You always see obscure band stickers plastered in bathroom stalls at the bar, on the fridges, or both; On empty shells of payphones, bus shelters and all kinds of other non-objectionable places, tattoos of the modern urban landscape. Then that one always jumps into your vision, hard to unsee, especially when the colorway gleams hot pink. S-H-I-N-0-B-I in geometric block letters, circles, squares and triangles the dominant motifs… NINJA. You know what genre it doesn’t come from, but from where does it? Blau!
Rounding that corner to full on band maturity, Shinobi Ninja rose out of Brooklyn’s primordial soup in 2008, dropped their debut in 2011 (the title track of it Rock Hood swiftly picked and featured on the video game NBA 2K12) and dabbled in storytelling with their 2014 release Escape from NY.
They’ve found their way back into their true niche of Afropunk with their most recent release Artistic Visions, which to the uninitiated equals rock x rap x fitting genre (y). They leaked an exclusive from Absolutepunk.net titled Bang Bang, a self-aware, clinical and polished cut from an outfit that cared enough to make a extra stop in MKE long enough to inspire a few game revelers to slap a stickers up, the mark of a good memory.
Bang Bang via Shinobi Ninja on YouTube
Damn conventional wisdom, Busdriver still matters if he don’t get heard. It baffles me that a dude can collaborate with one of the illest, illest, rappers of all time Aceyalone as a teen, put out give-or-take 12 albums through out the 2000’s into today, and still be okay paying dues. That’s probably why he’s so raw. Not trying too hard to be cool, and being cool being among the good people.
In 2014, Busdriver let Open Mic Eagle, Nocando, and Milo kill it before he let loose some sheit that had me thinking “this is what Socrates was talking about with The Cave.” Do you know what you’re seeing?
Busdriver at MadPlanet, Dorner vs Tookie Tour, 2014
Busdriver getting it with a pretty lovely local slate putting on, Lorde Fredd33, Zed Kenzo, Milo and admirable Miltown Beatdown competitor hitmayng jockying tonite at Mad Planet.
A muralist and exhibit designer by trade, Atilano admits that painting in this format is a relatively new foray. A metal putty knife scoops and spreads florescent and pastel acyrlic into place. It sticks in angular patches, guided by line. In other works, splashes of contrasting colors highlight and make knowN their abstract intentions.
Munching dramatically, these works keep you looking. Philip Atilano measure his aesthetic with specific gravity.
Setting the mark for improvised jazz in Milwaukee, Unrehearsed MKE paced its two year anniversary with a follow-up show in March. Unrehearsed MKE came equipped its usual stable of thorough bred musicians, fit for carrying music jockeys around the gormandizing track, a mile and a quarter.
Unrehearsed’s departure from the traditional recital performance doesn’t reveal itself until host Barry Clark shares the recipe, its all improvised. The musicians are live tracks that Clark taps, steps back, and listens to the joy that composition gave.
Unrehearsed #26 featured selections of go-to instrumentation of Jay Mollerskov with Nicholas Elert, and Cody Steinmann all on guitar. Jess Lemont (percussion), Michael Lang (percussion), and Nick Weckman (trombone) went in together.
An odd pairing, vibraphone and gongs performed by Timothy Dries and Michael Bettine, ushered a savory flavor profile coating the audience with satiating interplay.
Unrehearsed #26, Jazz Estate
Unrehearsed #26, Jazz Estate part 2
Unrehearsed MKE residency at Jazz Estate will pick up its monthly place sometime in future, as in May 3rd at 7:30p.
Without actually smelling it, the stench of stale beer permeated Eddie’s crap-hole apartment. Petty thieves, smart alec jerks, low-life amateur cons, and shape-shifters, litter the neighborhood that starts when you enter the Alchemist Theatre. It’s dingy. It’s plastered with aerosol tags and shitty band posters, were you just there or are you here? The Bowery was kind of like that. New York 1977 that’s where we are, in the Kitchen.
Aaron Kopec steps off the curb into the gangways of the Rotten Apple to set his latest production Another Tale of Eddie, the first episode in his New York Stories trilogy set for this spring. Like the title says, this tale is about Eddie Valentine (David Sapiro), an oxymoron of a character. He lacks enough scruples to guiltlessly ensnare straggling neophyte posers in petty schemes that separate them from their loose change. At the same time he’s so un-hardcore, he demonstrates repeated he lacks the stomach to really be a heartless bastard that belongs to the night.
Eddie’s running mate Izzy (April Paul) kicks her wits in a nasal Queens-laden inflection, smacking him coldly with sobering sarcasm at every opportunity. She’s not the sharpest razor, only getting the job done as needed. When she teams up with Eddie to fleece fresh faces that show up at a rock shows, she lets you know she’s at least good at one thing.
A Lit Match
Rose (Shannon Nettesheim) enters Eddie’s world, and he quickly finds out she is fresh in more places than just the face. With her, his bladder repeatedly gets called to the carpet. Known to hide behind his tough guy personal, Eddie jellies before our eyes, slowly and sappily, at one point so disgustingly he nearly dry-heaves on himself. He reluctantly bares his soul to Rose, as bared on the pages of his crumpled up notebook, oh god, he’s a writer.
When the Glass Shatters
Enjoyable aspects of Another Tale of Eddie present themselves readily, starting with the scenic design. Small details go duly noted. Manufactured grime coats all of the furnishings, vintage beer cans line the sink and counter tops, a working Zenith tube-t.v. fires up occasionally (the pitch of the transistor jars any pre-milennial memory). In one scene, Eddie opens the cupboards and it’s filled with toasters, a nice reference for recent Alchemist regulars.
Nettensheim maintains an enigmatic disposition throughout her portrayal of Rose, adding much needed dimension to the play’s structure. Eddie stands as a relatively straight-forward character. Sapiro reads this role quite transparently leaving some scenes to approach death on set, although he mostly revives them at the last possible opportunity. In the shoes of Izzy, April Paul provides valuable pace and character consistency of a lower-Eastside punk, from Brooklyn. Jacob Woelfel (Hilly Crystal), Annie Lipski (Sindy), Nathan Sawtelle (Bruce) and Liz Witford make cameos, and most likely will appear in upcoming New York Stories episodes.
Another Tale of Eddie basically acts like that person that does annoying things to the point that you are almost irked, then somehow salvages your outlook with a catchy idea, or lets say a story. This time the Alchemist delivers a mental nipple twister, which in some strange way was kind of gratifying.
Another Tale of Eddie runs tomorrow night March 21, and next weekend on the March 26, 27 and closing Saturday March 28. All shows start promptly at 7:30p.