- Dub Echoes screens at BloomBars tonight.
Tuesday: Dub Echoes at BloomBars
I still remember when my sophomore-year roommate bought Arkology, dub godfather Lee "Scratch" Perry's boxed set, in 1997. It didn't change my life or anything, but my roommate played its three discs so damn often that, over time, I began to notice subtle variations in the music. It also probably helped that I was smoking copious amounts of pot at the time. Either way, that anthology made me appreciate dub not only for itself, but for its massive influence on hip-hop and especially electronica. It remains an underrated genre, but recent innovations like dubstep have helped broaden its audience. In Dub Echoes, Brazilian filmmaker Bruno Natal documents dub's entire history, interviewing everyone from Perry and Mad Professor to the contemporary acts they've inspired, like Thievery Corporation and Basement Jaxx. You will almost certainly get a contact high while watching this movie.
This is a Warren Miller film, which is all that needs to be said, really. You know exactly what you are, and aren't, getting: dudes flying around the world and skiing gnarly terrain, accompanied by a Vans Warped Tour soundtrack. The only thing out of the ordinary is that skier Jonny Moseley, not Miller, narrates the film.
Friday: When We Leave at E Street Cinema
Film Neu, an annual showcase of new cinema from Germany, Switzerland, and Austria, opens tonight with When We Leave, Germany’s 2011 Oscar nominee for foreign film, about a unhappily married, German-born Turkish woman who flees Istanbul for Berlin with her five-year-old son. Write-director Feo Aladag be attendance, thus the $25 ticket. If you'd rather pay less and just see the film, come for the $10 screening at 10 p.m.
Friday: Yo La Tengo at 9:30 club
Yo La Tengo have been together for a quarter century now, a fact that will make you feel either impossibly old or impossibly young. The beauty of this Hoboken trio, though, is that their music transcends generations. Actually, that's just the beginning of their beauty. The feedback on Painful, the swishing drums on "Autumn Sweater," the quiet atmospherics of And Then Nothing Turned Itself Inside-Out — all beautiful. In fact, Yo La Tengo doesn't know how to do ugly; it's not in the band's musical vocabulary. On occasion they are, at worst, too pensive or deliberately quirky. But in concert? Never.
Friday: Dismemberment Plan at Black Cat
In the City Paper last week, Aaron Leitko wondered whether The Dismemberment Plan was the Internet's first buzz band. He doesn't explicitly answer that question, so allow me: Yes, they were. Pitchfork was the first independent music website with mainstream reach, and Emergency & I was the first obscure album they championed to such a degree. Consider the records it beat out for Best Album of 1999: The Soft Bulletin, 69 Love Songs, I See a Darkness, and Keep It Like a Secret. Is Emergency & I truly greater than those? In hindsight, I don't think so, but it's easy to see why the staff of Pitchfork, which I joined the following year, was so enamored. We were, most of us, in our early '20s, and no other record encapsulated our experience quite like The Dismemberment Plan. Also, have you ever seen the band perform "Ice of Boston" at the Middle East in Cambridge, Mass.? It's utter madness, and I should know: I was one of those people bounding around the stage. Expect a winding back of the clock tonight at the Black Cat, and more civilized shows at the 9:30 club on Saturday and Sunday nights.
Friday and Sunday: The White Meadows at Freer & Sackler Galleries
Last month, Iranian filmmaker Mohammad Rasoulof was sentenced to six years in prison and banned from making films for 20 years for allegedly propagandizing against the government. Translation: He told the truth about the totalitarian regime. So this surrealist film shot along Lake Urmia, with its unusual salt formations and miniature islands, could very well be his last.
The Settlement, joined by two shorts, concludes the "Stories From a Russian Province" series. Sergei Loznitsa's film is described as "visually arresting and enigmatic," and "possibly a parable of post-Soviet life."