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See You There!

Artvoice's weekly round-up of events to watch out for the week, including our editor's pick: the Ecologies of Decay exhibit, opening Friday the 18th and running through October 18th. If you haven't already, be sure to check out our new and improved events calendar on-line for complete event listings, a location guide to find your way about the city, restaurant reviews, and more.

Ecologies of Decay

Friday, September 18th through October 19th

One scours demolition sites and abandoned buildings for materials—anything, really, that is or was part of a human act of construction—and reassembles the pieces into sculpture. Another is a photographer fascinated by fire as an endgame in the process of urban decay, as the ultimate consumer of the American Dream. The third is artist as taxonomist, whose work identifies, describes, and elevates systems that surround us but hum just below the level of conscious observation. Three artists—Dennis Maher, J-M Reed, and Julian Montague, respectively—whose work is ultimately concerned with our environment, how we construct it, and how what we construct ultimately contains the seeds of its own decay. Their work appears together in a three-way show called Ecologies of Decay, which opens this Friday (Sep. 18) with a reception at Artspace’s immense gallery. The intention of the show, according to the artists, is to examine the changing nature of the city—the way it is shrinking, the way its built environment is evolving or decaying—and to provoke a discussion of the manner in which residents relate to urban blight and the degradation of Buffalo’s housing stock. Maher contributes assemblages harvested from deconstructed materials; Reed contributes his photographs of urban fires; and Montague contributes a study of the creatures that reside in and contribute to the decay of urban structures. Definitely one of the fall’s most fascinating shows.

Ecologies of Decay runs through October 19. Viewing hours are every Saturday from noon-4pm (during exhibitions only), and by appointment Wednesday-Friday from 10am-6pm. Pictured above, clockwise from top right: Images by Julian Montague, J-M Reed, and Dennis Maher

—geoff kelly

6-10pm. Artspace, 1219 Main Street. FREE.

Friday, September 18th

The Genkin Philharmonic: The Music of Zappa

Frank Zappa made strange, wonderful music, and even though the man never had any formal musical training outside of high-school, part of his work’s interesting consistency came from his deep comprehension of musical composition. Though many wouldn’t assume complexity from songs like “Why Does it Hurt When I Pee,” Zap fans know of meticulous layers of sound that warranted his frequently enormous touring bands, which at times exceeded more than a dozen performers. This has made it awkward for aspiring cover bands, as a standard four or five piece just doesn’t do justice to Zappa’s more ambitious tunes. The Genkin Philharmonic, however, numbers ten. Originally steaming from the music Department of UB, the Genkin is now made of some of Buffalo’s top professional musicians, including UB faculty and members of the BPO. They are highly trained and take performance very seriously, which is necessary to undertake greats such as “Don’t Eat the Yellow Snow.” Seriously, it is. Opening for the Genkin will be Fourem and Peanut Brittle Satellite, this Friday (Sept. 18).

—geoff anstey

10pm. Nietzsche’s, 248 Allen St. (886-8539 /

Friday, September 18th

Ulysses' Crewmen

On Friday (Sept. 18) Nobody’s Art Center will be hosting the DIY theater troupe Insurgent Theater and their production of Ulysses’ Crewmen, a single scene play based on the framework of Homer’s Odyssey. Described as a “claustrophobic scene between two people, one of whom is bound and gagged,” this production questions and investigates our bureaucracy and those attempting to rebel against it. Written, produced and directed by Ben Turk, this complex original work is about the political kidnapping of a US Delegate. On this—its first—tour,

Ulysses’ Crewmen will be performed in non-traditional spaces throughout the northeast and mid-west, including a stop next weekend (Sept. 24-25) at the G20 summit protest in Pittsburgh. Ben Turk is co-founder of the theater troupe and has written other full length plays such as Bring the War Home, and pushed boundaries with anarchist theatrical experiments like Play in a Day (a full length play written, constructed, rehearsed, and performed in a 24 hour period). Space is limited so get there early. For more info, preview and tour journal check out

