8 Days a Week: Dark Crystals, Half Moons, All Black Everything



FOISTED EAST | One of the summer's successful music series, Are You Kidding Me? Tapes' Thursday night showcases of weird, experimental, and next-wave rock, has moved from Geno's Rock Club to Bayside's Urban Farm Fermentory. Besides bands of unpredictable and high-personality musicians, the prime virtue of this series, the project of a DIY tape label project by musician Chris Gervais and Jason Engler, is its ubiquity. A cheap weekly showcase of local rock stuff is pretty necessary to keep a scene alive. Tonight's affair, by slow-build alt-country act Tall Horse; the gorgeously soaring sounds of Bangor's five-piece indie unit Wait; and Portland's emotionally soaked Cape Cannons, fronted by Dustin Saucier; should be a solid hang.

| 8 pm | Urban Farm Fermentory, 200 Anderson St., Portland | $3 | www.fermentory.com


SKEKSI YOUTH | The late revolutionary puppeteer Jim Henson's 1983 film masterpiece The Dark Crystal sees a late-night screening at Nickelodeon tonight, part of their laudable late-night series every Thursday. The struggle between the Skeksis and Mystics turned out quite a bit darker in execution than Henson imagined — it is, ostensibly, a kids' film, but it somehow cut a lot deeper than the youth standard. Like a lot of Henson's work, the film's capacity awakened an appreciation of the power of puppeteering among new audiences and practitioners. | 7:30 pm | Nickelodeon Cinemas, 1 Temple St.., Portland | www.patriotcinemas.com


INTERTEXT | A true highlight of last year's film festival circuit, the documentary Cameraperson compiles numerous scenes and outtakes from decades of cinematographer Kirsten Johnson's career in documentary film — all for films she didn't direct. What appears like an abstract formless collage of seemingly unrelated footage takes on incredible and resonant shape, as Johnson somehow massages the footage to tell stories not only of her ethics behind the camera, but tales much closer to home. A recommended public screening, and free. | 6:30 pm | Portland Public Library, 5 Monument Sq., Portland | www.portlandlibrary.com




FROM WITHIN | As uprisings swell once again in St. Louis after last week's acquittal of white Officer Jason Stockley, who was let go after being charged with the murder of black driver Anthony Lamar Smith in December 2011, you should make sure to see Sabaah Folayan's Whose Streets?, the searing on-the-ground documentary of the protests and actions in and surrounding Ferguson after the murder of Michael Brown in 2014. Folayan's film screened twice at SPACE Gallery last week, but receives a full run at Brunswick's Frontier, opening tonight. With reports that St. Louis cops in riot gear have begun to co-opt the chant, you owe it to yourself and others to know its history. | 3 & 7 pm (two screenings) | Frontier, 14 Maine St., Brunswick | $6-8 | www.explorefrontier.com


HEY! | Hear the sound of contemporary America as Americana/country/pop group The Head and the Heart swoops through town this evening, playing on the season's last good and sprawlable lawns. The Seattle quintet are still riding high from the release of their 2016 album Signs of Light, and are major users of the so-called "Millennial Whoop," the ubiquitous whoah-ah sound jumping between the third and fifth notes of a key that musicologists and irritated bloggers have tracked down to a name, pattern, and science (which are, hopefully, the first steps toward its obsolescence). | 7:30 pm | Thompson's Point, Portland | www.statetheatreportland.com




BACTERIALITY | Today's Beer Meets Wood Festival, put on by the definitive Beer Advocate, gathers the finest examples of breweries adopting the trend of aging beer in wood. Today's tastings should feature beers aged in bourbon-soaked barrels, fresh oak, weird bacteria, and all other varieties, collecting over 200 beers from 20 states across the U.S. (and Belgium, of course, known for its funk in this department). Wood-aging has a long history, and these folks know it. | 6 pm | Portland Company Complex, 58 Fore St. Portland | $55 | www.beeradvocate.com  


BOOTSTOMP | Off the path in Casco, Maine's Half Moon Jug Band of throwback players whoops it up for awhile at the Carousel Horse Farm, where a barbecue and kids' pony and wagon rides round out a heartwarming benefit for the nonprofit Jackman Preschool, in nearby Jackman, Maine. The whole shindig starts at 2, but the corn hole tournament at 3 is when things really get going. | 2-7 pm | Carousel Horse Farm, 69 Leach Hill Rd. Casco | $30, $10-15 youth | https://chfmaine.com/ 



