The Weekend Shortlist July 31 to August 2

Friday July 31

Location: Gowanus, Brooklyn
Bands: The Mekons + The Horse’s Ha Get Tickets Here
Show time: 9 PM
Venue: The Bell House
Food: Press 195
Drink: Union Hall
Miscellaneous: O’Connor’s

Late 70’s rockers The Mekons have never really stopped touring and recording, making them one of the longest running acts of the first wave of British punk rock bands. They have a new album coming out so fans rejoice and expect to hear their hits and new material. Openers The Horse’s Ha play a gorgeous blend of jazz and folk music that must be heard. Great stuff here! The theme at Press 195 is pressed comfort food. A sandwich shop with quite the menu, they offer 30 types of delicious sandwiches like the turkey and fontina cheese sandwich with a cranberry and roasted pear chutney on ciabatta ($7.75). While Union Hall looks like a cabin at a ski resort with a fireplace, stone walls, comfy couches, and inexpensive drinks, you may want to stick around rather than barhop. A low-key bar in this hood, O’Connor’s is a hole in the wall where you can grab a cheap drink and watch the game on their TV, just like your grandpa sitting next to you!

Friday July 31

Location: Financial District, NYC
Bands: River to River Festival Presents: Polvo
Show time: 8 PM; FREE
Venue: South Stree Seaport
Food: Burritoville
Drink: Jeremy’s Ale House
Miscellaneous: Century 21

One of the founders of what is known today as math rock, Polvo were together from 1990 to 1998 putting out some great indie noise-rock albums and recently got back together and will put out an album in September. Tonight you can see how it all began for FREE. While most people buy hot dogs and grab a beer at expensive restaurants in the Seaport mall, you’ll be smart and head over to Burritoville for inexpensive and delicious California inspired burritos, all under $10. For drinks, Jeremy’s Ale House has a lively crowd and a beer list that will get you a pint for $5 and under. If you get down to the financial district early, check out Century 21. They won’t try to sell you some property, but they have some great designer clothing on the cheap, plus the place is huge to roam.

Saturday August 1

Location: Midtown West, NYC
Bands: M. Ward + Mike Watt & Nels Cline
Show time: 7 PM: FREE
Venue: Central Park Summerstage
Food: Zip Burger
Drink: Subway Inn
Miscellaneous: Kinokuniya Bookstore

Folky M. Ward has been making big waves since his 2006 hit album Post War and his recent collaboration with actress Zooey Deschanel for their album She & Him as well as working with a host of others, so find out what all the fuss is about for FREE at Summerstage. Mike Watt & Nels Cline will also be performing but it’s unclear if they will playing separate or together, possibly as The Black Gang. At Zip Burger they offer farm-raised, organic, and grass-fed meat and poultry, letting you build your own burger with plenty of gourmet toppings. The first time I went to Subway Inn I thought it was completely strange that there was a dive bar off Lexington Avenue, especially in this neck of the woods, but somehow it works. Born in the 30s, this bar has somehow remained, and thank god, as it’s easily the cheapest place in the area for a drink. For fans of Japanese pop-culture, Kinokuniya Bookstore has a large selection of Japanese themed books, videos, CDs, magazines, comics, and stationary.

Saturday August 1

Location: Prospect Park, Brooklyn
Bands: Dean and Britta + Crystal Stilts
Show time: 7:30 PM
Venue: Prospect Park Bandshell
Food: Press 195
Drink: The Gate
Miscellaneous: The Chocolate Room

Join electro-pop music act Dean and Britta as they play music live to Andy Warhol’s screen tests featuring people who had visited his studio like Lou Reed, Dennis Hopper, Nico, Edie Sedgwick, and nine others. Each four minute silent film will be projected behind the band. It’s like a good old fashioned freak-out! Plus Crystal Stilts open. Taking the pressed sandwich to the gourmet level, Press 195 offers 30 kinds of hot pressed sandwiches that make this place hard to get tired of. One of the more social bars in Park Slope, The Gate is a great bar with a wide selection of local beers on tap and an outdoor patio overlooking the park. A great little dessert and coffee shop, The Chocolate Room has a menu filled with everything made with some form of chocolate. Try the hot chocolate, you won’t regret it.

Sunday August 2

Location: Williamsburg, Brooklyn
Bands: Deerhunter + No Age + Dan Deacon
Show time: 2 PM
Venue: Williamsburg Waterfront
Food: SEA
Drink: Zablozki’s
Miscellaneous: Hugs

The Williamsburg Waterfront FREE shows are owning Sundays this summer with another winning performance as Deerhunter, No Age, and Dan Deacon take the stage at this large and gorgeous space. Let’s just hope it doesn’t rain like it did for last week’s concert! Just as much fun as any show and just as big a venue, SEA is one BIG Thai restaurant. Big enough to have a pool surrounded by tables as a giant Buddha stands above it. Luckily, the food is really great. Offering traditional Pad Thai ($7) to more involved dishes like the Mummy Fish ($14). On N6th, a street full of bars and restaurants, Zablozki’s is the local bar of the bunch, with a pool table and a friendly atmosphere and 12 beers on tap. What looks like some dark basement with tables and some couches, Hugs will end up being a dance party with an awkward blend of music genres that you will grow to love quickly.

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