Book Review: Shock and Awe, Glam Rock and Its Legacy by Simon Reynolds

This long overdue history of glam rock went from being a can’t-put-down read to an ill-conceived exercise in futility due to its superfluous final chapter. Titled “Aftershocks,” this chapter finds Simon Reynolds falling into the trap of so many latter-day critics who try to rationalize that this “modern" stuff like Lady Gaga is somehow analogous to actual rock n’ roll when, in reality, what really drives it is the same mentality one more commonly associates with advertising and, worse yet,…

8 Days a Week: Rituals, Other Realms, and Meditations

THURSDAY 29 YEAH BUB | The Maine comedian Bob Marley is a big fan of indefatigability. The dude presently holds the Guinness World Record for longest consecutive hours performing stand-up comedy (40 hours; the first 18 of them without repeating a joke), and takes the stage again for his 17th annual holiday series of shows at the Merrill Auditorium, tonight through Saturday at 7 p.m. This man does not quit. And he's synonymous with Maine humor as…

A Year In Preview: What will 2017 bring to Maine theatre?

Offering an apropos start to 2017, Mad Horse continues its theatrical exploration of the dark and apocalyptic, with the dark “virtual wonderland” of The Nether (January 19–February 5). It’ll be followed by The Last Days of Judas Iscariot (March 23–April 9) and the acclaimed Mr. Burns, a Post-Electric Play (May 4–21).   A special delight of the new year will be the return of Dramatic Repertory Company! The wonderful Keith Powell Beyland is back in…

8 Days: Hot meals, trap houses, and mammal touching

THURSDAY 22 TO REST OR NOT TO REST | The rock band the Restless Atlantic, from Portland, play a style of emotive post-hardcore that squashes together several iterations of the experience of the young American male. They’ve got a new, six-song EP out titled Afterglow, over which they index several traits of the genre: tortuous guitar licks, mid-tempo rhythms, soaring male vocals in a sugary tenor, you name it. They’re one of the finest groups…

A look back on a year of theatrical high points

After so much bad theater on the political stages this year, we might as well find solace in all the theatrical high points within the actual performance arts. Here we go! To start, one of my favorite experiences of mingled human despair and beauty was Stupid F***ing Bird, Aaron Posner’s sly, smart, very funny riff on Chekhov’s The Seagull, at Mad Horse. Posner’s writing is both profane and profound, and Chris Price directed a superb…

8 Days: A Winter Solstice party, a Spose concert and the Nutcracker Burlesque show

THURSDAY, Dec. 15 CREAM ME A RIVER | Rarely in human history has there been less of a need for writers to originate new writing. The morass of man-made content is so vast that screenshots, retweets, or memes could suffice, across several infinities surely. And yet some still endeavor to originate, often at their own peril. One of them, a local man named Douglas W. Milliken, has gotten quite good at it — whatever “good”…

Longfellow and Dickens: A Theatrical Conversation

              The work of Charles Dickens is nearly omnipresent this time of the season, but what about the writer himself; what about Dickens the man? As it happens, the Englishman was a close friend and correspondent of Portland’s own illustrious writer, the nationally beloved poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. And two Portland thespians bring that friendship to life, in a theatrical conversation between the two literary greats, An Evening with…

Anything Helps God Bless, explores Portland's failed ban on "signing" and the lives of those around it

“Twenty-four inches,” says one narrator. “That’s the width of the median strip on Preble Street at the corner of Marginal Way in Portland, Maine.” And then: “Thirty-two inches. That’s the width of an average man who stands on a median strip holding a cardboard sign, measured elbow to elbow.” Most of us have seen these men and women who stand in the street medians, holding signs and asking for money. A controversial 2013 Portland ban…

8 Days: A Sandglass Theatre, a Dubstep Bash, a Christmas Circus and the Winter Mystery Tour

THURSDAY, Dec. 8 Reverb Holiday Bash | The local non-profit Reverb is offering up a fun opportunity to “go green.” They’re making it so “helping the environment” is incredibly easy for you- all you have to do is show up and party! While you gulp down beers, mingle with friends and dance your ass off to live music (courtesy of Pete Kilpatrick, Hannah Dama & the Martelle Sisters), money will be funneled from the event…

8 Days: Cozy Concerts, Holiday Soirées, Fundraising Fun and a Racial Justice Meetup

THURSDAY, Dec. 1 Impersonating a Body | Étaín Boutique has collaborated with Dispatch Magazine to bring an all-inclusive, body positive, lingerie fashion show to Congress St. Gone are the days where models are strictly tall and skinny. Simmer in the glow of dozens of differently sized Portland models as they strut their stuff and flaunt some skin (and pretty pieces of fabric) during this empowering and interactive cocktail party/runway event. Proceeds will go to benefit…
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