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Best of Boston 2009


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Slideshow: Swaggering Growlers at Midway Café

Swaggering Growlers, live at the Midway Café on May 23, 2009
Swaggering Growlers kick off their tour at Midway Café
By DAVID F. NICHOLSON  |  May 27, 2009

Play by play: May 29, 2009

Plays from A to Z
Boston's theater schedule
By JEFFREY GANTZ  |  May 27, 2009

Interview: Paul O'Dette and Stephen Stubbs

The BEMF does Poppea
"Opera fans have often puzzled over the fact that Poppea  does not appear to have a character the audience wants to root for, since everyone has seriously objectionable traits."
By JEFFREY GANTZ  |  May 27, 2009

Local color

Grizzly Bear try to break out of the blogosphere
It's become a commonplace to say that "indie" is too vague to mean anything useful, but that's not actually true.
By RICHARD BECK  |  May 26, 2009

They get ill

Five Philly rap essentials
Jocko Henderson, Lady B, Schoolly D, Jazzy Jeff, and The Roots
By DANIEL BROCKMAN  |  May 27, 2009

Booty call!

The Huntington plunders G&S!
"Ladies and gentlemen," a cheerful female voice informs the Huntington Theatre audience, "the Caribbean Light Opera Society is proud to present Pirates! (Or, Gilbert and Sullivan Plunder'd)." The governor, she continues, wants to assure us that there is almost no danger of a pirate attack during the performance.
By JEFFREY GANTZ  |  May 27, 2009

St. Vincent's Actor gets a run-through

St. Vincent, live at the Somerville Theatre, May 19, 2009
There were not one but two clarinets on stage at the Somerville Theatre on Tuesday night, and that gives you some idea of how intricate Annie Clark's chamber-pop compositions can be.
By RICHARD BECK  |  May 26, 2009

Dancing in a new direction

Notes from 'Ballets Russes 2009'
The 100th birthday of Serge Diaghilev's Ballets Russes prompted the expected centennial tributes in Boston: a "Diaghilev's Ballets Russes 1909–1929: Twenty Years That Changed the World of Art" symposium and exhibition at Harvard University in April, and a "Ballets Russes 2009" festival this month.
By JEFFREY GANTZ  |  May 27, 2009

The Big Hurt: Wascally wappers

Plus failed massacres and reverse piracy
Lame as Marilyn Manson may be, I wouldn't wish his fans on him if he were my worst enemy.
By DAVID THORPE  |  May 26, 2009

Slideshow: Anime Boston at Hynes

Japanime lovers converged at the Hynes Convention Center on May 21, 2009
Photos from Anime Boston at the Hynes Convention Center

Dark passage

Film noir and the Production Code at the MFA
The Production Code, Hollywood's notorious self-censorship program, was instituted by the Motion Picture Producers and Distributors of America in 1930, but it didn't go into effect till 1934, when it was administered by Joseph I. Breen.
By STEVE VINEBERG  |  May 27, 2009

Marco Polo and Torae | Double Barrel

Duck Down (2009)
Duck Down has reached beyond its Brooklyn-grounded rap roots in recent years, signing such acts as Kidz in the Hall and Boston's Special Teamz.
By CHRIS FARAONE  |  May 27, 2009

Goodbye nasty

Amanda Blank cleans up her act
Anyone even minimally versed in Ms. Blank's œuvre would chuckle at the idea of her trying to keep things clean. Emerging from Philly dirty-rap crew Spank Rock, Blank distinguished herself among a sea of rap dudes with her dizzying spitfire attack and willingness to get nasty in a manner that was both playful and intimidating.
By DANIEL BROCKMAN  |  May 27, 2009

Smashing success

The New Collisions start things off right
It feels as if all the music people these days were rushing toward a hyper-electro-modern future where they'll be programming drum machines hard-wired directly to their erogenous zones.
By BARRY THOMPSON  |  May 26, 2009

