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“Floral” trench, $99.

Call 1-800-345-5273 for a Dillard’s location near you.

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contents Issue No. 6 4

this ISSUE: Mission Creek Festival

March 18-31, 2011

ON THE COVER OUT OF THIS WORLD There’s no doubt the music and literary events at the Mission Creek Festival in Iowa City deserve a little extra(terrestrial) attention.

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www.cvpulse.com PULSE MAGAZINE

is dedicated to covering the arts, music, theater, movies and all other entertainment in Waterloo, Cedar Falls, Dubuque, Cedar Rapids and Iowa City. Pulse is published every other week and is a product of Courier Communications, P.O. Box 540, 501 Commercial St., Waterloo, IA 50704.

8 A little sketchy EDITOR Meta Hemenway-Forbes 319.291.1483 meta.hemenway-forbes@ wcfcourier.com ADVERTISING Sheila Kerns 319.291.1448 sheila.kerns@wcfcourier.com submit your event pulse@wcfcourier.com 319.291.1483 DESIGN TEAM Emily Chace Angela Dark Beth Keeney Alan Simmer David Hemenway

The Dubuque Museum of Art is planning an exhibition of figure drawings from a pair of talented artists.

16 Grab a magnet It’s our handy guide to your weekends, with all the live music you can handle. Cut this bad boy out and slap it on the fridge.

10 It grows on you Well, only if you haven’t showered in a while. But this fascinating exhibit, a microscopic examination of plants, is a fresh look at flora.

20 Talk about deja vu Get a look at new movie releases, including a flick where Jake Gyllenhaal must relive the same eight minutes until he locates a bomb.

14 Washingtonian Macklemore, an emcee from Seattle, will rock the house at Gabe’s with a little help from Ryan Lewis and Blueprint.

23 Witty women It’s a golden age for girls with good timing and a sharp tongue. They’re conquering the airwaves and silver screens one joke at a time.

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No one knows what their mission here is, but it’s no wonder they’re after us. With such talent concentrat concentrated in one space, they can strike a major blow to the arts community. Or maybe they’re tired of Elvis and want someone new to listen to. It’s hard to say.



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Whatever the reason, the Mission Creek Festival in Iowa City will undoubtedly be the target. If you’re brave enough to seek out acts like John Waters, Devotchka and Das Racist, it’s best to proceed with caution. Grab your tin foil and your colander. It’s gonna be a bumpy ride.


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TUESDAY, MARCH 29 Deb Olin Unferth and Katie Crouch, with a combined five books since 2007, will perform a reading. 7 p.m. | Prairie Lights | Free

WEDNESDAY, MARCH 30

KRISTIN GUESS | PUlSE WriTEr DavID HEMENWay | PUlSE ArTiST

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ission Creek Festival will take over Iowa City’s downtown from March 28 to April 1 for the sixth year. National, international and regional musicians, writers and artists will perform and exhibit their work, providing a unique cultural experience. “That’s where a lot of our passion lies, in finding stuff that people haven’t heard yet,” said Andre Perry, executive director of the Englert Theater and founder of Mission Creek. The festival debuted in Iowa in 2006, but its roots stretch across the country to San Francisco 15 years earlier when a young artist, thinker and community activist, Jeff Ray, wanted to create a festival to celebrate the musicians and artists of the Bay Area. His focus was on emerging talent and established underground artists. The small festival eventually became a citywide event that inhabits San Francisco’s music venues and art spaces. Perry, once a producer for the San Francisco event, moved to Iowa City and brought along the spirit of the festival. The energy of the University of Iowa population and local residents matched with a close circuit of venues makes Iowa City a prime spot for such a celebration.



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“The idea was not to copy their sister festival in San Francisco but rather to take Ray’s idea as an inspiration while building upon Iowa City’s intrinsic artistic strengths: a healthy underground/experimental music scene, a strong tradition of folk and Americana music and a vibrant literary culture,” according to the festival website. Festival audiences get the chance to act as tourists as they hop from venue to venue over the course of a week. “It has grown quite a bit,” Perry said. “The numbers have increased, but it’s always been high volume.” Choosing only three events that Perry was most excited about proved to be a difficult, but possible task: Guided by Voices, Ravens and Chimes and, of course, John Waters. “We’ve always been able to get bands we really like,” he sais. Perry notes there seems to be an increasing number of out-ofstate travelers coming to Iowa City for the festival. “But there is a strong base here in Iowa. We love it when Cedar Rapids, Waterloo, Cedar Falls, Ames, Des Moines, Quad Cities, and all the smaller towns (attend). It is really what we’re here for, to be a strong presence for Iowans,” Perry said.

Greg Kot and Jim DeRogatis, music critics on the Chicago radio program “Sound Opinions,” will host an installment of their show. 5 p.m. | The Mill | Free Nathaniel Rateliff, Peter Wolf Crier and Christopher the Conquered will perform in concert. 9 p.m. | The Mill | $8-$10

THURSDAY, MARCH 31 Julie Hanson will read from her poetry collection, “Unbeknownst.” 7 p.m. | Prairie Lights | Free

FRIDAY, APRIL 1 Emerging writers Tao Lin, Lindsay Hunter and Ted Thompson will perform a reading. 6 p.m. | Prairie Lights | Free Acclaimed filmmaker and writer John Waters will perform his one-man show, “This Filthy World.” 7 p.m. | Englert Theatre | $25

SATURDAY, APRIL 2 The second annual Small Press and Literary Journal Book Fair will host various presses and journals to present their newest issues and back catalogs at 1 p.m. Free beer will be provided by the New Belgium Brewery. 1 p.m. | The Mill | Free Granta Magazine will present a reading with Sam Lipsyte, Nami Mun, Ben Percy and Dora Malech. 3 p.m. | The Mill | Free Mission Creek’s first Lit Crawl will feature more than 25 writers showcasing their literary talents. 5 p.m. | Prairie Lights, Dublin Underground, Nemesis Tattoo 6 p.m. | RSVP, Home Ec, T’Spoons 7 p.m. | Georges, The Foxhead


MONDAY, MARCH 28

High & Lonesome and Shame Train 9:30 p.m. | Yacht Club | $15-$18

KrUi birthday celebration with Rubblebucket, Birds and Batteries and The Wandering Bears 8 p.m. | Gabe’s | $10-$12

The Poison Control Center, Land of Blood and Sunshine, Birth Rites and Mumfords 9 p.m. | Blue Moose Tap House | $6

British Sea Power and a Classic Education 7 p.m. | Blue Moose Tap House | $12-$15

The Olympics, Brass Bed, The Wheelers and Smokestack and the Foothill Fury 9 p.m. | Public Space One

TUESDAY, MARCH 29 Railroad Earth and Brighton, Ma 8 p.m. | Englert Theatre | $20-$22.50 KrUi pizza party with Colour Revolt, Ravens & Chimes and Caroline Smith & The Goodnight Sleeps. 8 p.m. | The Mill | Free Zomes, Skull Defekts with Daniel Higgs, alex Body and Joe Pavillion 10 p.m. | White Lightning Wherehouse | $6

