Don’t Miss: Pet Shop Boys @ Warner Theatre, 11/11/16

Pet Shop Boys
Pet Shop Boys at the first night of four sold-out shows at London’s Royal Opera House on July 20, 2016. (Photo by Ken McKay)

The ever-fabulous Pet Shop Boys have been feeling particularly creative lately, releasing a series of very very good albums.

Neal Tennant and Chris Lowe always have been somewhat restless musicians, setting high marks for their disco-oriented synthpop. Their recent work with producer Stuart Price, pop king of modern disco producers, really has raised the bar, however, particularly with their latest and 13th album Super, published in April via their own x2 label.

Pet Shop Boys launched a US tour in support of the new album in Las Vegas last month, and the tour arrives in DC on Friday, Nov. 11 in a sold-out show at the Warner Theatre. (Resale tickets are available for DC, and a few tickets remain for surrounding dates in New Jersey, New York, and elsewhere.)

Like the very best of the Pet Shop Boys’ catalog, Super is stuffed full of cheeky observations on society as well as substantive ruminations on who we are — all set to extremely appealing disco and house beats. Super opens with the outstanding “Happiness,” an addictive house composition that carries a great deal of weight with its minimalism without at all leaving us empty.

“Twenty-something” is one of those tracks full of cheeky observations, assessing the cockiness of youth. The lyrics of the song are offset by a cinematic video that depicts an unfortunate young man in San Diego caught in an unforgiving cycle of life as a criminal.

Watch the official music video for “Twenty-something” by the Pet Shop Boys on YouTube:

The new PSB songs sit very well beside older numbers while seeming like a sharpening of the vision displayed on some of the duo’s ’90s material like the Nightlife album, while improving upon it immensely.

Parklife DC is so excited about this show, that we dedicated our monthly new wave party, Careless Memories (which happens second Thursdays at Dodge City!) to the inimitable Pet Shop Boys. This is going to be a great show.

The show is sold out, but resale tickets may be available!

Pet Shop Boys
Warner Theater
Friday, Nov. 11.
Show @8pm
Sold out
All ages

Music Park: The Go-Go’s @ Warner Theatre — 8/5/16

Go-Go's 01 Belinda Carlisle sings at The Go-Go’s concert at the Warner Theater on August 5, 2016. (Photo by Mickey McCarter)

“We’re going to play a few songs from a time before the producers got a hold of us,” said Belinda Carlisle to the audience at the Warner Theatre on Friday.

It was a favorite moment in a concert that was honestly a string of favorite moments. With that pronouncement, The Go-Go’s launched into the fiery punk “Screaming,” which they dutifully followed up with “Fun with Ropes,” a song about a little bit of innocuous if kinky fun. The two songs appeared in live versions previously on the 1994 compilation Return to the Valley of The Go-Go’s, which I’ve noted previously is a prized possession in my music collection, but otherwise always remained unreleased in a nod to the band becoming more radio-friendly.

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Don’t Miss: The Go-Go’s @ Warner Theatre, 8/5/16

The-Go-Gos
The Go-Go’s (Photo courtesy Primary Wave)

It was 1996. I had recently relocted to DC, and I was digging through the stacks of discs at CDepot in College Park, Md., for a specific prize. I heard The Go-Go’s had released a new single in the previous years when I was at sea, and I was determined to add it to my collection.

The Go-Go’s! Isolated from commercial radio for a bit in the early to mid-’90s, I had missed out on the introduction of Britpop to US shores, and I previously hadn’t found many personal favorites among grunge musicians. But with the five ladies from Los Angeles, I knew I would find fantastic new wave tunes to reignite my collecting passions.

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Don’t Miss: The Smiths: 1985-1986 @ Studio 1469

TheSmiths01 Nalinee Darmrong with some pix in her exhibit at Studio 1469 at an opening reception on June 17. (Photo by Mickey)

“Towards the summer of 1985, The Smiths were creating a buzz in the US, with the release of their second album, ‘Meat Is Murder’ earlier that year,” Nalinee Darmrong wrote in the introduction to her remarkable book The Smiths, printed recently by Rizzoli New York.

