The British quartet had few words to share with the audience, but they let their music do the talking for them as they pounded through an hour-long screeching rock symphony, each song often banging along frenetically to dissolve in a din of lights and drums.
A hop, skip and a jump away from the Nationals Park stadium, Vida Fitness has opened its new Penthouse Pool Club (1212 4th St., SE, DC). There, Vida hosted a grand opening party for the summer 2015 pool season on Thursday, May 7, kicking off a comfortably upscale experience for club members.
DJ Finn spun some tracks over the crystal blue water of the Vida pool as guests sampled margaritas made with the Vida Tequila. The event served to showcase the amenities of the Penthouse Pool Club, which include a bar with a grill offering a full menu. The bar offers cocktails, beer and wine, and among the cocktails was the MargaVIDA — a tart blend of Vida blanco tequila, Grand Marnier, house-made sour, fresh-squeezed lime juice and fresh orange juice.
The menu, designed by Chef Spike Mendelsohn, includes salads (Watermelon Feta Salad, West Coast Kale Salad, others), sandwiches (Bacon Cheddar Burger, Lamb Burger, etc.), seafood (shrimp cocktail, ceviche, etc.) and additional offerings (hummus, mushroom quesadilla, etc.).
Guests can rent daybeds alongside the pool, or even on it, for a price, and of course they can rent private cabanas as well, which offer individual televisions and other creature comforts. Servers roamed the daybeds, taking bar and grill orders while guests lounged about.
From the roof at the Yards location, guests can enjoy views of the cityscape around them and peer down into the streets to see visitors to Bluejacket and other surrounding destinations. The luxuries of the Penthouse Pool Club are akin to those you would find in a Vegas resort, and the environment has quite a different feel than what many of us may have grown accustomed to in DC.
Vida Fitness offers a second location of its rooftop Penthouse Pool Club at its U Street location (1612 U St. NW, DC). The fitness club invites applications for membership through its website at http://penthousepoolclub.com.
Palma Violets perform at the Rock and Roll Hotel on Monday, May 11, in support of their new album, Danger in the Club, which just came out last week. In anticipation of the show, Mickey McCarter chatted with Palma Violets drummer William Martin Doyle, and he was everything you would expect in a member of the Palma Violets — quick witted, convivial and down to earth! I asked him about the new album, touring and his reputation as part of a great live band.
Check out the Nats this Sunday!
Nationals’ Press Release: ‘Major League Baseball has announced the winners of the 2015 Honorary Bat Girl contest, which recognizes baseball fans who have been affected by breast cancer and who demonstrate a commitment to eradicating the disease. The Honorary Bat Girl for the Washington Nationals is Tracy Lustig of Alexandria, Va. She will be recognized on the field and will be responsible for delivering the lineup card before the team plays the Atlanta Braves on Sunday, May 10.
On Mother’s Day, players and on-field personnel will wear the symbolic pink ribbon on their uniforms, along with pink wrist bands. Commemorative base jewels and dugout lineup cards also will be pink. Games will feature a pink-stitched Rawlings baseball, the official ball of MLB, as the official game ball. Many MLB players also will use pink bats, and pink Louisville Slugger bats, the Official Bat of Major League Baseball, will be stamped with the MLB breast cancer awareness logo. Many authenticated, game-used Louisville Slugger pink bats from Mother’s Day games will be auctioned exclusively on MLB.com to benefit the fight against breast cancer.
The gregarious and gracious Pierre Garçon, Washington Redskins wide receiver, greeted guests personally inside his new SpinFire pizzeria (1501 Wilson Blvd., Arlington, Va.) during its grand opening party Tuesday evening.
The renowned football player was joined by his partner in the pizza business, Fouad Qreitem (founder of Paisano’s Pizza), as well as fellow Redskins Ryan Kerrigan and Ryan Grant. The Redskins teammates were happy to sign autographs on footballs and pictures, charming more than 500 people who passed through the doors of the pizzeria, the second SpinFire location.
SpinFire offers specialized individual pizzas, salads and calzones at a very reasonable price, starting at $9 for most selections. The pizzeria centers on a process by which its pizzas are made in 90 seconds in its specialized pizza ovens. Guests also can enjoy gelato, fountain drinks and several bottled beers from local Port City Brewing Company (3950 Wheeler Ave, Alexandria, Va.)
During the grand opening celebration, I had the opportunity to sample several of the “classic” pizzas off the ready-to-order menu, and they were delicious. I tried the Meat Lovers Pizza — with classic red sauce, shredded mozzarella, sausage, pepperoni, meatballs, smoked ham and oregano — and the Prosciutto Arugula Pizza — with arugula, prosciutto, olive oil, fresh mozzarella, ricotta and citrus vinaigrette. The Meat Lovers was heavy and filling while the Prosciutto Arugula was light and zesty. Both pizzas bore a crispy crust and a softer middle, an apparent signature of their 90-second cooking process.
I also enjoyed sampling several gelatos, including standouts cookies and cream, peanut butter cup and stracciatella.
With its rapid pizza firing, and convenient Metro-friendly location in a block that’s really been booming with the additions of restaurants like the Heavy Seas Alehouse, SpinFire is sure to be a hit for lunch and dinner alike for anyone working in or passing through Rosslyn.