Review: Summer Hours

Deliciously stylistic
In his understated, intricate L'heure d'été , Olivier Assayas comments on globalization and materialism by way of a simple story of three siblings dividing the contents of their mother's estate in rural France.
By PEG ALOI  |  May 19, 2009

Slideshow: Easy Star All-Stars at the Middle East downstairs

Easy Star All-Stars, live at the Middle East downstairs, May 15, 2009
Easy Star All-Stars at the Middle East downstairs
By DAVID F. NICHOLSON  |  May 21, 2009

Trans fact

When a person in the center of a media maelstrom has had a sex change, is it fair game for the press?
Aiden Quinn used to be a woman. Now he's a man. It's a titillating detail — but is it news?
By ADAM REILLY  |  May 20, 2009

Play by Play: May 22, 2009

Plays from A to Z
Boston's theater schedule
By JEFFREY GANTZ  |  May 19, 2009

More recession recipes

Big Fat Whale
Pity chips and fancy beans
By BRIAN MCFADDEN  |  May 20, 2009
comic list

Bringing the big comic-book guns to town

Other worlds
In its short history, the brand-new Ocean Gateway terminal hasn't seen anything like the hundreds of comic-book creators, collectors, and fans (900 strong, nearly half of them age 12 or under) who attended the inaugural Maine Comics Arts Festival on Sunday.
By ALEX IRVINE  |  May 20, 2009

Review: Off the Boat Seafood

Large portions, now served in a larger space
To find Off the Boat Seafood, a South Italian take-out joint that just this winter added a 10-table dining room and a wine list, mainlanders will pass through the Callahan Tunnel and embark on an exercise so challenging it's not unlike finding the Northwest Passage.
By ROBERT NADEAU  |  May 20, 2009

A self-inflicted wound

Why massive cuts to cultural spending are counterproductive
Layoffs, salary reductions, and budget cuts have become distressingly commonplace.
By EDITORIAL  |  May 20, 2009

Review: The Country Teacher

Czech writer/director Bohdan Sláma's histrionic drama finds dour teacher Petr (Pavel Liska) fleeing from a private Prague academy to a rural elementary school.
By ALICIA POTTER  |  May 19, 2009

Blood, bone, and mirrors

Prometheus at the ICA
At the beginning of Between Blood & Bone , a man and a woman stand at opposite sides of an empty space. A few minutes or a lifetime later, they're curled together on the floor, wrapped in the tightest possible embrace.
By MARCIA B. SIEGEL  |  May 19, 2009

The Fully Celebrated | Drunk on the Blood of the Holy Ones

AUM Fidelity (2009)
After two albums with cornettist Taylor Ho Bynum, and now dropping "Orchestra" from their name, this venerable Boston avant-garde street band are again a trio — and they're still a virtuoso ensemble.
By JON GARELICK  |  May 18, 2009

He shall overcome

Amadeus the Stampede keeps on pushing
There’s nothing lamer than articles that lead with cheap metaphors inspired by an artist’s stage name. But I can’t avoid this one: when Amadeus the Stampede rushes, get the fuck out of the way.
By CHRIS FARAONE  |  May 19, 2009

Love hurts

Tough times for Dirk Nowitzki. Plus, a Pitt Panther gets caught shooting blanks.
There've been some bizarre stories over the years involving gullible jocks and their inappropriate, multiple-alias-bearing girlfriends/wives.
By MATT TAIBBI  |  May 20, 2009

Death watch

Michael Connelly's newspaper elegy
Michael Connelly's newspaper elegy
By CHARLES TAYLOR  |  May 19, 2009

Cracking the wise

Mamet’s Romance with ART; ASP’s Much Ado About Nothing
I don’t know that David Mamet’s is a fine Romance , and it certainly doesn’t conjure love at first scene.
By CAROLYN CLAY  |  May 20, 2009

Timeline: Reggae in Boston

1968 - 2009
A timeline of reggae milestones in Boston
By CHRIS FARAONE  |  May 21, 2009

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