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House of Tudor 

Wednesday, Sep 23 1998
Put on your coziest pjs and join Miss Kristi for a night of seduction and cookies at the "Bedtime Stories Pajama Party." Miss Kristi will sing torch songs and read erotic yarns spun by the winners of SF Weekly's Wild Side erotic fiction competition. (We're talking real people and their real dirty thoughts.) Dirty Little Cabaret will perform with the Peaches Harding Trio (all in fuzzies) and Brother E., Thomas Roache, and Katarina Rando will supply their own erotic thoughts as well as some lascivious performance art. Prizes will be awarded for the sexiest underwear and the most cuddly pajamas at the Cafe Du Nord on Wednesday, Sept. 23, at 9 p.m. Tickets are $4-8; call 861-5016.

What do you do when your band is stripped of one of the greatest monikers in musical history because your, um, namesake has absolutely no fucking sense of humor? Well, in the case of REO Speedealer -- which will henceforth be called only Speedealer -- you make no-bullshit rock 'n' roll that will cause the old farts' ears to bleed. Speedealer opens for Reverend Horton Heat at the Fillmore on Friday, Sept. 25, at 9 p.m. Tickets are $15; call 775-7722.

You make a parade and you call it How Berkeley Can You Be? You get hippies. All kinds of hippies: panhandling Deadhead hippies, with parents who live in Kentwood; white-boy-dreaded hippies with vegan tendencies; scary mud hippies (see below) who get into pagan love rituals; rainbow-colored tree-hugging hippies with clothes made of hemp and bumper stickers. Just the thought of a Berkeley parade is enough to send any right-minded leather-lover on a one-way trip to San Jose. Unless you're a member of PETA (People Eat'n Them Animals). Two years ago, PETA representatives appeared in the How Berkeley Can You Be? Parade and nestled themselves between a Wells Fargo float and the Peet's Coffee contingent. From a distance, they looked harmless enough -- an original Doggie Diner head smiled warmly from their float -- but as PETA neared, onlookers paled. A roar of chain saws overpowered a nearby didgeridoo player. Weirdos dressed as animal-faced butchers, Charlie Manson, Farmer Vin-cent, and Leatherface tossed hunks of seared meat into the crowd. The smell of flesh mingled with that of patchouli, sandalwood, and sweat. A woman drenched in blood tossed GPC cigarettes and chicken claws at children. It was a hideous spectacle, one that should have warranted serious peace-love-and-granola retaliation, but the sunny municipality of Berkeley was caught completely off guard. Thank god for the Veget-Aryans who were on hand in military force to protest the bloody-mindedness of PETA. They goose-stepped through the ranks wearing creased brown shirts and crossed carrot-stick armbands. They carried "Meat Is Murder" placards and shouted, "We can smell you from here!" Meat flew. Bullhorns blared. Kids smoked. It was grimy chaos. Strangely, Berkeley invited PETA back. In turn, the invitation has encouraged other miscreants -- fire-breathers, defrocked priests, and disgusting clowns -- to join the carnage. This year, three dog heads will now make their way to Berkeley. Secret PETA organizer Oscar Myer is threatening to butcher a pig, which should be something of a treat. The procession leaves from California and University on Sunday, Sept. 27, at 11 a.m. and ends at Civic Center Park at 5 p.m. Admission is free as long as you're a freak; call (510) 849-4688 for booth or volunteer info.

When Royal Trux was signed to Virgin, longtime fans feared for the band's future. How would a major label contend with the complex, chunky, often inaccessible rock discharged from the collective consciousness of Neil Hagerty and his rough-voiced ingenue, Jennifer Herrema? After Royal Trux released the passable Thank You, the group seemed to lash out at Virgin with Sweet Sixteen. Accelerator, possibly RT's most musically accomplished work to date, followed. Of course, Virgin didn't want it. But Hagerty, a founding member of Pussy Galore, was no newcomer to the business of rock 'n' roll. Some clever negotiation got Royal Trux out of its contract with $300,000 and the unreleased album, which the band promptly turned over to its former label, Drag City. Accelerator clearly benefits from the couple's abstinence from heroin and, no doubt, from long hours spent in their isolated home studio/ranch (bought with Virgin money). Simpler in structure, but more imposing in mien, Accelerator finds Herrema relaxing into a bluesy croon as Hagerty creates walls of psychedelic rock six guitars thick. That's the way we like it, baby. Royal Trux perform at Bottom of the Hill on Monday, Sept. 28, with Zen Guerrilla and I Am Spoonbender opening at 9:30 p.m. Tickets are $7; call 621-4455.

-- Silke Tudor

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Silke Tudor


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