Being a cheapskate is easy in this city -- there's plenty of culture to be had for less than the price of a fancy farmer's market cocktail. Below, our picks for a low-budget weekend.
an underrated act with a Halloween-themed wit and the rapid pacing of a
slasher flick. The band sprints through haunted topics with a
sociopath's smile, its songs splattered with references to brains in
jars, funerals, and phantom limbs. As the title of the group's latest
record, Winchester Mystery House, also reveals, these guys and
gal are obsessed with situations that aren't quite as they appear.
Hence the Hex Dispensers use monsters as metaphors for rotting
romantics, while one of their debut album highlights touted a
lover-as-assassin. Musically, the vocals are dead-on Ramones with
female harmonies, while the guitar riffs veer expertly into Wipers
Tonight they play the Red Devil Records Anniversary Party with Young
Offenders, Outdoorsmen, and Complaints.(9 p.m., Annie's, $8)
Big Trouble in Little China Live Electronic Party @ Li Po (Friday)
We're big fans of the Li Po dance party, and tonight a handful of skilled electronic artists will turn the bowels of the Chinatown bar into an audio oasis. P Fang's music is the stuff that soundstracks stylish sci-fi films, while Ghosts on Tape drapes your ears in a tangled jungle of techno beats and outlandish chants (check out his remix of Rainbow Arabia). Beartrap Mind and Ben Thompson free your mind into ambient pastures, rounding out this mini showcase of local beatmasters. (9 p.m., $3)
Prince vs. Michael @ Madrone (Saturday)
As Eric Arnold reported yesterday, this weekend marks the first Prince vs. Michael Jackson party since the passing of the King of Pop. We expect Madrone to be slammed in this six-hour marathon of classics by both icons. The tribute starts at 8 p.m. with a $5 cover (although you can enter to win free admission here).
for two days this weekend. Organizers say to expect everything from
rock posters to clothing and books to be on display. (11 a.m.-7 p.m.)
Outdoor Mission Creek Concert @ McLaren Park (Saturday)
San Francisco's indie-clectic music festival, Mission Creek, is hosting a big ol' rock show in McLaren Park -- for free! Most of the lineup is local, and we're particularly excited about Rubies, Leopold & His Fiction, and Kelley Stoltz. But if you're craving something a little heavier, Dead Meadow's
psych rock should vibrate the ants like there's an earthquake goin' on.
(4 p.m., free) (Later on Saturday, you can hit Mission Creek's free
Wallworks @ Yerba Buena (Saturday)
"Art on a massive scale is what YBCA architect Fumihiko Maki had in mind for the rooms in which 'Wallworks'
appears -- the place was built specifically to encourage temporary
murals, and that's exactly what new curator Betti-Sue Hertz has put
together. Our current favorite among the eight artists is Leslie Shows,
whose work uses cliff faces, quarry excavations, and the fantastical
interpretation of energy fields to create grandiose paintings of
ruinous grandeur. A series of artist talks called Artist InSight
precedes the official opening of the exhibit; Shows' is today, but
don't miss Odili Donald Odita's opinions on his freaky, high-energy
pastel-bright abstracts, or Edgar Arcenaux holding forth on his doomed,
grainy work vehicles." -- Hiya Swanhuyser (2 p.m.-3 p.m., $5-$7)
Play All @ Cellspace (Saturday)
Artist Sherry Wong mixes mediums (DJs and visual art and performance artists all have a part) in her new show, "Play All," at CELLspace.
Tonight's opening party includes Brass Tacks DJs, SFC Double Dutch, the
Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, and other members of San Francisco's
creative community. The party will be "presented in the tradition of
the 1960s avant-garde Happenings." (Free reception from 7 until 9 p.m.; music and performances from 9 p.m. on, $7)
Free Ben & Jerry's Flipped Out! (Saturday and Sunday)
bad news: You can't just walk into a Ben & Jerry's store and ask to
try the new Flipped Out! flavor. The good news: If you show up (early) at their
appointed spots, company reps will supposedly have a supply of
this new frozen treat on hand. Saturday they're gonna be at Union
Square, and on Sunday at Golden Gate Park. Get more info on the exact
wheres and whens here.
San Francisco Symphony @ Dolores Park (Sunday)
"San Francisco Symphony Concert descends upon the park, hoping les flâneurs du dimanche and their brindled French bulldogs will stop their flânerie
long enough to watch the piccolos wax poetic. The first ditty on the
docket is John Philip Sousa's 'Stars and Stripes Forever,' the stately
National March of the United States of America. Two bits from
suppressed Russian homosexual and holiday favorite Tchaikovsky follow:
excerpts from ballet mainstay Swan Lake, and the "Fantasy-Overture" from Romeo and Juliet. Finally, the finale
comes from that lovable, half-deaf German hair model Beethoven: Symphony No. 5. This
composition remains the number one drama queen of all European
classical music, and its legendary four-note opening motif has been
subjected to endless pop-cultural permutations over the past two
hundred years." -- Evan James (free, 2 p.m.)
Mission Creek Acoustic Pool Party @ Bambuddha Lounge
Spend your Sunday getting serenaded by a Spanish troubadour when Xoel Lopez brings acoustic balladry to Bambuddha Lounge. He plays along with local guitarist Craig Ventresco for another free Mission Creek gig, this one starting at 4 p.m.