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
Unfairly consigned to a footnote in punk history, Radio Birdman spent the '70s toiling away in Australian proto-punk obscurity, whipping out authoritative little slabs of venom like the classic "Burn My Eye." The Detroit-born singer Deniz Tek never quite got Motown's diesel grime out of his spinal fluid, thus Radio Birdman always had more truck with the inchoate muscle-menace of the MC5 than with the fey nihilism of London/New York punk. Now that the members are all pushing 60, the Birdmen finally get a chance to tour America in support of an album with proper publicity and distribution. But you just want to throw a few A&R dudes and PR flaks in a time machine back to 1976 because what's the point now? Zeno Beach is a good effort and certainly serviceable as a rock album. The band doesn't try to match its youthful quick-burn snarl, slowing down and opting instead for the hazy, chugging melancholy of early REM ("Remorseless," "Die Like April"), flirting with petulant Strokes vocals ("Subterfuge"), and laying on whiskey-burn guitar licks that sound appropriately like echoes of remorse and depravity bouncing around an outback roadhouse. It's solid rockist stuff, some of it dispatched with real urgency, but best to save your $20 for the live show instead.
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.'"