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Utopia Park, Binary Marketing Show, Ex action Model and Dugoutcanoe 9:30 p.m. | Gabe’s | $6 Jeff Tweedy and Snowblink 8 p.m. | Englert Theatre | $35

THURSDAY, MARCH 31

Flight School featuring Willy Joy 10 p.m. | Yacht Club

Thurston Moore & Kim Gordon (of Sonic Youth) a.k.a. Mirror/Dash, Chris Corsano and Stare Case 9 p.m. | The Mill | $20-$25

Lipstick Homicide, Tit Patrol and The Good Habits 9:30 p.m. | Public Space One | Free

Les Dames du Burlesque & IC Kings, HOTT and Liberty Leg 10 p.m. | Blue Moose Tap House | $8

WEDNESDAY, MARCH 30 Or, The Whale; Chamberlin; and Kerosene Circuit 9 p.m. | Yacht Club | $6-$8 Mountains, David Daniell, Lwa and Cocoon 9:30 p.m. | White Lightning Wherehouse | $8 Blizzard at Sea, Native, Mondo Drag and The Freemasons 9:30 p.m. | Blue Moose Tap House | $6

Das Racist, The Hood Internet and RichRok 9 p.m. | Yacht Club | $10-$12 Slut River, Winters Ruby and Horse or Cycle 10 p.m. | Public Space One | Free

FRIDAY, APRIL 1 Here We Go Magic, Dark Dark Dark, Pillars & Tongues and Skye Carrasco 8 p.m. | The Mill | $10-$12

Rave! Mission: Beat featuring Radiohiro, Leon J and KO 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. | White Lightning Wherehouse

SATURDAY, APRIL 2 Guided By voices 8 p.m. | Blue Moose Tap House | $30-35 Devotchka 8 p.m. | First Methodist | $20 Dennis McMurrin and The Ragbirds 9:30 p.m. | Yacht Club | $8 Meth & Goats, Mayor Daley and CaCaw 10:30 p.m. | White Lightning Wherehouse | $5 ana Sia 10 p.m. | Gabe’s | $15

SUNDAY, APRIL 3 Kurt vile & the violators, Brooks Strause and the Gory Details, The Lonelyhearts and Paleo 8 p.m. | The Mill | $6-$8

MONDAY, APRIL 4 Wye Oak and Callers 8 p.m. | The Mill | $8-$10

individual tickets are available, or a limited pass can be purchased for $0, which allows entrance to the majority of events. Advance tickets, when denoted by an asterisk on the price, can be purchased at midwestix.com or at the Blue Moose Tap House and The Mill for shows at those respective venues. For more details, visit www.festival.missionfreak.com.

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MArch 8 UNI Museums Spring Exhibit

© 2005 Joan Wiener

Feb. 14 - May 14

FROM THE BOTANIC GARDEN OF SMITH COLLEGE

www.uni.edu/museum

Funded in part by Roy J. Carver Charitable Trust

This exhibit was produced by the Botanic Garden of Smith College.

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SEARCH PARTY Find what you’re looking for easily online at cvpulse.com EVERY T HI NG E NT E RTA I N ING EV ERY D AY

Go figures

Dubuque museum opens new exhibition

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igure drawings by Oregon artist Edwin Casuga and Kentucky artist Randy Simmons will grace the Kris Mozena McNamer Gallery beginning Tuesday, March 29. Drawing is the most basic and fundamental skill of all visual artists, whether creating a preparatory sketch of an idea or a stand-alone, finished work of art. For Casuga and Simmons, a drawing is just that — the finished work. Casuga uses a tangle of faceless bodies in his drawings to capture the interconnected struggles of life and



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success, while Simmons prefers highly realistic, solitary figures that dominate their space and tell compelling stories. An opening reception will be from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Friday, April 8. There is no charge for the reception. Dubuque Museum of Art 701 Locust St., Dubuque 563.557.151 www.dbqart.com


April 2

‘Forbidden’ film T

he James & Meryl Hearst Center for the Arts will be showing the documentary “The Desert of Forbidden Art” at 2 p.m. Saturday, April 2. Doors open at 1 p.m., and the event is free. Refreshments will be served. During Soviet rule, artists in the U.S.S.R. who stayed true to their vision were executed, sent to mental hospitals or imprisoned in gulags. Their plight inspired young Igor Savitsky. He pretended to buy state-approved art but instead daringly rescued 40,000 forbidden works and created a museum in the desert of Uzbekistan, far from the watchful eyes of the KGB. Though a penniless artist himself, he cajoled the cash to pay for the art from the same authorities who were banning it. Savitsky amassed an eclectic mix of Russian avant-garde art. But his greatest discovery is an unknown school of artists who settled in Uzbekistan after the Russian revolution of 1917. They encountered a unique Islamic culture, as exotic to them as Tahiti was for Gauguin. They developed a startlingly original style, fusing European modernism with centuries-old Eastern traditions. Ben Kingsley, Sally Field and Ed Asner voice the diaries and letters of Savitsky and the artists. Inter-cut with recollections of the artists’ children and rare archival footage, the film takes viewers on a dramatic journey of sacrifice for the sake of creative freedom. Today these paintings are worth millions, a lucrative target for Islamic fundamentalists, corrupt bureaucrats and art profiteers. The collection remains as endangered as when Savitsky first created it, raising questions as to where the responsibility lies for preservation of this cultural treasure.

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hearst center for the Arts 304 W. Seerley Blvd., Cedar Falls www.hearstartscenter.com

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GOO GOO DOLLS ALTERNATIVE ROCK BAND Hits include “Iris,” “Slide,” and “Here Is Gone.”

DAVID ALLAN COE C O U N T RY M U S I C H A L L O F FA M E R Hits include “Mona Lisa Lost Her Smile,” “The Ride,” and “You Never Even Called Me By My Name.”

UPCOMING SHOWS! ARCH ALLIES APR 16 H E R E C O M E T H E M U M M I E S M AY 1 4 G R E AT W H I T E / S T E V E N A D L E R A U G 1 3 PAT B E N ATA R A U G 1 8 featuring Neil Giraldo

800.582.5956 | WWW.DIAMONDJO.COM Tickets available at www.diamondjo.com & at the Diamond Club. Acts subject to change without notice. Must be 21 or older. If you or someone you know needs gambling treatment, call 1-800-BETS OFF. WO-031811011

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Micrographic images of plant adaptations fuse science and art Melody parker | Pulse writer Brandon Pollock | pulse Photographer

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here are social climbers and sunbathers. Drifters and squatters. Vegetarians and meat eaters. And don’t forget the guzzlers. We’re talking plant life, not people. Life on Earth has its challenges. Diverse environments have particular, and sometimes peculiar, challenges that force plant life to evolve and adapt to survive — and sometimes thrive — under hostile conditions. Some of these plants are beautiful, others are forbidding; then there is the Resurrection plant, which looks like a lifeless clump until rain causes it to unfurl its leaves and plump up from water retention. It’s a guzzler that has adapted to a dry climate and become drought-tolerant. Visitors to the new exhibit, “Plant Adaptation

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Up Close: A Biological and Artistic Interpretation,” at the University Museum in Cedar Falls can live vicariously through the lives of these plants via electron photomicrographic images and real plants. “The images are really beautiful, and they fuse art and science,” said Jori Wade-Booth, public affairs coordinator for UNI Museums at the University of Northern Iowa. “We partnered with the UNI Botanical Center to grow the plants for the show, which adds another level of interest.” The exhibit was produced by the Botanic Garden of Smith College in collaboration with the Smith College Microscopy and Imaging Facility and artist Joan Wiener, who created the enhanced electron micrographs.

