Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Chinese Dragon Celebration / Happy Birthday SPACES

This past Saturday evening, we were invited to a Chinese Dragon Celebration, "an occasion for driving off evil spirits and pestilence and for finding peace in one's life" -- sounded good to us! Other than said description, we were unsure what this celebration exactly entailed, however what we did know was that the invite was extended to us by (a woman about town blogger, fellow defender of Cleveland and Young Professional, and all around awesome girl) Genna Petrolla, and there was going to be good food, drinks and interesting people.

This particular celebration had two purposes: the first being to observe the Chinese Holiday of the Dragon Festival (which was started when Qu Yuan, a poet who was well known in Anicent China, and threw himself in the Miluo River) and secondly to rejoice in the fact that SPACES Gallery is turning 30 years old. You may or may not know that SPACES is the oldest artist run gallery in the United States located in the Superior Via Duct (the views from this area are lovely, and can be admired on our banner above). On this particular evening, the party was taking place at the supremely talented local artist (who also happens to be a culinary wizard), Qian Li's awesome loft.
We had soo much amazing food at this event, but the most memorable thing that we sampled and loved was Tsung Tzu, which is the main dish of the festival. The origin of this dish is that when Qu Yuan ended his life, the people threw balls of sweet, sticky rice wrapped in bamboo paper to keep the fish from eating his body. Some of you might find this slightly morbid, however -- this dish is quite delicious, below you can see Kelly mastering the opening of this Dragon Festival favorite.
Step One: Admire
Step Two: Unwrap
Step Three: Enjoy
Step Four: Repeat
Fortune Cookies displaying each hors d'oeuvre
Simply a gorgeous evening
All and all it was a great night. Special thanks again to Qian Li, Eric and Genna for this unforgettable experience*

Sunday, May 24, 2009

The Calm Before The Storm

As with most things that make us apprehensive, we've both learned it's best to (try and) remain calm. With this being said, today has been a welcomed reprieve from all the pressures that are ever-present in the world at the moment (this may seem to be a tad melodramatic). However, we are fully aware that many of these pressures are out of our control, one of which we're trying not to think about. . .being what we're feeling as Cavs fans going into battle against the Magic down in Orlando, in the most pivotal game in the series to date.

Everyone has their own unique and personal ways to relax. For us, we're able to acheive this state of calm by selecting some fun recipes to concoct and execute, drinking some vino, while listening to some good music. Even better, is being able to do so outside on our patio*

Sooo. . .

This is what we're cooking:

Cannellini Beans with Herbs and Prosciutto
(Giada Recipe)
Chopped Nicoise Salad (Ellie Recipe)

This is what we're drinking:

Garnacha Rosé - Wine of Spain - Za Za Dry style, slightly tanic, almost creamy, lovely ($9.99 from Heinen's)
Sauvigion Blanc (w/ 3% Gewurztraminer) -Lake Country, California - Dynamic Light, crispt, floral notes with a slight fizziness and sweetness from the Gewurzt, fantastic ($9.99 from Trader Joe's)

This is what we're listening to:

[Mp3] Seu Jorge - Changes (David Bowie cover, of course!)
[Mp3] Seu Jorge - Space Oddity (as well)
[Mp3] Modest Mouse - Polar Opposites
[Mp3] Modest Mouse - Gravity Rides Everything
[Mp3] Cotton Jones - Gone the Bells
[Mp3] Cotton Jones - Blood Red Sentimental Blues

ps - This is what we're reading:

Downtown Owl by Chuck Klosterman for the VTR Bookclub

For now, we hope everyone enjoys their evening and that the Cavs WIN!!!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Look Whos Coming To C-Town!

Thunderheist are the dynamic Canadian duo of Graham Zilla (producer/beat maker) and sis Salem (rapper/vocalist) who are bringing their fierce, hot sex electro-rap to the masses this June. On June 25th there will be plenty of bodies pulsin, sweat drippin, asses shakin and hard beats pumpin at The Grog Shop. You might have already heard their hit "Jerk It" in the film The Wrestler. If you have not checked out the video you need to it is a very original concept, well shot and you need to see what happens to this chicken...

thunderheist - jerk it from thatgo on Vimeo.

