The only little bit of genuine controversy came from the three protesters outside the museum's fence. Among them was a man named John Hall who wore a replica of a Confederate war uniform. He brought an enormous sign that read: "The wind will always blow in Atlanta." Appropriately enough, when Hall leaned the sign against a lamppost, the wind blew it over. Hall, whose love of moot points clearly exceeds Randall's, even referred to the era of racial segregation in the South as "the good old days." He said he was protesting the disrespect of Southern institutions like GWTW. When I asked him if he'd ever read GWTW, he said no.
Convoluted: Thursday night, downtown's Eyedrum gallery hosted another of its inscrutable music shows. The headliner was the duo of Mark Cunningham and Silvia Mestres, who call themselves Convolution. Accompanied by electronic percussion loops, Cunningham and Mestres created harsh, echo-heavy, extremely repetitious soundscapes with their trumpet and guitar. The room was dark except for abstract images the band projected onto themselves and the wall behind them. Most of the slides projected onto Cunningham had patterns that effectively camouflaged him, turning the evening into an avant-garde game of Where's Waldo. I didn't really understand it, but since their name is Convolution, that was probably the point.
Eyedrum's neighbor, a restaurant and bar called Trinity, is developing a knack for the willfully bizarre as well. How else do you explain advertising a dinner special of tomato bisque soup to passersby on the hottest, most humid evening of summer thus far?
HiFi Bi: The Area: One music festival at HiFi Buys Amphitheatre Wednesday was designed by organizer and headliner Moby to be the Lollapalooza of electronic music. The nearly sold-out crowd of overwhelmingly white, suburban and mostly college-aged young people (the same crowd who packed Lollapalooza shows back in the day) proves that at least in Atlanta, he has succeeded. In addition to Moby, top acts included Nelly Furtado (who despite her claims is nothing at all like a bird), The Roots, DJ Paul Oakenfold and Atlanta's OutKast (my favorites). OutKast's platinum-wigged Dre, wearing only bright blue pipe-cleaner pants, moves around the stage like he's made of rubber, while partner Big Boi plays the cool straight man. In their current hit, "So Fresh, So Clean," they refer to themselves as the "coolest mutha funkas on the planet." After seeing them live, I'm inclined to agree.
One of the festival's sponsors was KMX energy drink. I dropped by the KMX reception tent, but was stopped at the door by a man who said I couldn't enter without an invitation. Supporting my theory that nobody actually likes the taste of energy drinks, he was drinking a beer.
Sacrelecious: Although it's not entirely clear to me how it really differs from any other night there, on Friday, the Chamber began a seven-part celebration of the seven deadly sins with a tribute to vanity. Soon after I arrived, the curtain on the main stage opened, revealing a medieval Christian throne surrounded by candles and black curtains. Dressed as a nun, a performer named Cathleen approached the front of the stage and dropped to her knees in mock prayer accompanied by the old Enigma song "Mea Culpa." The wordless performance that followed saw Cathleen stripped to a G-string by a man dressed as a priest named Ken who hung her by her ankles and pierced her nipples with needles. It was like a really kinky episode of "Circus of the Stars." When it was over, the club's regular music came back on and everyone resumed dancing as if nothing had happened.
The evening's climax was the Sexiest Vainest Woman Contest with the first- and second-place winners each winning a four-day trip to Las Vegas. It was emceed by Ken the fake priest, who berated the less-attractive contestants, most of whom were clearly too drunk to really notice. The next installment in the series is Aug. 10 (deadly sin TBA). I'm curious to know how you make an interesting evening out of sloth.
Kung Fu Fighting: Through the end of July, Dad's Garage Theatre Company in Little Five Points is running a fast-paced action comedy play called Action Movie 2. Though the play's ads make it look solely like a blaxploitation spoof, it actually hilariously parodies several '70s film icons including Star Wars, Saturday Night Fever and James Bond. On the small stage, they even manage fast-paced car and boat chases. My favorite reference was the nod to the blaxploitation film Dolemite in the form of a junky who appears early in the play, boasting about his toughness by saying, "I'm so bad, I kick my own ass twice a day."
yeah, because Grant Park is miles away and isn't a park
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