These plants make their home in some inhospitable places like deserts. They cling to cliff walls, tree bark and limbs, like Staghorn ferns, epiphytic orchids and Spanish moss. They will climb over trees and shrubs, even buildings, to find a place in the sun. There are floaters like water hyacinths and Victorian water lilies that don’t sin, and hungry plants like Venus fly traps and pitcher plants that feast on flies and other hapless insects that wander into their jaws. With a pair of 3-D glasses, you can get a fly eye’s view from the inside. Live plants include pitcher plants, cacti, water hyacinth, echeveria, Venus fly traps and others from the University of Northern Iowa Botanical Center collections. The exhibit will be displayed until May 15.


Museum programs/events All activities take place at the University Museum. “Participatory Preservation: Heirloom Plants in a Changing World,” 7 p.m. Tuesday. Jenna Sicuranza and Shanyn Siegel of Seed Savers Exchange, in Decorah, discuss the important role heirloom plants play in plant genetic resources conservation. “Floral Adaptations: More than Just the Birds and the Bees,” 7 p.m. March 22. Listen as Dr. Julie Kang, UNI professor of plant developmental morphology, discusses flowers, their morphological and anatomical features, and how floral structures are adapted for various modes of reproduction. “Superweeds: A threat to global food security and society?” 7 p.m. March 29. Dr. Michael Owen, professor of agronomy and extension weed scientist at Iowa State University, will address the various aspects of superweeds, the implications of their occurrence, their ecological basis, and their impact on the future of mankind. Saturday Film Series: “The Private Life of Plants,” 1:30 p.m. March 26, April 2, 9, 16, 23, 30. In this ground-breaking series, David Attenborough takes the viewer on a guided tour through the secret world of plants to see things no unaided eye could witness. “Going and Growing Green: Sustainability & Gardening,” 7 p.m. April 12. Rob and Tammy Faux of Genuine Faux Farm, Tripoli, will discuss environmentally friendly gardening ideas.

Exhibit information What: “Plant Adaptation Up Close: A Biological and Artistic Interpretation” When: through May 14 Where: University Museum, 3219 Hudson Road, Cedar Falls Details: Hours are 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday.

Photos FROM LEFT TO RIGHT: Electron photomicrograph shows the multicellular hairs of an echeveria leaf. An extreme close-up of Boston ivy shows its leaf structure. Epiphytic orchids are nonparasitic plants adapted to living on trees, receiving moisture and nutrients from the canopy above. An electron micrograph of a dodder shoot wrapping itself around the slender pink hairs of a coleus leaf. A baby pitcher plant from the UNI exhibit. A compilation of images from the “Plant Adaptation Up Close” exhibit.

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COSBY’S SHOW

MARCH 24

7 WALKERS

FEATURING MEMBERS FROM THE GRATEFUL DEAD & THE METERS

MARCH 29

RAILROAD EARTH

april 2

MISSION CREEK FESTIVAL

MARCH 30

JEFF TWEEDY

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MISSION CREEK FESTIVAL

omedic legend Bill Cosby returns to the Civic Center in Des Moines for one night only at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, April 2. One of America’s most prolific comedians of all time, Cosby has dazzled generations of fans with his comedy routines, also captured on albums, best-selling books like “Fatherhood” and the ground-breaking “Cosby Show.” His comedy transcends age, gender and cultural barriers. Cosby broke television’s racial barrier with a role in “I Spy,” becoming the first African-American to co-star on a television series and won three

JOHN WATERS MISSION CREEK FESTIVAL

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consecutive Emmys. For his philanthropic efforts and positive influence as a performer and author, Cosby was honored with a 1998 Kennedy Center Honors Award. In 2002, he received the Presidential Medal of Freedom, America’s highest civilian honor, and was the 2009 recipient of the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor. Tickets: 800.745.3000, CivicCenter.org, Ticketmaster locations or the Civic Center ticket office.

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LIVE JAZZ EVERY THURSDAY NIGHT

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CHRYS MITCHELL ROBERT COATES UNCLE CHUCK ED EAST OPEN MIC NIGHT BEN COOK-FELTZ JARED PLACE RICK VANDERWAHL

&S UN OUNDS & GRO

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THE KEYS TO SUCCESS FOR NEW STEAKHOUSE amie steffen | Pulse writer

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hat’s better than one piano player? Two piano players. And that’s no joke. That’s what Darin Beck found out when, time after time, he’d sell out Joker’s Comedy Night Club in Cedar Falls for various “dueling pianos” shows at the venue. When he decided to revamp Roux Orleans and Bourre Lounge in downtown Waterloo, he thought: Why not dueling pianos every weekend? “People in town have been clamoring for a dueling piano bar for as long as I can remember,” said Beck, CEO of Barmuda Corp, said. “But nobody’s really dedicated a room to it.”

That all changed the first weekend in March with the opening of Black’s 501 Steakhouse and Piano Bar in the old spaces of Roux Orleans and Bourre Lounge on the first level of

the Black’s building.

Instead of live, local bands or DJs every once in a while like Bourre had, Black’s Piano Bar will feature a regional, touring dueling pianos act each Friday and Saturday beginning at 9 p.m. Scott Davis, Barmuda’s director of entertainment and late-night operations, said dueling piano acts will rotate on a six- to eight-week basis, so people can see their favorite acts again. “It’ll be a full, interactive show,” Davis said. “(Dueling piano acts) get the crowd involved, bring them on stage. It’s great for bachelorette parties, birthdays, nights out.” Acts won’t have to haul in their own pianos — Black’s will have them permanently set up between the bar and the host table, with seating all around. “This town hasn’t seen anything like it,” Beck said. “We’re really excited to pull it off.”