POST-PARALYSIS | Now nine months into a Trump administration, the threats to democracy, working and marginalized people, and other civic institutions have moved from nebulous and abstract to a lot more defined. The GOP has launched yet another attempt to repeal the ACA, trying to strongarm the Graham-Cassidy Bill through Congress, and ICE raids are continuing to threaten vulnerable immigrant people throughout the country. Whatever your participation level is in anti-oppression politics, you might find it useful to have today's "Active Bystander Training" under your belt. A workshop hosted by Portland organization Prevention.Action.Change, this training at the outer Forest Planned Parenthood will help you know specifically what to do when witnessing hate speech and violence enacted on another person in your presence. | 4-6:30 pm | Planned Parenthood, 970 Forest Ave., Portland | $10 sugg. donation | https://pacmaine.com/


MAKE YOUR NIGHT | There's an inspired kind of variety show down at Zero Station tonight called "All Black Everything," combining comedy (James Swaka), poetry (Nyanen Deng), dance (the art-pop dance hybrid group Hi Tiger), hip hop (DJ/producer 32french and rapper AFRiCAN DUNDADA), and paintings by celebrated artist Daniel Minter. Produced by Derek Jackson (a contributor to this newspaper), who has a knack for assembling exciting contemporary shows of artists in disparate mediums, genres, and forms. | 8 pm | Zero Station, 222 Anderson St. Portland | by donation 



INDIVISIBLE | If you've exhausted Black Mirror and Westworld and are thirsty for some more quixotic, dystopian techno-futurist fiction, hop on over to today's screening of Marjorie Prime, a film adapted from the stage by Michael Almereyda (Experimenter, Hamlet (2000), Nadja) about a service that provides holographic representations of deceased loved ones. | Fri 2 & 6:30pm; Sat-Sun 2pm | Portland Museum of Art, 7 Congress Square, Portland | $8 | www.portlandmuseum.org




PLAY GAMES, HEAL KIDS | Channel your irrational love for meaningless competition into something good today! Register a team of four and bowl for the highest score at this Bayside Bowl fundraiser for the Barbara Bush Children’s Hospital. Team fees — which are $20 each — and 2% of food and drink sales will go to support the vital work that folks do there which ranges from specialized surgical treatment, to checkups, to treating complex maladies and injuries. Help some of Maine’s sick kids out and have fun in the meantime.

| $20 | 4:00 pm to 11:00 pm | Bayside Bowl, 58 Alder St., Portland | https://www.baysidebowl.com/ |


ADULT STORY TIME | For it to resonate, creative (song) writing is usually a deeply personal affair. Ideas once hidden in the deepest recesses of the brain are suddenly yanked, molded into words, and served still raw for public consumption— the writing process can be pretty nerve-wracking. But that anxiety is precisely what makes listening to writers read their own work so enthralling; it’s like a little preview of the gears inside their brain. Sometimes the gears are greased and spin flawlessly, while other times they are clunky and broken. Whatever the outcome, writers make themselves extremely vulnerable all for the sake of provoking thought; and that’s laudable. Three local wordsmiths —Ekhlas Ismail Ahmed, Roy Davis, and Jim Thatcher — will do just that during musician Chris Robley’s Verses vs. Verses storytelling event. This edition of the monthly series is built around the theme of “growing up,” something that unfortunately none of us are spared from.  

| DONATION BASED | 5:30 pm | Blue, 650 Congress St., Portland | http://portcityblue.com/ |


DON’T FEAR PEOPLE | Equally as nerve-wracking as sharing your words with others is the act of simply addressing a crowd of strangers on a stage. Trust us, there’s a reason many artists are introverts. If you’re a creative type bursting with good ideas, but haven’t quite overcome stage fright, Empire’s Great Open Mic Challenge could be the place to earn your wings. Organizers there are calling for comedians, storytellers, songwriters, and poets from all skill levels to conquer the stage and compete for the title of “Best in Show.” Will the acts exude confidence and charisma or crumple under the pressure of entertaining a — likely boozed up — Portland crowd? How they will be judged is surely all part of the fun. Hosted by Kari Hodgens and Luna Colt, this event kicks off every Monday.

| $2 | 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm | Empire, 575 Congress St., Portland | http://www.portlandempire.com/ |


WINNING COMBO | In a delightful merger of two great things — legendary rock-n-roll and eccentric cinema — Seu Jorge tours through town with his internationally raved about show The Life Aquatic, A Tribute To David Bowie. Set in front of a backdrop of screens playing scenes from the colorful and quirky Wes Anderson film, this Brazilian rocker will likely impress die-hard fans of the late, great Star Child with his solid covers and playful remixes. We’re glad this innovative show’s booked for Portland’s biggest stage; it certainly calls for it.

| $40 | 8:00 pm | State Theatre, 609 Congress St., Portland | http://www.statetheatreportland.com/ |




PAGE TO STAGE | What does it take to perform a captivating (and fairly authentic) retelling of the life of Billie Holiday on the theatre stage? It turns out, a lot of work beyond just laudable acting, and stage blocking. The cast and crew of the recent Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill show will recount how they recreated the story of one of the greatest jazz singers of all time during this revealing discussion on the creative process.