She continued: “They had done a short US tour previously, and news was circulating that they were coming to the US once more. I was graduating high school that year (I was 17), and Tony, for a graduation present, got me a ticket to see The Smiths at the Warner Theatre in Washington, DC on June 11, 1985.”

Thus began the adventure of a girl and her camera, as she spent some 17 shows tailing Steven Patrick Morrissey, Johnny Marr, Andy Rourke, and Mike Joyce around the United States and to the United Kingdom. Using a beat-up 35mm camera, Nalinee captured her experiences on film, and those pictures remained hidden from the world until now.

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Around Town: David Cross @ Warner Theatre — 2/19/16

David Cross
David Cross tells some jokes at the Englert Theatre in Iowa City, Iowa, on March 31, 2012. (Photo by wdecora)

Actor and comedian David Cross hails from Atlanta. And he returns home to see his family every year, particularly on Thanksgiving.

Inevitably, returning home yields some family quarrels, he confessed. And sometimes insignificant quarrels will escalate.

And it’s during those arguments that you sometimes learn something about family members that forever changes the way you see them, David told his late show audience at the Warner Theatre last Friday.

In an argument over not just the best way to plug in the Roku streaming player but rather the best way to look up how to plug in the Roku streaming player, for example, David learned something important about his mother.

“I found out she simply cannot take a punch,” he told the audience.

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Ticket Giveaway: David Cross: Making America Great Again! @ Warner Theatre, 2/19/16

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You might know him as America’s most clueless psychiatrist — Tobias Fünke on Arrested Development, a man who thought it was a good idea to call attention to his proficiency as an analyst AND a therapist by combining the two as “analrapist.”

Of course, Tobias is portrayed by the prolific David Cross, who also makes lots of sketches in Mr. Show and stars in other situational comedies like “Todd Margaret.” One thing he has *not* done much of in recent years is tour with a stand-up routine. But starting this week in California, he’s making it right.

Last night, David Cross launched his first stand-up tour in six years -— a six-month international tour, titled “Making America Great Again!” And it arrives in DC in a few short weeks for two shows at the Warner Theatre on Friday, Feb. 19.

Watch David talk about his show “Todd Margaret” and going on tour again in an appearance on Late Night with Seth Meyers on Jan. 12, 2016:

His early DC show is sold out, but you can win a pair of tickets to see the late show (showtime at 10:30pm on Feb. 19)! For your chance to win these tickets, simply leave a comment on this post using a valid email address between now and 5pm on Friday, Jan. 29. Feel free to leave any comment, but perhaps share your favorite movie, show, or joke by David Cross! One entry per email address, please. Tickets for this show are also available through Live Nation.

For the rules of this giveaway…

Comments will close on Friday, Jan. 29 at 5pm and we will randomly select a winner. The winner will be notified by email. The winner must respond to our email within 24 hours, or they will forfeit their tickets and we will pick another winner.

Tickets will be available to the winner at the Warner Theatre box office on the night of the concert. The tickets must be claimed with a valid ID. The winner must be old enough to attend the specific concert or must have a parent’s permission to enter if he/she is under 18 years old.

Good luck!

David Cross: Making America Great Again!
Warner Theatre
Friday, Feb. 19
Show @10:30pm
$35
All ages

Music Park: Pat Benatar & Neil Giraldo @ Warner Theatre — 7/8/15


A promo for the Pat Benatar & Neil Giraldo 35th Anniversary Tour by American Public TV (above).

Pat Benatar told a lovely little story at the Warner Theatre in the latter half of her set on Wednesday night.

She and her band were on the road supporting their second album with a tour, and their management told them to tune into new cable channel MTV on August 1, 1981.

They tuned in via the television in their “cheap motel” and watched music history being made as their video for “You Better Run” aired as the second video ever shown on MTV, making Pat the first female artist and her husband Neil Giraldo the first guitar player to appear on the fledgling network. (The English electronic act The Buggles debuted with the first-ever MTV video, “Video Killed the Radio Star,” and without a guitar in the band, of course.)

With that intro, Pat and Neil launched into “You Better Run,” from the hit record Crimes of Passion, which became her biggest selling album, certified 4X platinum.

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