Josh groban

Coming to Des Moines

august 10

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Josh Groban will bring his 2011 “Straight To You” tour to Wells Fargo Arena on Wednesday, Aug. 10. The 7:30 p.m. show is in support of his latest album, “Illuminations.” Groban has created a set list culled from his four previous bestselling albums, as well as songs from “Illuminations.” The album debuted at No. 4 on Billboard’s Top 200 chart. Groban first broke through in 2001 with his self-titled debut, followed by 2003’s “Closer” and 2006’s “Awake.” Groban and his recordings have been nominated for more than a dozen awards, including an American Music Award, a World Music Award, a Juno Award, two Grammy Awards and an Academy Award. He has sold more than 25 million albums worldwide. TickeTs: The Wells Fargo Arena box office, Dahl’s Foods, dahlstickets.com or 866.553.2457.

sWisHes FoR WisHes

Basketball tourney to benefit Make-a-Wish

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3-on-3 basketball tournament on the University of Northern Iowa campus will raise money for children with life-threatening illnesses through the Iowa Make-A-Wish Foundation. The Swishes for Wishes tournament is from noon to 6 p.m. Saturday, April 2, in the upper gyms of the UNI Wellness and Recreation Center, Cedar Falls. The event will include a silent auction of UNI athletic memorabilia. Cedar Valley celebrities, UNI athletes and UNI’s mascot, TC, will make appearances at the event.

The 3-on-3 brackets will be categorized according to grade level: third to fifth grade, sixth to eighth grade, high school and college students on. A cash prize will be awarded to the winners of the oldest division, while medals will be given in other age categories. The fee for each team is $60, with a minimum of three players and maximum of four. Registration includes a tournament T-shirt, double elimination 3-on-3 action and the opportunity to join the 3-point contest. Sponsored by:

www.swishesforwishes.eventbrite.com

MIDWEST INSTITUTE OF ADVANCED LAPAROSCOPIC SURGERY

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Upcoming shows at 18 MAR 19 MAR

9:00PM: FREE KEG & KARAOKE

24 MAR

7:00PM: NATIONAL BLUES/ROCK: HAMILTON LOOMIS

25 MAR 26 MAR 27 MAR

GABE’SGUYS

9:00PM: BON JOVI/POISON/MOTLEY CRUE TRIBUTE BY MONSTERS OF MOCK 8:00PM: FOOS GOLD AND THE MITTENS

22 MAR

25 MAR

MARCH 25

6:00PM: CHECKER & THE BLUETONES 9:30PM: LICK IT TICKET W/ THE WORKSHY 8:00PM: THE SEQUELS W/ FOURTH FLOOR ORANGE 9:00PM: LIVE JAZZ MUSIC BY: HERCULANIUM 9:00PM: FREE KEG & KARAOKE

30 MAR

9:00PM: UNI JAZZ COMBOS

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29 MAR

friday, march 25 | 7 pm

Expires 04/11/11

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acklemore with Ryan Lewis and Blueprint will perform at 7 p.m. Friday, March 25, at Gabe’s in Iowa City. A native emcee of Seattle, Macklemore is noted for his ability to rock the crowd, however big or small. His use of clever language in his lyrics puts a fresh spin on universal experiences, mak-

ing him more relatable to his audience. Blueprint is notorious for his endeavor to blur the genre lines of music in his upcoming album, “Adventures in Counter-Culture.” By bringing together differing aspects of music into one congruous album, he hopes to reset the standard of creativity.

gaBE’S 330 E. Washington St., Iowa City Tickets: $10 at livewknd.com or RAYGUN, 103 E. College St., Iowa City

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pulse. your voice for arts, culture, movies, music and more.

april 22

Mason Jennings to play in Davenport FOR TICKET

www.barmuda.cS GO TO om/jokers

friday, april 22 | 8:30 pm

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nown for his thoughtful lyrics and sincere voice, Mason Jennings, a king of folk from Minnesota, will perform in the Redstone Room at 8:30 p.m. Friday, April 22. Singer/songwriter Jennings blends the insight of a poet, the political broadside of a protest singer and the eclecticism of a jazz musician with a rock ’n’ roller’s passion. He’s one of the most talked about new artists on the acoustic music scene. The former indie artist has grown in popularity since he joined friend Jack Johnson’s label, with his 2008 album “In the Ever” debuting at No. 4 on the Billboard’s Top Heatseekers chart. With eight albums under his belt, Jennings’ continued roadwork has added to the enthusiasm of his fans.

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REDSTONE ROOM 129 Main St., Davenport Tickets: $25-$28 at midwestix.com or the River Music Experience box office

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REVIEW Dan DELUCa | PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER

LYKKE LI Wounded Rhymes /

Swedish songstress Lykke Li toughens up her 21stcentury girl-group sound on “Wounded Rhymes,” an aggressively emotional 10-song set likely to make her one of the breakout stars of 2011. The boldface example of the change from her 2008 debut, “Youth Novels,” is the difference between “Little Bit,” that album’s coy, playful indie hit, and “Wounded’s” tribal “Get Some,” in which she promises, “I’m your prostitute, you gonna get some.” (By prostitute, she means the kind of empowered “prostitute of the mind” found in Haruki Murakami’s novel “The Wind Up Bird Chronicle,” but

I’m guessing that’ll be lost on the dudes drooling over the pictures of a leathered-up Li in this month’s Spin.) There are, however, also plenty of delicate, beautifully bummed-out moments on “Wounded Rhymes,” which was produced by Bjorn Yttling (of Peter, Bjorn and John), such as the to-the-point “Sadness is a Blessing” and “Unrequited Love,” and the closing “Silent My Song.” All further the impression that Lykke Li is a goth, globalized iteration of Nancy Sinatra and the Shangri-Las for our time.

stEVE kLIngE | PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER

MEMPHIS Here Comes a City

Memphis is the intermittent collaboration between Torquil Campbell and Chris Dumont. Campbell sings in Stars, one of the numerous Canadian bands that share lineage with the mighty Broken Social Scene, and it’s tempting to dismiss Memphis as a side project. But while “Here Comes a City” shares a lush, easygoing melodic sensibility with both BSS and Stars, it’s such an appealing, effortless sound, dense with layers of chiming guitars and reassuringly placid vocals, that

another variation on the theme is still welcome. The music jangles and shimmers — the Smiths and the Go-Betweens are other reference points, the latter providing the album’s title — but songs such as “Apocalypse Pop Song” are often barbed and bitter (sometimes distractingly so, as with the vicious putdowns of “Wait!”). “Here Comes a City” won’t necessarily surprise, but it’s a pleasing addition to the indie social scene.

/ a.D. amoRosI | PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER

MARSHA AMBROSIUS Late Nights, Early Mornings /

Marsha Ambrosius was the Brit-born half of the duo Floetry, the one with the silken voice, the one who bolstered her renown as a songwriter by penning “Butterflies” for Michael Jackson and hits for Alicia Keys, Justin Timberlake and Jamie Foxx. Ambrosius knows her way around a melody. For “Late Nights, Early Mornings,” her debut solo CD, Ambrosius shows more frank sass than she did in Floetry, along with a sense of poignancy and topical urgency. The sass comes through in tunes such as “Hope She

Cheats on You (With a Basketball Player),” in which themes of bruised ego and cheery vengeance ultimately become a twittering anthem with a killer hook. The casually catty “Sour Times” and the gently caustic “The Break Up Song” carry similar aggressive vibes and soulful sonic weight. But then you trip across the lengthy “Far Away” — an epic R&B cut improbably comparable to some of Marvin Gaye’s finest. Ambrosius takes on gay-bashing and youth-bullying without sounding too preachy. Solid.

