Live: Beirut And Sharon Van Etten Beat The Rain At McCarren Park

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Beirut w/ Sharon van Etten, Yellow Ostrich
McCarren Park
Friday, June 17

Better than: The rainout that at one point seemed likely.

It was hard to see Yellow Ostrich through all of the umbrellas when they first took the McCarren Park stage on Friday. By the time the band finished their first song, though, the umbrellas had been retracted and only a double rainbow to the north was keeping eyes off the Brooklyn three-piece, most notable for their use of multiple delay pedals to loop their vocals and instruments like trumpet or bari sax, or, as on the set's highlight "Daughters," all three on top of each other.

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McCarren Park Pool Takes The Final Plunge

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Photo of MPP groundbreaking via DBOB
Not that there were any illusions that the Greenpoint pool would remain a venue--the Williamsburg Waterfront area took over hosting duties for Jelly NYC's Summer Pool Parties a year ago. But now that the Williamsburg Waterfront space also appears to be in jeopardy--at least, according to Fightin' Senator Chuck Schumer--some may have entertained fantasies of somehow reclaiming the spacious concrete confines of McCarren Pool for concert and dodge-ball related purposes. But alas, the long-planned renovation of the pool--in order to restore it to its original WPA watery purpose--is very much underway. Today Mayor Bloomberg, Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz, and assorted other powerful men officially broke ground at the pool, vowing (according to Gothamist) to be the first in when the community waterpark finally reopens. The event was even accompanied by the ceremonial Bloomberg gaffe, according to Dumbo Books of Brooklyn:


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Good Morning, Hopelessly Lame iPhone Drum Circle

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That right there is the world's first, possibly only, and probably last iPhone drum circle, a September 20 McCarren Park lark organized by the artist Mike Koller in association with the MTAA collective. As explained by M.River of MTAA: "The main objective of the iPhone Drum Circle is to get a total stranger to do a little dance on our blanket. That and hopefully enjoying the last summer Sunday in the park this year for an hour." May this never happen again. [Rhizome]

JellyNYC Pool Party Line-Ups Slowly Trickling Out for 2008


photo by Rebecca Smeyne

Via our bros:

June 29:: Hold Steady with White Denim

July 20:: Liars and special guests who may have played an after party with Angus and the crew a few months ago. [i.e. Battles or Fuck Buttons]

July 27:: MGMT and Black Moth Super Rainbow

August 3:: Black Lips, Deerhunter, and King Khan

There are other rumors as well. Apparently the Breeders may make an appearance in July, though no date’s set. Team Robespierre’s in that same boat. [Impose]

Things We Forgot to Tell You in 2007 #1: McCarren Back Tattoos

Between the 2007-acquired inability to fall asleep before four in the morning and the very real threat of becoming a Styrofoam-chaliced hooch hound at one particular Williamsburg dive, yr friendly blog host has spent this past calendar year BFFs with live music. Felt low, I went to High Places. When I needed some advice, I sought out Girl Talk. Thirsty? It was time for Juiceboxxx.

Being a (theoretical) blog emcee and all, I would have liked to have reported back about every brush with Death by Audio, but fate (read: waking up one day in charge of this entire web site) intervened. Now that it's nearly 2008 and my hard-drive's gigabyte prison has just been investigated for overcrowding, I'm realizing that there are thousands of things I've kept from you, countless files/photos/recordings never shared, photos sent to me never posted. And so in the hopes of correcting this very grave internet injustice, SOTC presents a very special til-the-end of December series: Things We Forgot to Tell You About in 2007.

Things We Forgot to Tell You in 2007 #1

The Back Tattoo Outtakes of McCarren Park Pool

A fine photojournalistic moment for all of us here at villagevoice.com was this end-of-summer gallery featuring posterior ink-jobs spotted at those dearly departed Sunday-afternoon JellyNYC shows. Rated on a terribleness scale of one to five bad-dragon tattoos, this series proved popular with Fark commenters, not so popular with this guy. But what was lost in the pigmented hullabaloo was that there were countless tattoo captures left on the iPhoto cropping-room floor. And so for your gander-taking pleasure. . .

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Photos: McCarren 'Pool Party' Crowd, 07.01.07


photos by Rebecca Smeyne


1/3 in large, bearded man triptych


2/3 in large, bearded man triptych


3/3 in large, bearded man triptych

Live: Superchunk + Oakley Hall, 06.24.07


photo by Rebecca Smeyne

Superchunk + Oakley Hall
McCarren Pool Park
June 24

By Zach Baron

“We’re not good at dramatic entrances,” is Superchunk bassist Laura Ballance’s line when she gets onstage. Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz’s is “In 577 days, Bush goes back to Texas!” and Oakley Hall’s Pat Sullivan goes with “This one goes out to all the chic-ly radical people out in that new high rise over there.” All of them uttered the words “pool party,” which seemed disingenuous given that the only water in sight was the filmy, greasy trickle that coated a nearby slip n’ slide.

Anyway, that new high rise over there was presumably one of the many developments nearing completion on the edges of Greenpoint’s McCarren Park—developments which, if you’re being honest, are probably no more an eyesore than the sybaritic vision of the pool’s thousands of half-naked (tops and bottoms and tattoos all jiggling and distending) young folks, faces et al turning red in the heat. Call the day’s class war a draw.

At county fairs and folk festivals all across this country some version of Oakley Hall is thoroughly comfortable and even accustomed to stages as big as the one erected above McCarren’s empty pool. From the blankets and beachballs, the eyes closed in reverie, it was clear this was an experience people were in fact reliving, Oakley Hall’s particular rural allusions catching fire under the sun and bursting into a real life. They make hippie jokes — like “As if I weren’t enough of a hippie in this hat here, I just pulled out a twelve-string guitar” — but the fact is they make music for America's straight and normals, mom and dad and the kids and the craft fair. Which if you squinted, you could almost see, though not — for literally thousands of reasons — quite.

Superchunk also, as a friend put it, hurtle you back. Their college-rock façade is so intact as to be seamless: Ballance’s Tank Girl chic, her two-footed festival hop; Mac’s self-deprecating, nice guy stage banter (“I just realized something: We have to do that song again because I left my laminate on”); bald heads, Converse, boots and button downs, the slacker remainders of a loyally ‘90s band. They apologized for swearing on “Slack Motherfucker” as if there was someone there to be offended, or maybe just to see who was still in on the joke—after playing the song for 17 years, the only thing Superchunk probably worries about is how many people are going to know the words.

At McCarren, more than a few, and those who didn’t figured them out.


photos by Rebecca Smeyne

Photos: McCarren Pool Park, 06.24.07


Oakley Hall, photo by Cami D


photo by Cami D

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