When the ancient Polynesians invented surfing, they often used a paddle to help them navigate. Fast-forward a few millennia, and Stand-Up Paddleboarding, or SUP, finds itself trendy again. Part of its increasing popularity is that standing upright allows surfers to spot waves more easily and thus catch more of them, multiplying the fun factor. Paddling back to the wave becomes less of a strain as well. The ability to cruise along on flat inland water, surveying the sights, is another advantage. Finally, its a good core workout. If youre sold on the idea, schedule an intro SUP lesson, free with board and paddle rental, and you may find yourself riding the waves like a Polynesian king.More
In the past 30 years, light artists have reimagined an art form that has always had the ability to turn the night sky, or a simple window, into luminescence. Last fall, the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts turned its southern glass wall into a parade of sound-sensing lights, Lightswarm, that changes with the movements of nearby people and things. Future Cities Lab, the San Francisco design company behind Lightswarm, has originated another notable light sculpture. Located by the YBCA's steps at 701 Mission, Murmur Wall will light up in arresting ways as it incorporates local trending search engine results and social media postings. Onlookers can offer their own contributions, which will feed into the Murmur Wall's data stream and light up the sculpture. What's trending in San Francisco? If you're walking by the YBCA, you can see firsthand — at least through light patterns that reflect the city's volatile internet habits.
Murmur Wall debuts Thursday at 6 p.m. and continues through May 31, 2017, at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, 701 Mission St., S.F. Free; 415-978-2700 or ybca.org. More
Alejandro Escovedo hasn't had it easy his first wife committed suicide; his excellent, critically praised discs haven't set any charts afire; and he battled a recent bout of hepatitis without the support of health insurance (the latter is unfortunately the case for many sick musicians). With that in mind, one might expect his first release since 2002's By the Hand of the Father to be either brooding or vitriolic (and who'd blame him?). The Boxing Mirror finds Escovedo instead confronting assorted demons his own and others' passionately but free of self-absorption. His songs are mini-film noirs, populated by characters seeking a proverbial way out, mitigated by glimmers of compassion, tenacity, and hope: Have a drink on me/ I've been empty since Arizona and Hold to the light/ So no one will know/ We died a little today. Though his band numbers but nine members, it projects an orchestral depth and understated grandeur thank John Cale, whose production (alternately stark and opulent) evokes that of his own recordings (the pounding, feverish "Sacramento & Polk" would be at home on Cale's Fear). With Escovedo's plaintive voice exultant, the harrowing Mirror is one of the finest of this songwriter's career, as well as one of the best releases of 2006.
Sub Pop recording artists 'clipping.' brought their brand of noise-driven experimental hip hop to the closing night of 2016's San Francisco Electronic Music Fest this past Sunday. The packed Brava Theater hosted an initially seated crowd that ended the night jumping and dancing against the front of the stage. The trio performed a set focused on their recently released Sci-Fi Horror concept album, 'Splendor & Misery', then delved into their dancier and more aggressive back catalogue, and recent single 'Wriggle'.
Opening performances included local experimental electronic duo 'Tujurikkuja' and computer music artist 'Madalyn Merkey.'"