EmILy taRtanELLa | PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER

BEADY EYE Different Gear, Still Speeding /

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Not since Cain and Abel have fraternal squabbles produced so many headlines. Now that Noel Gallagher has officially bowed out of Oasis with typical grace (“I simply could not go on working with Liam a day longer”), it’s up to the boys he left behind (including brother Liam) to carry on the family name. Or rather, to rename themselves Beady Eye and produce “Different Gear, Still Speeding,” a satisfying (if forgettable) pop collection. Musically, Beady Eye takes its primary cues from the Gallagher brothers themselves, showcasing the classic riffs and massive vocals of “Definitely Maybe”-era Oasis.

As such, Beady Eye delivers an intensity missing from the boys’ more recent efforts. But that might say more about the sad decline of Oasis than the triumphant ascendancy of Beady Eye, about which there’s not too much to say. Sure, there’s the catchy single “The Roller” and the Elton John-style attitudes of “Bring the Light.” But there’s also the drudgery of “Millionaire” and the monotonous ballad “Kill for a Dream.” It’s up to Liam’s genuine sincerity, and predictably perfect vocals, to make “Different Gear, Still Speeding,” a propulsive if unmemorable post-Oasis exercise. Your move, Noel.


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AT CVPULSE.COM

CALIFORNIA GUITAR TRIO HEADED TO THE MILL

Three’s Company

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he California Guitar Trio — Paul Richards, Bert Lams and Hideyo Moriya — is marking its 20th anniversary with the release of “Andromeda,” available as a CD or on vinyl. The trio first met in England in 1987 while studying with iconic King Crimson guitarist Robert Fripp. After touring together as part of Fripp’s League of Crafty Guitarists, they convened in Los Angeles and founded the California Guitar Trio in 1991. “‘Andromeda’ represents a culmination of all our work together in the past 20 years,” said Lams. “We have released numerous CDs over the years, but there’s none like this one. ‘Andromeda’ is the first album containing nothing but original material, combined with improvised pieces. The integration of structured, thought-out pieces with the loose and spontaneous improvisations is something we’ve never done before.” “When we started the band in 1991, it was only a California project, and no one knew how long it would last,” said Moriya. “Yet something good always

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happened to keep us going when times were tough. It is great to reach 20 years with ‘Andromeda,’ and we have good energy to keep going.” The CGT plays a unique style, with guitars weaving an intricate knotwork of interlocking parts to form a whole. CGT’s music was played to wake the astronauts aboard the NASA space shuttle Endeavor. “This new album captures a balance between the pure acoustic sound and the processed electrified sound of the CGT, something we’ve experimented with before, but not to this degree,” said Lams. SEE THEM LIVE AT THE MILL

SATURDAY, MARCH 26 | 8 PM 120 E. Burlington St., Iowa City Contact: 319.351.9529 | icmill.com

CLARKE UNIVERSITY MACKIN-MAILANDER LECTURE SERIES PRESENTS

ACCLAIMED

JOURNALIST:

LISA LING Lisa Ling will present “Open Heart, Open Mind,” discussing her own career path, how journalism plays an important role in the world around us and how, as times continue to change, it can be a force for propelling the world forward in new and positive ways.

Sunday, March 27, 2011 Robert and Ruth Kehl Center, Clarke University Campus 7 p.m.

205 East 18th Street • Cedar Falls • 319-277-3671 Hours: 11 a.m. – 2 a.m. • 7 days a week!

www.mulligansbrickoven.com

WO-031811018

$15/adults, $10/students Purchase tickets beginning Tuesday, March 1, by calling (563)584-8642 or on-line at www.clarke.edu/mackin-mailander.

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march 25       friday Waterloo Broken Road 7 and 9 p.m., The Isle Ballroom Chrome Union 8 p.m., The Isle Fling Lounge Dakota 4 p.m., Masonic Event Center Easy Street 9 p.m., Jameson’s Hells Bells 6 p.m., Pepsi Pavilion Party!Party! 9 p.m., Spicoli’s

your favorite bands in your favorite venues waterloo cedar falls iowa city cedar rapids dubuque

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STAY UP TO DATE WITH PULSE MAGAZINE

Cedar Falls Checker and the Bluetones 6 p.m., The Hub Lick It Ticket with The Workshy 9:30 p.m., The Hub Miles Nielsen and the Rusted Hearts with The Mittens 9 p.m., Wheelhouse UNI Singers and Women’s Chorus 7:30 p.m., Gallagher-Bluedorn Dubuque Big Eagle Band 9 p.m., Jumpers Full Code Band 8 p.m., Mystique Massey Road 9 p.m., Northside Mississippi Band 9 p.m., Murph’s Rosalie Morgan 7 p.m., Taiko Sunshine 8 p.m., Dubuque Driving Range Cedar Rapids 8 Seconds 9 p.m., Chrome Horse Saloon Brian Griffin and Jeff Baldori 9:30 p.m., Piano Lounge Human Aftertaste with Snow Demon 10 p.m., Blue Moose John Shultz Organization 7 p.m., Java Creek Music as a Weapon Tour V featuring Disturbed and Korn 6:30 p.m., U.S. Cellular Center

www.cvpulse.com

Iowa City Amarillo Band 9 p.m., Wildwood Calmus 7:30 p.m., West High Dead Larry 9 p.m., Iowa City Yacht Club Final Alibi with Weekend FM, Less Than Yesterday and Tasty Trigger 5 p.m., Blue Moose Jazz After Five featuring Equilateral 5:30 p.m., The Mill Joe and Vicki Price 8:30 p.m., The Mill Macklemore with Ryan Lewis, Blueprint and Idris Goodwin 8 p.m., Gabe’s

26      SaturDAY Waterloo Chrome Union 8 p.m., The Isle Fling Lounge Dakota 4 p.m., Masonic Event Center Elev8 9 p.m., Jameson’s Scarlett Runner 9 p.m., Screaming Eagle Soul Fusion with Silva Rena 9 p.m., Spicoli’s Cedar Falls Dakota 9 p.m., Mr. G’s Josh Gracin with Greenbrier 8 p.m., Wheelhouse The Sequels 8 p.m., The Hub Dubuque Betty and the Headlights 9 p.m., Northside Crude But Effective 9 p.m., Pit Stop Hard Salami 9 p.m., Denny’s Lux Club Johnny Trash 9 p.m., Hammerhead’s Six Shots to Midnight 9 p.m., Jumpers Sunshine 8 p.m., Mystique Tantrym 9 p.m., Knicker’s Cedar Rapids Brian Griffin and Jeff Baldori 9:30 p.m., Piano Lounge