—derek masters

8pm.Nobody’s Art Center, 1121 Elmwood Ave. $5 recommended donation

Saturday, September 19th


You know a band’s getting big when they have to remove the profanity from their original name. Yes, sadly, this will Starfucker’s last tour as Starfucker. The name seems just fine as is, not least because it reminds me of that Stones song from Goat’s Head Soup (they had to call that one “Star Star” on the album, but we know what it’s really called). Plus, I don’t know what’s wrong with the more acceptable version, Starf*cker—which is cool because it has a star as a visual bleep—but apparently these guys want to play it safe. So the Portland indie-electronica band is looking for a new name and is open to suggestions from fans via their website. Perhaps they need one that better reflects the catchy, fun, lo-fi, harmonic, DIY-sounding pop on their two releases for the Badman label, 2008’s self-titled release and this year’s Jupiter. But where you’ll find the band’s edge is at a live performance, where the costuming is exaggerated rap meets glam-rock meets drag, to go with the instrument swaps and audience-engaging theatrics. Wooden Waves opens the show on Saturay (Sept. 19).

—k. o’day

8pm. Mohawk Place, 47 E. Mohawk St. (855-3931). $12

Saturday, September 19th

Carly's Crossing

When the folks at Lebros started their Fall Classic foot race 21 years ago they never realized that it would continue for over two decades, nor that it would turn into the positive force that it has. But that’s exactly what happened. This tribute to the late Carly Cottard Cottone, a little girl that lost her battle to brain cancer, benefits an organization known as Carly’s Club ( The organization was created by Carly herself to help children that have been diagnosed with cancer. Thousands of kids have benefited from her efforts. The event, which will be held this Saturday (Sept. 19), features prizes and activities for all ages and is open to all. To date Lebros Restaurant has raised nearly $80,000 by donating money from their annual foot race, and a portion of every order of ravioli that they sell. Now thats what you call putting your best foot forward and making a difference. One ravioli at a time.

—eddy dobosiewicz

9:15am. Lebros, 330 Campbell Blvd., Getzville. Contact 688-0404 or to register.

Saturday, September 19th

Big Night

This Saturday (Sept. 19), Just Buffalo will be hosting an event that manages to cram poetry, literature, music, and food all into one evening. The headliner Lee Ann Brown, editor of Tender Buttons Press, Professor at St. John’s University, and proprietor of an impressive poetics resume, will be reading from The Book of Practical Pussies, a book by illustrator Michelle Rollman that Brown contributed text to, along with other poets and artists. Damian Weber will be performing his folky, often difficult to explain, tunes. Poet Christopher Fritton and abstract photographer Kevin Kegler will be presenting their year long collaborative opus, Illuminata, a hand-letterpressed book that combines their work. Finally, Chef Geoffrey Gatza, former sous-chef at the Mansion on Delaware and founder of BlazeVox Books, will be providing the free eats. Michael Kelleher, Artistic Director at Just Buffalo is looking to turn this into a monthly series, with several more tricks up his sleeve for future installments including theater groups, opera, jazz, video presentations, and even an appearance from a real live beat poet. It’s enough to make your head spin, your ears flap, and your stomach grumble.

—ann marie awad

8pm. Western New York Book Arts Center, 468 Washington St. (@ Mohawk). $5

Thursday, September 24th

Sleepy Sun

Over the course of the past year, the San Francisco sextet Sleepy Sun has garnered a rabid cult following and many accolades in the online blogs. Their debut record, Embrace, is a stunningly beautiful collection steeped in the Bay Area sound of the sixties. The album features swirling psychedelic guitars meshed with layered Beach Boys harmonies, leaving the melodies to collect in your head for days after. Weaving between intense layers of sound and quiet, stoned introspection, Sleepy Sun stands among the Grateful Dead, Akron/Family, and the Sadies as pioneers in sound and diversity. Live, there is room for extreme improvisation, which often prompts audience members to yell out “let’s get weird!!”. If there is any justice, Sleepy Sun will be the next breakthrough in underground music. They’re playing next Thursday (Sept. 24). Opening is Assemble Head In Sunburst Sound and Chylde.

—eric boucher

8pm. Mohawk Place, 47 E. Mohawk St. (855-3931). $8