THU
AUG 5, 2010


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Greg Proops

Why: Greg Proops has been a peripheral comedic presence in my life since childhood: a sort of bespectacled, sexually ambiguous Fred Schneider character; the guy I liked slightly less than Ryan Stiles on Whose Line Is It Anyway?; a standup I've seen a million times but never bothered to remember much about. Then, earlier this year, I watched Proops perform in a tiny, dim lounge in Los Angeles—a swift, breathless, blistering, 30-minute rant that somehow swept the entire universe of pop culture (cocksucking, cocaine, Kardashians) into one perfect moment of performance art. My apologies for the past 27 years, Proops. I fucked up. (The Parlor, 700 Bellevue Way NE, 425-289-7000. 7:30 pm, $20–$30, 21+.)

FRI
AUG 6, 2010


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T-Model Ford & GravelRoad

Why: Now in his late 80s, Mississippi guitarist/vocalist T-Model Ford probably doesn't have much time left on this bad orb, so it behooves lovers of authentic gully blues to catch him in the flesh before it's too late. As his song "I'm Insane" demonstrates, Ford is a tough SOB with the jail time to prove it. The man's built a formidable catalog with raw guitar chordings that hit like bar-brawl uppercuts and a ragged voice that oozes decades of hard living. (Tractor Tavern, 5213 Ballard Ave NW, 789-3599. 9:30 pm, $10, 21+.)

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SAT
AUG 7, 2010


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Old-School Kung Fu Double Feature

Why: If there were no The Mystery of Chess Boxing, you probably would be able to fuck with the Wu-Tang Clan whenever you felt like it. The film, about a badass mother-fucker named Ghostface Killah, is the source document of the Clan for good reason: It's one of the finest kung fu films put to celluloid. And the Grand Illusion is pairing it with Invincible Pole Fighter, possibly the best Shaw Brothers grindhouse joint ever (due, as the Abbot says to the IPF, to the "excellent poling!"). (Grand Illusion, 1403 NE 50th St, 523-3935. 7 pm, $16.)



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Summerfest

Why: The tiny town of Thorp is almost exactly in the center of the state of Washington. It was pretty much just sitting out there all lonely-like until a bunch of artists (Justin Gibbens, Justin Beckman, Howard Barlow, and the rest of the crew from Punch Gallery in Pioneer Square) claimed it as an art colony. Every summer, these artists celebrate by flinging open their studio doors in historic buildings—the former firehouse, Methodist church, and post office included—and grilling up some foods, leading a $20 rafting float on the Yakima River, and building campfires for art-loving, six-pack-toting campers. Oh, and bands play. It's Summerfest. (Thorp, Fri–Sun, www.punchgallery.org/summerfest.)

SUN
AUG 8, 2010


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'Hausu'

Why: This long-lost psychedelic ghost story—directed by Nobuhiko Obayashi and released in 1977—follows six schoolgirls as they embark on a weekend in a psychotically haunted house, brought to life through Obayashi's mind-bending amalgamation of live action, animation, and collage. As rereleasers Janus Films put it, "Too absurd to be genuinely terrifying, yet too nightmarish to be merely comic, Hausu seems like it was beamed to Earth from another planet." Totally true, and absolutely something to see. (Northwest Film Forum, 1515 12th Ave, 829-7863. 7 and 9 pm, $6–$9.)

MON
AUG 9, 2010


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Genki Sushi

Why: Genki Sushi is a giant Japanese conveyor-belt-sushi chain, and it's now conveying sushi to your mouth on both Broadway and Lower Queen Anne. It's got a fantastic electric-orange-and-white color scheme, it's super-clean, and the rolls (while heavy on the rice) are consistently decent. (Hint: Order nigiri fresh from your server; try marinated mackerel and halibut with shiso.) And it is so, so unbelievably cheap: The plates stacking up are at most $2 each. Genki says it's "America's family sushi restaurant," but it's really a paradise for students, stoners, and skinflints. Sit and watch a world of sushi go by, grabbing anything and everything you want. (Genki Sushi, 500 Mercer St and 1620 Broadway, www.genki sushiusa.com.)

TUE
AUG 10, 2010


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Market Salad

Why: All the basics are here: good injera, friendly servers, central location, sweet breeze coming in from Pike Place Market on a hot afternoon. But it's the little corners of Pan Africa's menu that make it stand out—people love the coconutty chicken, apricots, and dates; or a North African frittata with lamb sausage for brunch on weekends. My secret love is the Market Salad, described dully as "greens tossed with market fresh fruits and tomatoes tossed in our house dressing." In reality, it is the undullest salad on the planet, a fantasia of the freshest fruits and vegetables from Pike Place, all perfectly, weirdly, and awesomely mixed up. (Pan Africa Restaurant & Bar, 1521 First Ave, 652-2461. 11 am–3 pm.)

WED
AUG 11, 2010


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Hercules and Love Affair

Why: The 2008 debut of Hercules and Love Affair was one of that year's most outstanding and unexpected albums, a blast of vampy disco struts and early house classicism that managed to still feel like fresh air. Its breakout single "Blind" even recast tortured crooner Antony Hegarty as a mirrorball torch-song diva. Pity it took TWO FREAKING YEARS for the band to come play Seattle. They've lost vocalist Nomi Ruiz (who sang the achingly persuasive lead on "You Belong"), but the live act, featuring producer/mastermind Andy Butler, Kim Ann Foxman, and a full band, should still thrill—and hopefully include new material. (Neumos, 925 E Pike St, 709-9442. 8 pm, $17.50, 21+.)

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