Super Size Seven 9 p.m. Chrome Horse Saloon Terry McCauley 7 p.m., Java Creek Iowa City 8 Seconds Band 9 p.m., Wildwood California Guitar Trio 8 p.m., The Mill Dream Thieves 8 p.m., Gabe’s

April 1       friday Waterloo The Diz Diz 9 p.m., Jameson’s The Snozzberries 9 p.m., Spicoli’s Cedar Falls Bob Dorr and the Blue Band 6 p.m., The Hub Cedar Valley F.O.O.L.S. fundraiser featuring Elev8 9 p.m., The Hub Dubuque Half-Fast 8 p.m., The Yardarm Jill Duggan 7 p.m., Stone Cliff PashNBrew 9 p.m., Northside Tony Walker and Shock Johnson 8 p.m., Spirits Cedar Rapids Black the Sun 9 p.m., Chrome Horse Saloon Lem Genovese 7 p.m., Java Creek Iowa City Lick It Ticket with The Workshy 8 p.m., Gabe’s Mission Creek Music Festival featuring Here We Go Magic, Dark Dark Dark, Pillars and Tongues and Skye Carrasco 9 p.m., The Mill Mission Creek Music Festival featuring High and Lonesome and Shame Train 9:30 p.m., Iowa City Yacht Club Mission Creek Music Festival featuring John Waters 7 p.m., Englert Theatre


Mission Creek Music Festival featuring Smokestack and the Foothill Fury, The Olympics, Brass Bed and The Wheelers 9 p.m., Public Space One Mission Creek Music Festival featuring Poison Control Center, Birth Rites, Land of Blood and Sunshine and Mumfords 9 p.m., Blue Moose

pulse pick

TICKET GIVEAWAY REGISTER TO WIN AT: WWW.CVPULSE.COM

Los Lonely Boys The Englert Theatre Iowa City Sunday, April 10 8 p.m.

2        SaturDAY 4 PAIRS OF TICKETS TO WIN!

Waterloo LOC, 9 p.m., Jameson’s Cedar Falls Abandon Kansas with Mike Mains and the Branches and Grinning Match 6 p.m., The Hub Nappy Roots with Anamul House, Laws and Ill Convoy 7 p.m., Wheelhouse Pork Tornadoes 10 p.m., The Hub Dubuque Bryan Popp and Corey Jenny 8 p.m., Spirits Half-Fast 9 p.m., Diamond Jo John Moran 7 p.m., Stone Cliff Tantrym 8 p.m., Diamond Jo Cedar Rapids Funk Daddies 9 p.m., Chrome Horse Saloon Jasmine, 7 p.m., Java Creek Iowa City Ana Sia with Avant Garde 9 p.m., Gabe’s Chris Brooks Band 9 p.m., Wildwood Mission Creek Music Festival featuring Dennis McMurrin and the Demolition Band and The Ragbirds 9:30 p.m., Iowa City Yacht Club Mission Creek Music Festival featuring Devotchka 8 p.m., First Methodist Mission Creek Music Festival featuring Guided by Voices 7 p.m., Blue Moose Mission Creek Music Festival featuring Meth and Goats, Mayor Daley and CaCaw 10:30 p.m., White Lightning Wherehouse

De Deadline to Enter: Monday, April 4

Come as You Art: Featuring Milk & Honey Waterloo Center for the Arts Waterloo

Party! Party!

Friday, April 1 7 - 11 p.m. Deadline to Enter: Friday, March 25

2 PAIRS OF TICKETS TO WIN!

Hunks Mystique Casino Dubuque

Live Karaoke Band

Friday, April 15 Saturday, April 16 8 p.m.

WHO: Nicholas Borror, Joshua Ickowitz and Joe Kiplinger. WHERE: Spicoli’s in Waterloo. WHEN: 9 p.m. March 25.

5 PAIRS OF TICKETS TO WIN!

Deadline to Enter: Friday, April 8

Q&A with NICHOLAS BORROR

Q. How would you classify/describe your band? A. The best karaoke experience you will ever have. We play music of all styles from all eras. Q. How did you come up with the idea? A. I was looking at the live music listings in our hometown of Des Moines, and noticed that the karaoke listings were just as long as the live music listings, but none of the karaoke listings were live bands, and it just clicked that there was an untapped market for this type of experience. Q. If you could open for any band, who would it be? A. Journey, so we could play all their songs before they do.

Winners will be selected the day following the deadline to enter and contacted by e-mail and phone. No purchase necessary to play. Must be 18 years or older to participate.

Grand Tasting g tickets online

Wineloversweekend.com WO-031811027

READ.WATCH.SURF

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SUCKER PUNCH 25   MARCH

film

2011

get your flick on

STARRING: Emily Browning, Vanessa Hudgens, Abbie Cornish THE PLOT: A young girl is institutionalized by her wicked stepfather. Retreating to an alternative reality as a coping strategy, she envisions a plan that will help her escape from the facility.

THE BEAVER 25   MARCH STARRING: Mel Gibson, Jodie Foster, Anton Yelchin THE PLOT: Plagued by his own demons, Walter Black was once a successful toy executive and family man who now suffers from depression. No matter what he tries, Walter can’t seem to get himself back on track until a beaver hand puppet enters his life.

HOP 1   APRIL STARRING: Russell Brand, James Marsden, Elizabeth Perkins THE PLOT: Blending state-of-the-art animation with live action, “Hop” tells the comic tale of Fred, an outof-work slacker who accidentally injures the Easter Bunny and must take him in as he recovers. As Fred struggles with the world’s worst house guest, both will learn what it takes to finally grow up.

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Images courtesy of: Warner Brothers, Summit Entertainment and Universal Pictures

SOURCE CODE 1   APRIL STARRING: Jake Gyllenhaal, Michelle Monaghan, Vera Farmiga THE PLOT: When a decorated soldier (Gyllenhaal) wakes up in the body of an unknown man, he discovers he’s part of a mission to find the bomber of a Chicago commuter train. In an assignment unlike any he’s ever known, he learns he’s part of a government experiment called the “Source Code,” a program that enables him to cross over into another man’s identity in the last eight minutes of his life. With a second, much larger target threatening to kill millions in downtown Chicago, he lives the incident over and over again, gathering clues each time until he can solve the mystery of who is behind the bombs and prevent the next attack.

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shutterstock photo

Taking breaks is GOOD for you

2009 World Champion

BE

HEARD! WANT TO SEE YOUR MUSIC LISTED? E-mail us at pulse@wcfcourier.com. Submissions must be received 10 days prior to publication date.

