The Weekend Shortlist December 4 to 6
Friday December 4
Sadly, Mike Yaniro, bassist of the band Twin Stumps on Dais Records was recently a victim of a violent crime, badly beaten while robbed in Ridgewood, Queens. With no medical insurance he needs several surgeries to repair him and has mounting bills. So members of the music community rallied together to play the Mike Yaniro Benefit including Sightings, York Factory Complaint (with special guest Genesis Breyer P-Orridge), Pink Reason, White Suns, and a DJ set by Sean Ragon (Cult of Youth), with all proceeds going towards helping pay his medical bills. With one of the best burgers in Williamsburg, Dumont Burger offers theirs with gourmet toppings, sandwiches, salads, and their amazing mac & cheese. So you consider yourself a beer connoisseur and like to party. You can do all that and eat at Radegast Hall & Biergarten. The Austrian/German menu perfectly compliments the 12 beers on tap and more than 30 German and Austrian bottles at this large beer hall. One of the oldest and best hipster hangout coffee shops, the Verb Cafe offers up excellent coffee and baked goods, a boho vibe, and big windows to watch the days pass while collecting unemployment!
Friday December 4
Check out the rock and soul music of Willpilot who have ska elements and some great songs ready to ignite a party. This party band is best experienced live. There’s a lot of restaurants popping up in Greenpoint nowadays. The Japanese restaurant Wasabi has been there before many of them and serves up some of the best sushi in that hood. A good local bar, Bar Matchless is that low-key place where you can chill, get a drink and not have to scream at the top of your lungs to make conversation. Though many of the Polish residents and several key restaurants have gone and moved to Ridgewood, Queens, one Polish mainstay of Greenpoint ain’t going anywhere and for good reason as Christina’s was and still is the best Polish restaurant in Greenpoint. Try the pierogi’s which will run you around $6.50 with most menu items under $10,
Friday December 4
If you like Afrobeat, check out this show with Ikebe Shakedown who make some great afro funk. Joining them are Mamarazzi, Zongo Junction, and DJ Afro-Marc. If your feeling German BBQ, you can head over to Fette Sau (fat pig in German), where the owners of nearby bar Spuyten Duyvil have opened up this meat only restaurant serving up some of the best pork and beef in NYC. For drinks, Spuyten Duyvil is a beer lovers dream, with a selection from all over the world, friendly and knowledgeable bartenders and a neighborhood feel, it’s no wonder this place has been so successful. If you’re still ready for more, you must hit Union Pool, where there’s always a band playing, great DJs, and plenty of action.
Saturday December 5
Location: Lower East Side, NYC
Bands: El Vez & Los Straitjackets And The Lovely Elvettes Get Tickets Here
Show time: 8 PM
Venue: Bowery Ballroom
Food: San Loco
Drink: Max Fish
Miscellaneous: Sugar Sweet Sunshine
Put on your best lucha libre masks cause it’s Christmas! Los Straitjackets, one of the only mask wearing, surf guitar playing bands out there today are joined by El Vez and The Lovely Elvettes for ¡Viva Christmas! A celebration of Christmas Los Straitjackets style. San Loco serves inexpensive Mexican food. You can get a heaping amount of nachos for as little as $3.75, and telling by the heavy traffic, the place is doing just fine. What I like about Max Fish is that it’s a local bar for local artists. It’s walls play host monthly for art exhibitions, there’s a pool table in the back, and drinks aren’t pricey, like many new bars springing up in this neighborhood. For one of the best cupcakes in the city, Sugar Sweet Sunshine has 10 varieties, on top of cakes. Try the Sexy Red Velvet or the Bob, a yellow cupcake with chocolate almond buttercream.
Saturday December 5
Location: Red Hook, Brooklyn
Art: Wearing Whitman’s Words; A Typographic Exploration
Show time: 6-9 PM; FREE
Venue: Lucky Gallery
Food: Red Hook Cafe and Grill
Miscellaneous: Mazzola Bakery
With the muse being Walt Whitman’s book Leaves of Grass, in this exhibition Wearing Whitman’s Words; A Typographic Exploration designers take excerpts from the book to explore letter form using various typefaces, which will be put on t-shirts. Plus everyone will receive a free t-shirt extending the show beyond its walls. Curated by Ben Peterson, artists include Friends of Type, Jennifer Heuer, Jessica Hische, Justin Thomas Kay, Pablo A. Medina, Ed Nacional, Meg Paradise, Pillow Fort, and Travis Simon. At Red Hook Cafe and Grill you can get your deli fare for reasonable prices. Their breakfast and lunches are where it’s at and best of all everything on the menu is well under $10. Moonshine is a bar that’s part dive and part hipster with a pool table and Big Buck Hunter. It’s a can’t lose situation. Nearby, at the Mazzola Bakery, try the Neapolitan Lard Bread, tasting better than it sounds it’s made with two types of parmesan cheese and a hardboiled egg, seriously!
Sunday December 6
Brooklyn based post-punk act Telltale return to Piano’s to play “Perfect Prescription” a FREE monthly shoegaze/psych/post punk night presented by Paul Dillon, J Space (a place to bury strangers) with DJ Voidsong. With meaty hooks and dreamy soundscapes, this band will put you into a daze you may not want to escape. If you’re starving, I mean really starving, head over to Katz’s Deli. This old school deli packs on the pastrami a mile high. The portions are huge and the place is classic NY. For drinks, check out In Vino on the corner of East 4th and Avenue B. It has such a stunning array of vino choices it lead the Wine Spectator to call it, “One of the most outstanding restaurant wine lists in the world.” Not to mention the seductive allure of its cavernous décor. Stop by Ludlow Guitars if there’s time and peruse through some magnificent rare and new music equipment from inexpensive to guitars that you will have to save dearly to afford.