puppet musical; and what do you get? The best show in town, hands down. Stereo Total, Quintron, and Miss Pussycat perform on Saturday, Nov. 16, at Slim's at 9 p.m. Tickets are $12-14; call 522-0333 or visit www.slims-sf.com.
By 1977 she had been memorialized by Kiss, but Cynthia Plaster Caster didn't need the hype (after all, she already held Jimi Hendrix in the palm of her hand). While she believed the Kiss song was actually an invitation to immortalize the "member" that had purportedly conquered a legion, she declined, choosing instead to cast the willing cocks of the MC5, Television, Dead Kennedys, and, um, Lovin' Spoonful. Perhaps now, in her more benevolent frame of mind, Cynthia Plaster Caster would change her tune, for the kids. Through the Cynthia Plaster Caster Foundation, a portion of proceeds from the sale of any cast replica goes toward helping the music career of some hopeful young artist, as well as providing hotel rooms for underprivileged groupies. Buyers uninterested in antiquated "pieces" might be happy to know that artists like Momus, Martin Atkins, and Chris Connelly have decided to make their privates public for charity's sake, and some compassionate ladies have similarly donated their tits (Stereolab's Laetitia Sadier, Mekons' Sally Timms, and Demolition Doll Rods' Margaret Doll Rod among them). Just remember, while some gifts keep on giving, others are best left to the imagination. Cynthia Plaster Caster will be in San Francisco to cast Ebbott, lead singer of the Swedish group Soundtrack of Our Lives, and to appear at the opening of her exhibit on Saturday, Nov. 16, at ArtRock Gallery (893 Folsom at Fifth Street) at 7:30 p.m. Admission is free; call 777-5736 or visit www.artrock.com.
Of all the Flash 'toons in all of cyberspace, only Happy Tree Friends gives rise to the pure, uncorrupted childhood glee I first felt upon seeing Marv Newland's Bambi Meets Godzilla. Like Newland, Flash animators Kenn Navarro and Rhode Montijo conjure moments of chaste, candy-coated cuteness that inevitably end in carnage (e.g., a sweet, pastel-hued baby skunk named Petunia plays with a pinwheel, cooing and giggling in self-satisfied delight, until a sudden windstorm turns the pinwheel into a high-powered rotor that eats her face). It's funny every time.
This year, San Francisco's Mondo Media, the same Net-work that gave us Thugs on Film and The God and Devil Show, released Happy Tree Friends: Volume 1 on DVD. The crisp and queasy collection includes 14 episodes, a cast-of-characters slide show, running commentary, early sketches, early pilots, three interactive "Smoochies" -- little games in which you may direct the characters' demise -- and an artists' buzz session. Worth its weight in marshmallow and sinew. Navarro and Montijo will appear in flesh-and-blood real time to indulge all your most perverted furry queries at the screening of Happy Tree Friends: Volume 1 on Saturday, Nov. 16, at Borderlands Books (866 Valencia between 19th and 20th streets) at 7:30 p.m. Admission is free; call 824-8203.