WO-031811092

McCLATCHY NEWS SERVICE

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University of Illinois professor says people don’t need to feel guilty about checking personal e-mail, chatting with co-workers or addressing other minor distractions throughout the work day. Brief diversions may actually help people concentrate and improve their performance on more important tasks, says Alejandro Lleras, who wrote a study on the topic for the journal Cognition. Lleras works at the university’s Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology in Urbana, Ill. Lleras’ research seems to contradict long-standing theories that attention is a finite resource that runs out after a lengthy period of focus. Attention is more like a gas tank that refills during short breaks from the task at hand, according to Lleras’ study. A loss of attention is not the problem. “When you are distracted, it doesn’t mean you aren’t paying attention to anything,” Lleras said. Lleras based his theory on the idea that our senses become used to stimulus. Take a room that smells strongly of coffee. If you stay in the room all day, the scent goes away because the brain is trained to respond to differences and not constants in the environment. The same can be true of the thought process. Sustained attention to a thought can cause that thought to disappear. But if you are given something else to think about, the original thought will seem fresh when you return to it. “It’s unrealistic to expect people to focus at high levels for a long period of time,” Lleras said. “It’s important to create an environment where it’s OK to take small breaks.”

How high doth the written word reach? David Morice, an Iowa City resident and a teacher at Kirkwood Community College, was best known for a series of “Poetry Comics” until he decided last year to write 100page poems every day for 100 days, until he had a book totaling 10,000 pages (actually, 10,119). The University of Iowa Libraries has published the finished poem, online and in a 2-foot-high hardcopy stack. courtesy photo WO-031811051

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Funny women finally get their piece of the pie McCLATCHY NEWS SERVICE

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ennifer Aniston recently revealed that she turned down an offer to join the cast of “Saturday Night Live” in the mid-’90s because she considered the show to be a “boys’ club.” Today, the club has a new policy. Kristen Wiig is as valuable to “SNL” as Eddie Murphy was in the early ’80s, proving week after week that women can be as outrageous, goofy, creative and unpredictable as the men. She’s not the only one. Consider Jane Lynch’s version of Idi Amin in track pants on “Glee” or Toni Collette’s arsenal of whacked-out personas on “The United States of Tara.” Admire Kaley Cuoco’s perfect eye roll on “The Big Bang Theory” or Tina Fey’s klutziness on “30 Rock.” Shudder at Betty White’s spunk in “Hot in Cleveland” or question Cloris Leachman’s sanity in “Raising Hope.” Gawk at Sofia Vergara’s beautiful destruction of the English language in “Modern Family” or Laura Linney’s mastery of it on “The Big C.” Toast Courteney Cox’s wine-guzzling antics on “Cougar Town” — and while you’re up, raise a glass to Mary-Louise Parker, Lea Michele, Patricia Heaton and Amy Poehler, all undeniable evidence that TV has never been more welcoming to funny women. “We’re lucky enough to be on shows where it’s not just about the man’s journey and the woman is standing there shaking her finger or waiting for him to come back from his fart fest with the guys,” said Julie Bowen of “Modern Family,” where the punch lines are split down the middle between the two sexes. “These women have their own little story lines and their own little adventures, and sometimes

you’re in the front of the pack and sometimes you’re not, but it’s a huge change from the old standard Jackie Gleason format,” Bowen said. For the most part, women spent the first 40 years of the television era playing the “straight guys.” And then Roseanne Barr rumbled onto the screen. It wasn’t just her dry-ice delivery that made Roseanne a groundbreaker. It also had to do with the fact that she ran her own show — sometimes with an iron fist, but it was her vision — a rarity before “Roseanne” premiered in 1988. It’s not so rare anymore. It’s not a coincidence that “30 Rock,” ‘‘Tara,” ‘‘Weeds,” ‘‘The Big C,” ‘‘Cleveland” and “The Middle” were all created by women. Almost every episode of “How I Met Your Mother,” another excellent example of equalopportunity hijinks, is directed by Pamela Fryman, and at least seven of the show’s 17 writers are female. Roseanne’s reign also paved the way for such actresses as Emmy winner Lynch, no slouch in the looks department, but not the standard eye candy, either. TV’s willingness to cast funny females who don’t look as if they just walked off the Victoria’s Secret runway explains why “Hot in Cleveland” is one of cable’s hottest shows. That’s encouraging news for younger women who are enjoying this golden age of female-driven comedy — and want to keep on enjoying it for decades to come. “I want to get old in this business, and I mean real old, like saggy and things drooping down to my socks,” Bowen said. “I want people to like something about me other than my bangability.”

photo courtesy nbc

TINA FEY, “30 ROCK”

photo courtesy CBS

KALEY CUOCO, “THE BIG BANG THEORY”

photo courtesy fox

JANE LYNCH, “GLEE”

‘The Last Supper’ gets toasted and dried Ripley’s Believe It or Not! museum in Hollywood is already home to an artist’s rendition of da Vinci’s “The Last Supper” made from burned toast, and now comes a recent version by Laura Bell of Roscommon, Mich. — da Vinci’s master-

piece made with clothes-dryer lint. Bell said she did about 800 hours of laundry of various-colored towels to obtain lint of the proper hues and then worked 200 more hours to construct the 14-footlong, 4-foot-high mural. photo courtesy ripley’s believe it or not!

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NEW RELEASES video gameS

2011

HEAD To cVpulse. coM For viDEoS oF THiS AND oTHEr GAMES. MArch 29

For: xbox 360, Wii, PLAYSTATioN 3

tiger woodS pga tour 2012: the maSterS The latest edition of the “Tiger Woods” golf franchise tackles new territory — this is the first game in the series that includes Augusta National, the site of the Masters, as a playable course. Your career begins on the amateur tour and

you must work your way through Q School and the Nationwide Tour before finally hitting the links on the PGA Tour. Caddies can advise you about the lie, the yardage and the wind to inform and improve your shots — and they even level up and

Super meat boy ultra edition Avoid saws, lasers and other deadly traps as Meat boy, the skinless wonder, out to save his girlfriend (made of bandages) from the evil Dr. Fetus. This simple yet ridiculously challenging platformer has more than April 5 300 levels of beefy goodness. For: PC The ultra edition comes with a 40-page manual that’s half comic book, half development sketchbook, as well as the soundtrack, sound effects, character art and a mini poster.

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become more adept with experience on the course. Sportscasters Jim Nantz and David Feherty provide color commentary during the game, and there’s always a round or two of mini-golf waiting to be played for a change of pace.


