Posted inArts & Culture

Life Sentences

Discipline and Photograph: The Prison Experience at the Peace Museum, through November 16 Hospice: A Photographic Inquiry at the Chicago Cultural Center, through November 17 By Fred Camper I once read that men, not women, were the victims in a majority of rapes in the United States. I assumed the writer was nuts until I […]

Posted inMusic

Gbeldahoven: No One’s Child

GBELDAHOVEN: NO ONE’S CHILD Regina Harris Baiocchi is a talented though wildly uneven composer whose instinct-driven music veers between sophistication and naivete. Her strength is vocal writing that borrows from a wide variety of idioms to evoke specific times and emotions; her weakness is her orchestration, which often fails to elaborate on or sustain a […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Heat of the Moments

Slaughterhouse-Five, or the Children’s Crusade Steppenwolf Theatre Company By Jack Helbig Kurt Vonnegut’s Slaughterhouse-Five is a haunting, beautiful novel, part satire, part allegory, part fictionalized history. It’s also a novel that seems tailor-made for the movies, because its protagonist, Billy Pilgrim, has a very cinematic problem: “unstuck” in time, he’s doomed to live bits of […]

Posted inMusic

Return of the Prog Monster

Various Artists Supernatural Fairy Tales (Rhino) Rachel’s Th Sea and the Bells (Quarterstick) In the mid-80s, a decade after punk rock’s coup d’etat, the movements fervor still saturated the independent rock scene–and its dictates were clear. Progressive rock was flabby and inauthentic. Synthesizers were evil. Suites and instrumentals were pretentious. Four legs good! Two legs […]

Posted inNews & Politics

25 Animals We Drove Out of Illinois

INSECTS Passenger pigeon chewing louse (Columbicola extinctus) Brown lacewing (Sympherobius occidentalis) CRUSTACEANS Ohio shrimp (Macrobrachium ohione) Lusty crayfish (Cambarus robustus) MOLLUSKS Winged mapleleaf (Quadrula fragosa) White wartyback (Plethobasus cicatricosus) Rough pigtoe (Pleurobema plenum) Pink mucket (Lampsilis abrupta) Tuberculed blossom (Epioblasma torulosa) FISH Bluehead shiner (Pternotropis hubbsi) Bigeye chub (Hybopsis amblops) Northern madtom (Noturus stigmosus) Stargazing […]

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In Performance: Croats puzzled by Goats

Nothing in its eight-year existence prepared the experimental performance troupe Goat Island for the reception it received in Croatia two months ago. Known for its eccentric, oddly structured pieces, the ensemble had performed its relentlessly nonlinear work How Dear to Me the Hour When Daylight Dies for the Eurokaz Festival. Audiences showed up “dressed to […]

Posted inMusic

Smoky Wilson

SMOKEY WILSON Mention west-coast blues and most people usually think of the smooth, jazz-inflected stylings pioneered by T-Bone Walker and carried into the present day by veterans like Charles Brown and Floyd Dixon. LA’s Smokey Wilson, however, has never abandoned his Mississippi Delta roots. Wilson’s slide-guitar slithers and stings with an intensity somewhere between the […]

Posted inMusic

David Sanchez Quintet

DAVID SANCHEZ QUINTET The saxophonist David Sanchez makes the most persuasive case for multiculturalism you’ll hear this year. (When you consider that jazz itself–by seeking and adapting new and disparate influences–is the most multicultural of musics, Sanchez’s case becomes all the stronger.) Even among the horde of practiced and powerful young saxophonists on the scene, […]

Posted inNews & Politics

25 Animals We Brought to Illinois

ARACHNIDS Honeybee tracheal mite (Acarapis woodi) Deer tick (Ixodes scapularis) Lone star tick (Amblyomma americanum) INSECTS Smokybrown cockroach (Periplaneta fuliginosa) European giant hornet (Vesap crabro) Asian tiger mosquito (Aedes albopictus) Gypsy moth (Lymantria dispar) CRUSTACEANS Spiny water flea (Bythotrephes cederstromii) MOLLUSKS Asain clam (Corbicula fluminea) Zebra mussel (Dreissena polymorpha) FISH Sea lamprey (Petromyzon marinus) Alewife […]

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Grassy Knoll

GRASSY KNOLL Most music under the silly rubric of “acid jazz” sounds like little more than watered-down funk, but Grassy Knoll lends the coinage some meaning. The San Francisco outfit’s recently released second album, Positive (Antilles), delivers a muscular amalgam of sounds owing as much to the guitar-heavy jazz-funk psychedelia of mid-70s Miles Davis as […]

Posted inColumns & Opinion

Savage Love

Hey, Faggot: I have given a lot of blow jobs in my day, but recently a very strange thing happened. I was with a new fellow, and the morning after delighting him orally, I had really appalling diarrhea. I figured it must have been something else I ate the night before. So I went on […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Other 25-year-olds

Operation PUSH Amtrak Health warnings on tobacco ads Alligator Records World Series midweek night games Southwest Airlines John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts Music of the Baroque Bangladesh 26th Amendment, giving 18-year-olds the vote Jesus Christ Superstar O’Hare parking garage Forum magazine Walt Disney World Federal Express Hot pants City flag patch on […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Success Stories

By Michael Miner Success Stories John Wessel on his early days and the Reader’s: “I started writing things in the early 70s,” he told me. At the time he was an undergrad at the University of Chicago, and the Reader was based in a Hyde Park apartment. “I had things in the Reader, three or […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Tharp!

Brat! Self-centered, contrary, ambitious, Twyla Tharp has never been boring. Even the poverty-stricken piece she made for Hubbard Street Dance Chicago a year ago, I Remember Clifford, reveals a feint in a new direction. Now, after disbanding her company in 1988 and doing pick-up gigs from Paris to Columbus, Ohio, she’s formed a new troupe […]