(mp3) Thunderheist - Jerk It

Handsome Furs
are another great duo from Canada coming our way as well. They are the husband and wife duo of Dan Boeckner from Wolf Parade and his lady Alexei Perry. A few months ago we were sad when we saw they were touring and were not coming our way. Luckily for us they are bringing their stylish, witty, and hypnotic indie rock our way on July 17th to The Grog Shop.

(mp3) Handsome Furs - I'm Confused

The Wooden Birds
are the new side project of the ultra talented Andrew Kenny formerly of the amazing band American Analog Set. The Wooden Birds debut album "Magnolia" just came out on Barsuk records last week. We are very lucky to have a chance to witness this great music in person on June 21st when they will be gracing the stage of the tavern in The Beachland Ballroom. The Wooden Birds sound can be be described as a more stripped down, minimalist, non electronic pop version of American Analog Set albeit still those lovely melodies that get stuck in your head.

(mp3) The Wooden Birds - False Alarm

The Veils
are coming back to Cleveland on July 24th. The Veils are from New Zealand via London and their lead singer (Finn Anrews) is the son of Barry Andrews who was the keyboard player in XTC. This is a band not to be missed much like watching a caged tiger being let lose and then bearing it's soul. Sadly we have not seen them in Cleveland, but we did see them before @ Osheaga festival in Montreal in the fall of 2007 and they were awesome leaving a lasting impression with us. The Veils will be joined on that evening by Foreign Born who hail from L.A. and make catchy lush indie/shoegazey harmonies. Sample some of their goods below. This show is going to be in the Tavern at The Beachland Ballroom, it will be a great, loud, intimate, sweat filled performance in that hot box.

(mp3) The Veils - The Letter

(mp3) Foreign Born - Vactioning People

Thursday, May 14, 2009

For Relaxing Time, Make It Suntori Time

Has anyone actually tried Suntori? A ring a ding ding! Um, anyway.

It has been a rather pleasant evening of relaxing and refreshing both our spirits and our minds. We have been listening to some choice jamz, drinking a nice Sauvigon Blanc (not Suntori, maybe next time), cooking some great eats while watching the Tribe beat up on the Rays, and relishing in the fact that both us can sleep in tomorrow.

And, it's a good thing we'll be getting some rest because Friday evening we'll be oot and aboot celebrating some Birthdays. But before then, we wanted to leave you with an infectious tune we cannot stop listening to:

[Mp3] Kid Sister - I'll House You (Jungle Brothers Cover) This girl is just awesome, we can't get enough of her. Hope you feel the same*

As well as a recipe we just whipped up:

Grilled Chicken and Spinach Quesadillas from the June 2009 Real Simple Issue (it seriously was crazy effortless to create and absolutely delicious)

Note: If you don't have a subscription of your own or feel like purchasing the issue yourself, feel free to email us for the recipe!

Have a lovely evening :)

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

2 Flicks 2 See :)

Okay, so there's no fooling anyone -- we really burned ourselves out during the Cleveland International Film Festival, viewing 12 films within nine days. Although we can whole heartedly say that every single movie that we chose to see was uniquely fantastic (especially Cherry Blossoms), we kinda needed a break from the good old movie theatre.

Note: And, to all you crazy people (you know who you are), many props to you for seeing like three times the amount of films at the CIFF than we did
. Quite impressive but I would love to know whether you were actually able to retain all of them. Even more respect to you if this is the case!

Now that we've taken our break, only hitting up the theatre once in the last month in a half (to check out Beer Wars), we are finally back and ready for more :)

Thanks to our buddy Justin for giving us the heads up, we are highly anticipating the solo showing of Medicine for Melancholy at The Cleveland Museum of Art on Friday, May 22nd at 7pm. This indie flick explores the relationship of two hipsters in San Francisco who happen to have a hazy one night stand and decide to spend an eye opening day together afterward.