‘dragon age ii’ takes advantage of bleakness in new urban setting

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reVieW By lou KesTeN | THE ASSoCiATED PrESS

f you think U.S. politics have gotten ugly, wait until you’ve spent some time in the city of Kirkwall. The Templars want to subjugate the mages. The priests of the Chantry don’t trust the brutish Qunari. The Dalish elves want to avoid humans altogether. Take this stew of suspicion and corruption and stir in hundreds of desperate Fereldan refugees, on the run from the demonic Darkspawn that have overrun their homeland. Even without the dragons, ogres and giant spiders lurking in the wilderness, Kirkwall isn’t exactly the Emerald City. It is the setting for “Dragon Age II,” the latest role-playing adventure from the masters at BioWare. And it’s radically different from the bucolic landscapes associated with epic fantasy since “The Lord of the Rings.” Some RPG fans will find Kirkwall claustrophobic, but you can sense mysterious, often nefarious doings behind every door — a feeling any urban dweller will recognize. The protagonist — also referred to as “the Champion” — is Hawke, and you can play as ei-

ther a man or a woman. (Since I chose female, I’ll refer to Hawke as “her.”) You can start as a warrior, a mage or a rogue, and as you gain experience, you can evolve into a berserker, a healer, an assassin or one of six other job classes. Hawke’s initial goals are to find a new home for her mother and to protect her sister, a mage, from the Templars. As Hawke’s power and influence grow, she attracts an entourage of lively characters, with their own problems and ambitions. Anders (who returns from last year’s “Awakening”) is a mage who’s struggling to control the vengeance demon inside his head. Isabela is a saucy pirate who yearns to return to the high seas. Merrill is a wistful elf who’s alienated from her clan. There are about 800 more stories in this naked city, and almost all of them are intriguing. Most of the story is told through dialogue, and the way Hawke responds to friends, rivals and other Kirkwall denizens influences the course of the game. You usually have three ways to respond — polite, sarcastic or stern — but the choices don’t always break down

dragon age ii For: PC, xbox 360, PlayStation 3 | price: $59.99 | rated: Mature

that simply. And you cannot approach every conversation the same way; Isabela may enjoy your sense of humor, but that doesn’t make it appropriate at a funeral. Of course, there are thousands of enemies, human and otherwise, to battle, and BioWare has tweaked combat to make it feel smoother and more immediate. You control one fighter while the computer controls your three companions, but you can switch between bod-

ies at any time. Get your mages, rogues and warriors synched and you can really dole out the damage. “Dragon Age II” is somewhat of a creative gamble for BioWare; shifting the typically sprawling role-playing genre into a relatively confined urban milieu is bound to leave some fans grumbling. But while it’s grittier and less grandiose, it’s still an epic drama, and the journey is very rewarding.

darkspore

lego battles ninjago

As Estelle and Joshua attempt to become bracers, unallied keepers of the peace, they must unravel a plot to overthrow the queen of Liberl and plunge their lands into war. This rPG is also available in a limited edition with soundtrack, poster and metal badge. psp; March 29.

based on the creature editing technology of the “Spore” series, “Darkspore” players create a team of genetically modified heroes to finish a 1,000-year fight against a terrorizing alien swarm. risky missions and battles pay off with better rewards and upgrades. pc; March 29.

The ninjas of Spinjitzu face off against the evil Skulkin forces in the latest addition to the popular LEGo game franchise. Heroes from other toy lines are available as hidden characters to be unlocked in the game for single player or multiplayer modes. Ds; March 31.

rabbids travel in time

tom Clancy’s ghost recon Future Soldier

the 3rd birthday

The crazy rabbids attempt to take over the world by altering the course of human history — using their time-traveling washing machine, of course. This 3-D platformer takes the rabbids to locations like Egypt and rome with more than 30 wacky costumes for them to wear. 3Ds; April 10.

Join the fight against ultranationalist groups in a series of covert missions throughout Europe in this first-person shooter. Hightech weaponry and equipment in the game are based off actual military prototypes developed under the Future Soldier 2030 initiative. pc, ps3, X360; March 31.

The heroine of the “Parasite Eve” series, Aya brea, must take on an enemy known only as the Twisted. Using overdrive, Aya can take control of any friendly unit nearby and use them to destroy the Twisted from the inside to save Manhattan. psp; March 29.

ELECTroNiC ArTS, TEAM MEAT PHoToS

legend of heroes: trail in the Sky

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Safe is relative in author’s brilliantly painted ‘Room’ amie steffen | Pulse writer

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o Jack, a precocious but brilliant 5-year-old, nightmares are backward. After all, if all you know is hell, then heaven’s going to seem like a scary place. In “Room,” author Emma Donoghue paints a very scary place. After escaping the locked storage shed he and his mother had been prisoners in for his entire life (and two extra years of hers), Jack — a product of his mother’s repeated, almost nightly rapes by their captor, a man he has nicknamed “Old Nick” — is confused, frightened and angered by social interactions the rest of us take for granted. Wind feels like it’s going to rip him in two; rain hurts his skin; a reassuring touch from a stranger is unbearable. All Jack wants is to go back to his comfortable Room, a place his mother tried to make normal, WHAT’S THE word? safe, happy and productive for her son. “I’ve seen the world and I’m tired now,” Jack says to his mother after they are reunited in a police car, once she helps him escape. Why on Earth would anyone want to go back there? Ma certainly doesn’t; she’s been living a nightmare and pretending for the sanity of her son. Readers don’t want to go back, either. The first section of the book is the longest — the tedium of Jack’s world is comforting to him, but it’s a hopelessly slow, dull pace for the rest of us. But once Ma decides she’s had enough and hatches an escape plan, everything changes. Ma is going back to a world that at least has a recognizable framework for her. For Jack, nothing outside of Room is recognizable. As he navigates his new world, discovering things like stairs, ice cream, the beach and lots of new toys that he doesn’t have to beg his Ma to ask Old Nick for, Jack is also having bad experiences. In a car, he has to remind himself that Emma Donoghue cars coming at the vehicle he is riding in will not hit him; outside, that grass Little, Brown and Company, 2010 will not cut his feet. Pages: 321 As a case study in child behavior, Donoghue’s Jack shows us the world like / we haven’t seen it since we were very young.

books

2011

Room

Memoir of finding love tells popular blogger’s story JESSICA VANDE ZANDSCHULP | Pulse staff writer

R

ee Drummond is your average housewife. Well, average in that she writes a blog read by millions, published a best-selling cookbook and lives out in the middle of nowhere on a ranch with her hunk of a husband and four children. Her newest book, “The Pioneer Woman: Black Heels to Tractor Wheels — A Love Story,” is as personable and entertaining as her blog (thepioneerwoman.com). The quirky humor loved by her adoring fans brings an amazing book to life. Drummond has found a way to link everyday events, mortifying and not, into a flowing love story. We feel her excitement, her misery and every emotion in between. She thinks she has it together when she moves back home to make a new life for herself after years in California. And she keeps trying to tell herself that, especially after she meets someone she calls “Marlboro Man.” They meet around Christmas at a local bar, and he calls four months later. It’s a true tale of how she met and married her husband. Ree Drummond While Drummond is falling in love, there are multiple mishaps: A for- William Morrow, 2011 mer boyfriend comes calling, the family dog is run over on the way to a date Pages: 352 with Marlboro Man, multiple trips and tumbles and an issue with sweat / that plagues her upon meeting new boyfriend’s extended family for the first time. She’s also hit hard by her parents’ divorce, watching their marriage unravel as she plans her own. As her father walks her down the aisle, it’s a bittersweet moment — her married life is beginning as his comes to a close. “Black Heels to Tractor Wheels” is a story about finding love in an unlikely place. There are no earthshattering secrets, but there is a peace and excitement that comes with a new relationship and a new love.

Black Heels to Tractor Wheels

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