| FREE | 12:00 pm | Portland Public Library, 5 Monument Sq., Portland | https://www.portlandlibrary.com/ |


CHILLY NIGHTS | I’m guessing with the departure of summer, there aren’t that many viable weeks left for hanging out comfortably on the rooftop of Bayside Bowl. So take advantage of the few remaining nights above 50 degrees and head on up for the free concert planned there featuring Sea Level, aka electronica artist Dan Capaldi. He deploys a unique blend of shoegaze, chillstep, and trip-hop sounds to induce a colorful journey inside one’s own head. Hang out and let him play with your thoughts.

| FREE | 6:00 pm | Bayside Bowl, 58 Alder St., Portland | https://www.baysidebowl.com/ |


EXPERIMENTAL FICTION | KL Pereira, an author from Boston, visits Portland today with her new book A Dream Between Two Rivers: Stories of Liminality, a hypnotic, dark, and spiritually intense collection of stories that will deftly cross an intersection of experiences between females, children, and immigrants. She’ll be at Print Bookstore for an hour or two talking to Portlanders about the craft of writing and creating characters that seem equal parts fantastic and viscerally real.

| FREE | 7:00 pm | Print Bookstore, 273 Congress St., Portland | http://www.printbookstore.com/ |


MORE THAN BIRDS | A mesmerizing film screens tonight at the SPACE Gallery. Titled the Ornithologist, the film follows a handsome man named Fernando as he searches for endangered black storks on a river in Portugal. But after being swept away by the rapids, rescued by two Chinese pilgrims, and exposed to a myriad of strange obstacles that we won’t spoil, his journey changes from a scientific one, to an erotic one. Dubbed a “transfixing spiritual and sexual odyssey” by the LA Times, this film, as is often the case with avant-garde foreign art films, will either serve as the philosophical jolt your bored mind craves, or simply two-hour pleasure reel of natural landscapes and beautiful, interesting people.

| $8 | 7:00 pm | SPACE Gallery, 538 Congress St., Portland | http://www.space538.org/ |




GET TO WORK | You might not be really human if you’ve never muttered to yourself, at least once, “my job sucks, what am I doing with me life.” Perhaps that’s even how you’re feeling right now. That’s okay, because jobs that pay the bills and happen to be enjoyable and fulfilling are hard to come by. But that’s why it’s important to stay vigilant, and open to change whenever the opportunity comes your way. One such opportunity presents itself this week in the form of the Portland Press Herald’s annual job fair at USM. Representatives from dozens of businesses and organizations with job openings will be there, and they want to meet you! So take a shower, print a resume, and shoot for a fresh start.

| FREE | 12:00 pm to 6:00 pm | Abromson Center, USM, Portland | http://usm.maine.edu/ |


STAR-LORD ARRIVES | In a world obsessed with social media, political dramas, and debates over meaningless nonsense, healthy mental exercises involve remembering that we’re all just talking animals on a floating rock spinning somewhere within an incomprehensibly huge pool of blackness. Viewing life through this slightly depressing, but scientific lens, tends to dissolve any socially constructed anxieties people get outraged over on a daily basis; you see, the enormity of the universe can liberate one from the stresses of the daily grind. The renowned astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson is a perfect example of a man confident enough to move through life aware of just how small, and inconsequential humans are in the grand narrative of the universe. Tyson — of Cosmos and StarTalk Radio fame — has inspired at least two generations of people to look up at the stars in wondrous reverence, and consider their place in it all. You’ve seen Tyson drop many knowledge bombs about quantum physics, the fabric of spacetime, and astronomy on the Internet dozens of times, but this week marks the extremely rare chance to hear his cosmic revelations in person, RIGHT HERE IN PORTLAND. The tickets are steep, but we’d say Tyson and his invaluable wisdom, are well worth the price of admission.

| $60 | 7:30 pm | Merrill Auditorium, 20 Myrtle St., Portland | https://www.porttix.com/ |




IT’S GOING DOWN | Next week brings another slate of culturally relevant, emotionally stimulating, and just plain entertaining events to consider attending. Though modest in size, Portland seldom fails to offer up some new and interesting way for the hard-workers to spend their rare block of free time on. If you disagree, you either aren’t a fan of these pages or are seriously deprived of fun (or both)! Our next edition of 8 Days will surely bring you, the reader seeking a reason to stay downtown longer, with details on such happenings like: the rescheduled Tony Bennett concert, an intimate photo exhibit of maternity wards abroad at the Portland Public Library, an extremely funky (and affordable) concert at Empire, a public dance performance that defies gravity and takes place on the side of a building, an eye-opening university discussion on gender and religion, and two jam-packed nights featuring the beguiling talents of songstress Kat Wright. It’s getting colder, but that’s no excuse to stay at home!

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