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  • Paul F. Tompkins, Sept. 7, Helium

    He was standing very still, but my hand was shaking. Photo | Patrick Rapa This set is finished, by the way. Maybe it’s the suit (complete with vest!), but Paul F. Tompkins even sounds like a good guy when he’s yelling “fuck” or confessing to prolonged string of video cassette thefts. Of...

    • Dec 13, 2010
  • Patton Oswalt, Werewolves And Lollipops, CD

      22 tracks, (Sub Pop) Wackity Schmackity Doo. Listen to Patton Oswalt’s Werewolves and Lollipops and see if you don’t find yourself uttering those seven nonsense syllables for the next week (or month, or more). It’s Oswalt shorthand for “This is funnnnnnyyyy!” and the punchline of W&L’s best bit, “Wackity Schmackity Doo,”...

    • Dec 13, 2010
  • PA Ballet Company B, Oct. 11, Merriam Theater

    Do the Experiment Lights up, dancers on stage, Pennsylvania Ballet invited its audience back into its world of tour jetes, sassy social dance, and experimental moves out of nowhere. For its Merriam opening, PAB began with George Balanchine’s Concerto Barocco, a deceptively simple intertwining of bodies to Johann Sebastian Bach’s gorgeous Concerto...

    • Dec 13, 2010
  • The Decemberists, July 15, Mann Center

    Photo: Daniel Koh | More Photos You can be snide all you want about rock bands hiring orchestras to back them for certain albums/tours — Tom Scharpling says it stems from a vain desire to prove “songs” are really “compositions” — but The Decemberists sounded comfortable playing with the Mann Festival Orchestra....

    • Dec 13, 2010
  • The 1-Upper: Grow Island

    Shiny, happy, AOL-looking people holding hands Grow Island is the latest in the venerable Grow series of games, which have been around almost as long as free Flash games have, and is arguably its best. The latest installment is more of the same deductive puzzles, though this time around the developer, Eyemaze,...

    • Dec 13, 2010
  • V/A, The Heavy Metal Box Set

    Rhino Beware: Screams that couldn’t come from a human being found within Let’s start with the band names: Angel Witch. Blitzkrieg. Tygers Of Pan Tang. Mercyful Fate. Helloween. Manowar. Now, a couple of song titles: “Attack of the Mad Axeman.” “Witching Hour.” “Black Funeral.” “Hall of the Mountain King.” “Hail and Kill.”...

    • Dec 13, 2010
  • Ted Leo + Pharmacists and Thermals, August 12, McCarren Park Pool, Brooklyn

    James Canty and Ted Leo Photo | Brian Howard “We’re not even getting our own jokes.” So Ted Leo’s onstage banter wasn’t the greatest. And his jokes lacked punchlines. But it was no matter. Performing at the McCarren Park pool in Brooklyn on Sunday with a giant billowing cloud and a bright...

    • Dec 13, 2010
  • MC Black Thought, Oct.7, 5th to 15th Street

    Photo – Clayton Ruley “F**k gettin’ money for real – get freedom” Okay, yeah…he didn’t perform and this wasn’t a Roots concert, but effff that – this deserves some love. Philly MC Black Thought marched from the Constitution Center to City Hall on Sunday as part of the Poor People’s Economic Human...

    • Dec 13, 2010
  • Subversive Seamster, Melissa Rannels

    Village Thrift to Village chic or something In the right hands, Subversive Seamster (The Taunton Press, $14.95) could be a cute weekend project. The crafty how-to book shows thrifty gals how to turn Salvation Army finds into “street couture.” Some pieces (oversized earrings from re-purposed leather jackets, Hawaiian shirt pillow covers) are...

    • Dec 13, 2010
  • Madden 08, PS2

    Madden 08 Won, Too Unvincable Madden 08 (EA Sports, various platforms), the latest installment of the most profitable football video game franchise in the history of the modern gaming era (post-Atari 2600), is a substantial upgrade from its predecessors with the addition of a few nuanced features (Player Weapons, enhanced “Hit Stick”...

    • Dec 13, 2010

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