Sunday, December 19, 2010

A New Year's Eve Carnival of Awesomeness

I've received a ton of press releases from restaurants about their New Year's Eve menus. I don't know about you, but I have no interest in paying a ridiculous sum of money for a fancy, romantic dinner-for-two on NYE. I'd rather have a cheap, fun evening with some of my favorite people/bands in Boston. So, no food in this post...just music! (I think the phrase "Fork it over, Boston!" can apply to entertainment as well as food. I guess the scope of this blog is slowly expanding to include taking advantage of any awesomeness that Boston offers.)

Do you have plans for New Year's Eve yet? Looking for a night of carnivalesque dancing, music, and other ridiculously awesome gender-bending and mind-bending entertainment? A little bit of boyfriend-promotional spam: Joel's band, the Somerville Symphony Orkestar, is going to be playing as part of Walter Sickert's SteamCRUNK Lounge at Hynes Convention Center for First Night Boston. (Get more info on the Facebook event page.) Other performers include Dezrah the Strange ("an ordinary guy doing extraordinary things"), Madge of Honor ("drag royalty, burlesque creepiness, artsy performance art, wild variety, and ensemble work"), Johnny Blazes ("draws from hir training in theater, dance and opera to create a graceful clowning style that incorporates drag, burlesque and circus arts to create works that defy categorization"), Trabants ("a groovy collective performing the finest in dusty 60's surf music and assorted obscure gems"), Meff 'n JoJo's Tiny Instrument Revue ("retrosexual, Jewy vaudeville, wicked queer, euphemnuendo ukulele, mininstruments 'n mandolin"), and of course Walter Sickert and the Army of Broken Toys ("musically sophisticated Dada-esque circus carnival run amuck"...and Boston Music Awards Live Artist of the Year nominee!). Buy your First Night button here - only $15 if you buy online ($18 at retail locations), and it gets you into a whole day's worth of First Night entertainment spread throughout the city.

Throughout the last year, I've had the pleasure of falling into Walter Sickert and the Army of Broken Toys' trippy rabbit hole on several occasions - Joel's band has played with them before, and my band played with them a couple months ago. Sometimes we even get a little Monday night serenade from them; they actually practice right across the street from Joel's apartment, and on a quiet night we can hear them clearly. This is the type of strangely-clothed self-confidently weird group that you laugh at in high school while secretly fearing/admiring them and kind of wishing you could be friends with them. They are really not to be missed. Take a little trip into Boston's carnival music scene and you'll never look back. Some photos to give you a glimpse of the craziness:

Joel's band is slightly less trippy but a whole lot of fun. On the First Night site, they're described as "a carnivalized punk show that turns its audiences into equal parts mosh-pit and horah", and that's pretty accurate. Have you heard Gogol Bordello? The Somerville Symphony Orkestar fits into a similar genre: punk with Eastern European influences. You'll hear elements of Klezmer and Balkan themes wrapped in an instrumental punk package, and it'll be hard not to dance. A couple photos from past shows:

Dave plays the amazing trump-bone.
I was somehow conned into dancing around in the elephant costume, which has a major lack of breathing holes. What's with the elephant? Well, you'll have to come to the show and see for yourself.
Plus, the SSO will be selling merchandise for the first time ever. This is your chance to get your hands on awesome shirts and shot glasses:

It's an unshowered sort of Sunday, so here's the shirt wrinkled haphazardly on a table rather than on me. They look awesome in real life!

So, what are your NYE plans? (Here's that First Night link again in case you want to buy buttons!)

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