The first SpinFire opened in Ashburn, Va., in October 2014; this second eatery opened last month in Rosslyn. For more information and to see the full menu, visit http://www.spinfirepizza.com.
Here’s a cool mobile app: Bandsintown
The app will scan the music on your mobile device and find all upcoming live shows and concerts of those artists in your area.
It presents the upcoming artists in a Concert Cloud.
You can also slide the Concert Cloud scale to show just ‘Tracked Artists’ or to move it up and let Bandsintown add ‘Recommended’ artists based on what it previously tracked.
If not all of the artists you listen to are on your device at the moment, you can search for artists to add.
There is also a calendar listing of all your tracked/recommended artists.
Yet, if you’re curious about ALL shows in DC (or any city, if you’re traveling) happening every day, there is a feature that will list ‘All Local Shows’, including many of the smaller, intimate venues in the city.
The final cool thing is you can set-up notifications for when any of your tracked or added artists announce a new show in your area.
Check it out!
Anticipation. That’s what happens before a The Juan MacLean show.
Doors opened at 10:00pm at the U Street Music Hall for the modest line that had formed outside. Once inside, the sign at the ticket counter hinted the band was scheduled to go on at 11:30pm.
With time to kill, with a drink and a conversation, one could groove to Tommy Cornelis owning the DJ booth. He gave the growing crowd, many fitted with full backpacks, amble reason to dance.
And dance they did, because 11:30 came and went. Tommy kept the momentum going. Finally, just after midnight, the members of The Juan MacLean, including it’s namesake John MacLean, took positions. After building even greater anticipation, Nancy Whang, formerly of the disbanded LCD Soundsystem, appeared on stage and began to sing in earnest.
Yet it was as if the sound was on mute. Singing was evident, but none of the lyrics escaped the stage.
Partway through the second song, something snapped and the sound came alive. The crowd let out a riotous cheer. Dancing took over, and unconvinced head nodding was a thing of the past.
It’s a difficult thing to accept there was nothing you could do to help someone in a life-threatening situation — much less hundreds of “someones.”
But you and I aren’t an Iron Man, a Captain America or a Thor. For my part, I arrived to witness the destruction at the Pentagon on the morning of Tuesday, Sept. 11, 2001, in less than 15 minutes after terrorists crashed American Airlines Flight 77 into a newly refurbished wedge.
You see, in my day job, I’m a security communicator. As an independent reporter, I spent the next 10 years exploring the question of what could we have done to save those lives, and what can we do to prevent or mitigate future catastrophes of a similar scale?
Here in Washington, DC, teams of people got to work on different aspects of the problem, and some policymakers produced the National Response Plan, a policy that emphasizes the protection of lives and critical infrastructure.
It’s rare that the developers of such policy are the ones who also carry it out, but in the movie world of the Avengers, characters like Tony Stark and Steve Rogers get to do just that. They are fictional superheroes who get to represent what is best in all of us as viewers and readers. As a long-time comic book collector, I know and appreciate their world as well.
And so it’s absolutely refreshing that these movie characters appropriately put a great emphasis on avoiding the loss of human life. Spoilers lie ahead for Avengers: Age of Ultron.
After a successful inaugural year in a lot at Union Market, VinoFest, a celebration of music and wine, moves to Storey Park (1005 First St. NE, DC) in NoMa for its second year. More than 1,800 wine and music appreciators attended last year, and the festival aims to grow beyond that in its new space this year.
Vinolovers, an e-commerce and festival experience company, hosts the VinoFest Wine and Music Festival in addition to providing an online wine subscription service with monthly wine deliveries.
The headliner of VinoFest DC 2015 this year is none other than globetrotting DJ Questlove. Here is the full lineup of performers:
White Ford Bronco
DJ Adrian Loving
VinoFest DC 2015 will offer wines from around the world, including local Virginia wines, and classic wine regions such as South Africa, Italy, France and California, in addition underappreciated regions like Brazil, Romania and Greece.
“Most of these will be summery wines… high acidity, lighter alcohol, very easy to drink of a beautiful spring day,” said the organizers of VinoFest.
The festival also will team up with charities, including Make A Wish Foundation Mid-Atlantic, DC Central Kitchen and Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship, each of which will receive a portion of the proceeds from the festival.
Tickets are available online. Today, May 5, is the last day for general admission tickets!
Use the hashtag #VINOFESTDC to discuss your experience on social media.
VinoFest DC 2015
Saturday, May 9, 2015
Designated driver, $30
21+ to drink
“We have a roadie named Grossman,” said Matthew Murphy, the lead singer of The Wombats. “He eats four chocolate muffins a day.
“He’s the only man who can eat four chocolate muffins a day and still get thinner!” Matthew declared.
The audience caught and ran with the irreverent banter about Mr. Grossman during the sold-out show at the 9:30 Club on Thursday evening. At various points throughout the evening, they would shout, “Grossman!” — both spontaneously at the beginning of a song or at the behest of the lead vocalist.
“Actually, Grossman isn’t even his real name,” Matthew said later. “We keep calling him that in hopes that it will stick — like Reek in Game of Thrones.”
Erudite and entertaining, Matthew had the audience eating out of the palm of his hand as he led his band through a merry romp of songs from the three albums by The Wombats to date, including the latest Glitterbug, released last month. The new songs were very well received, and much of the audience already knew the words to quite a few of the songs.