Medicine for Melancholy [Trailer]

The next film is one we mentioned briefly a couple months back that we recently noticed has a release date somewhat within reach (July 17th). That film is (500) Days of Summer and just looks like a touching, relateable love story. One that is visually and sonically pleasing, no less! And, really, who doesn't adore Zooey Deschanel and Joseph Gordon-Levitt?? Well, on second thought, perhaps if you saw them both in Manic, I can see why not. . .

(500) Days of Summer [Trailer]

You may or may not have noticed while viewing each of these trailers that each movie shares something in common. . .Yeah yeah yeah, they are both love stories, but they also happen to have superb music played throughout them, which is something that most definitely lured us in. Let's see if it does the same for you*

From Medicine for Melancholy:
[Mp3] Saturday Looks Good To Me - Meet Me By The Water Our ears both perked up as this song unfolded in the trailer, oh so pretty. Too bad when we saw SLGTM they didn't tour with any of their female vocalists! boo
[Mp3] Au Revoir Simone - Through the Backyards These lovely ladies are gracing Cleveland with their presence on June 26th at The Grog. I still wear their cute little band t-shirt that they all signed for me a few years back, ha.

From (500) Days of Summer:
[Mp3] The Smiths - There Is A Light That Never Goes Out I think Jose and I might have a similar exchange that Zooey D and Joseph G-L had while riding an elevator if, you know, we didn't know each other or something. . .
[Mp3] Regina Spektor - Us The sound of her gorgeous, theatrical vocals over the bouncing piano keys and delicate string instruments is music to my ears.

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Starting the Night Off Right

While unwinding from our day, we are absolutely loving the refreshing seasonal Grassroots Ale (formerly known as Hale Ale from Hale Farm -- remember going there as a kid??) from Great Lakes Brewing Company. This particular beer is a "Saison" style, originally inspired by the pale ales brewed in farmhouses of Wallonia, a French-speaking region of Belgium, to quench the thirsts of the farm workers during Harvest Season.

Upon the first sip, we were in disbelief of how frangrant the bouquet was, however the more we consumed, the more we grew to appreciate the initially intense mixture of flavors. A unique balance of citrus and herbs is followed by a crisp and clean finish, which caught us off guard in the best way possible.

For now, we will leave you with some tunes that match the complexity of this brew:

[Mp3] Eulogies - Two Can Play
[Mp3] Great Northern - Houses
[Mp3] Dears - Meltdown In A Major

Bonus: All three bands are coming to Cleveland's Grog Shop on Saturday, May 9th. This show is not to be missed!

There's no denying that we are highly anticipating tonight's Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Semi-Finals between the Cavs and the Hawks. . .Although, we're hoping that the Cavs aren't rusty after being off for over a week. Regardless, it will be good for them to be challenged -- we cannot fool ourselves into thinking that the remaining games will be as easy as the first round of the playoffs.

<--Speaking of the Cavs, Kelly really wants this shirt (ahem!), or the v-neck version. It can be purchased online at C.L.E. Clothing or in person at the oh so lovely, Room Service.

Sunday, May 03, 2009

Our Saturday Night @ Low Life

Saturday night we hit up the most recent gallery opening @ Low life in Collinwood and it was a blast. It was the way we wish more gallery openings were filled with great energy, live music, booze and good people. This newest show @ Low life is called Mayhem featuring great art local artists and their creations inspired by The Day of Dead.

One of the bands that played sorry we do not know their name

This is the bathroom

Some very cool skeletons

This one is the corner staring everyone down

The public appreciating the art being created by megachurch (who rocked) and already created on the walls by some great local artists

Align Center
We slacked on Record Store Day and never made it to Blue Arrow records but we finally made it on Saturday. The floor in the place is sooo f*cking cool and the store it self is great too. Looking fwd to going back soon.