A Menagerie of Outspoken Opinions on Science, World Politics, and Geek Culture

Monday, September 26, 2005

Now That's Entertainment!

So it ended up being a great weekend for entertainment here in Tampa; I didn't so much as turn on my computer until Sunday evening. That's kind of a big deal when you game, blog, post to several different forums, and get most of your news online. I usually spend half my weekend within five feet of my PC, but this time I totally forgot it existed. Which is a good thing.

Friday night I spent at my favorite Tampa dive bar, The Brass Mug. It's out near the university - the place has been a fixture there since at least the late 80s - and usually plays host to local punk, metal, and alternative bands. On Friday I went there with good friends Cartagia, Faust, and Jen, and we were lucky enough to catch a performance by Berwick.

Berwick rocks. Their sound is far more original that what I've come to expect from Tampa's music scene. If forced to draw a comparison I'd say that there might be some Sleater-Kinney influence there; frontwoman-songwriter Jaqui Midnight and bassist Dayna Titus have a strong, clean post-punk sound that made me think of The Hot Rock at least a couple times. Ben "The Chef" Danielle is an obviously skilled drummer and quite the stage personality ... he had everyone's hands in the air for a quick rendition of Eminem's Lose Yourself, which actually sounded pretty good played live on guitar and drums. Highlight of the evening (at least for this 80s kid): Their cover of The Outfield's Your Love. The oldest of the trio might have been about seven when that song was popular, so they've either researched their 80s music or they're fans of The Butchies. Cool either way.

Ben, Jaqui, Sandor, Jen, and Dayna at The Brass Mug Posted by Picasa

Later this week I’ll see if Jaqui can send me a schedule of their next few gigs, so you Tampa readers who like good rock & roll can come out and give them a listen. I’ll probably show up myself a couple times. Oh, and I’m sorry for the crappiness of this photo; Faust’s cell takes pictures about as well as my 35mm camera makes phone calls. But better than nuthin, as they say.

Moving right along, on Saturday my roommate and I watched some movies. I don’t expect much out of Hollywood these days, mostly because what they seem interested in giving us is a mildly toxic mixture of remakes, liberal propaganda, and style-over-substance effects films. So imagine my surprise when I got to see Paul Haggis’ Crash; 20 minutes into it I thought “This might well be the best movie I’ve seen since The Return of the King”. It was. I recommend films warily … I’ve given an unqualified “Go see it” to only three in the past decade or so (The Boondock Saints, The Sixth Sense, and the Lord of the Rings trilogy). Well, Crash makes four. Go rent it ASAP, and be prepared for some very uncomfortable moments that are worth every cringing second.

Finally, Sunday was football and my Bucs won. It looks like my fantasy football team did good too; unless Faust’s kicker plays an exceedingly stellar game tonight – like stellar to the point of singlehandedly racking up a 15-0 win – my Paris Capitulators should beat his Tallahassee Reavers. Here’s to having Tom Brady, Terrell Owens, Carnell Williams, and the entire Buccaneer Defense on the same team!

Happy Monday all. More Serenity stuff this week, you can bet on it.