READ ANYTIME - READ NOW Prague’s city magazine
Made You Look So, welcome to the (Chinese) year of that unjustly maligned denizen of laboratories, treadmills, and sewers—the rat. Rats are truly given the short shrift of things in the west—it’s the name given to you if you ‘squeal’ on your partners in crime or betray a cause, they’re considered dirty, are frequently still blamed for the spread of bubonic plague (the ﬂeas and the squalid conditions were the actual culprits) and are subjected to all kinds of nasty experiments in the name of a science they never get any beneﬁt from. What a deal. Fortunately, the Chinese see the rat-people (those born in a rat-year) as leaders, organized, intelligent and cunning, but likely to face a crisis of suﬀering at some time. Much like 2008, March should be a very interesting month, with festivals including the Sperm Festival and the One World Film Festival; gigs like the Radioclash Tradeshow,
Plastique, Caribou, Dead Kids, Black Lips, Whitest Boy Alive, etc.; and, of course, the Saint Patrick’s Day and Easter Celebrations to liven things up. You’ll ﬁnd more about every one of the above events in this very magazine. You’ll also ﬁnd us taking a look at things such as the new Starbucks, the Tranzitdisplay Gallery, Diesel’s latest collection and more. There are the usual critiques of ﬁlms (this will be an excellent month to hit the cinemas by the way) and a number of Woody Allen ﬁlms available on video. You’ll also have a chance to meet and learn about the very interesting Seattle-based designer and illustrator Shawn Wolfe and ﬁnd out why he should be on your list of people to pay attention to.
Have a great Easter/Spring celebration and see you next month!
Prague is not merely cheesy tourist shops selling overpriced crystal to brain-dead tourists. A whole world dedicated to alternative shopping is bustling beneath the kitschy city center shopping universe. The Radioclash tradeshow aims to bring together the proprietors of underground records shops, out-of-left-ﬁeld fashion stores, and bizarre bookstores for a day out in Žižkov’s prime subterranean hotspot Parukářka. So if you’re looking for that perfect 60s cocktail dress your mama never gave you or that rare 12” that you’ve wanted for ages, go no further. And after you’ve shelled out some pocket money, seek out the ﬁne beats and grooves that will be part of the aﬀair.
3/3 American Citizens Schengen Forum Municipal Library prague.usembassy.gov
One World Film Festival The 10th One World International Human Rights Documentary Film Festival will grace Prague’s relatively peaceful and humane venues from March 5th – 13th. The 138 ﬁlms from 40 countries will pry open the frequently forgotten realms of poverty, dictatorship, oppression, injustice, torture, and the like. There is no doubt that much of the content will be disturbing and unlikely to have you singing a merry song to yourself as you leave, but mayhap viewers will remember that if we don’t do something sometime about the unbelievable mass of suﬀering out there, it’s only going to grow heavier. A variety of themes will be explored in this year’s festival, including the promising category ‘Putin’s Russia’. A screening of Lisa Jackson’s Sundance Film Special Jury Prize winning documentary The Greatest Silence: Rape in the Congo will get things started at Lucerna and Světozor.
5–13/3 One World Film Festival www.oneworld.cz
11th Annual Irish Music festival Possibly the best known, or at least best liked, of saints would be a fellow named Patrick who was lucky enough to have the Irish decide that he would be the patron saint of the Irish National Day. Here in Prague, the celebration of St. Patrick’s Day and Irish music known as the 11th Annual Irish Music Festival will begin March 14th at Caﬀrey’s Irish Bar. Musicians from Ireland including Station 65, Dave Morrissey, and Jodavino will be joined by Czech artists such as Coisceim, Dun an Doras, et al. There will be an additional celebration of music and beer on March 19th at Plzeň Brewery that will include a tasting of Irish whiskeys. Finally there will be the 7th annual Czech Rep. Oyster Opening Championship on the 23rd. Miss it all and risk an attack by vengeful leprechauns! Happy St. Patrick’s Day!
ALFREDVEDVOŘE theatre Františka Křížka 36, P7 www.alfredvedvore.cz
HANDA GOTE research & development During the month of March ALFREDVEDVOŘE theatre will present three no language barrier performances by HANDA GOTE research & development. Handa Gote is a project concerned with the research and development of movement theatre, design theatre, music, and sound design and the integration of science and technology in art. Each member of Handa Gote functions as technician, musician, actor, and performer at the same time. Red Green Blue performance explores the world of colors using minimalist movement and live music merged with interactive video. All nuanced by ambient chiaroscuro. Computer Music is a bizarre retro-future concert for the lovers of 8-bit computers and Extra-terrestrial music accompanied by projection. Silence is a no-technology trip to the edge of desolation; an attempt to meditate in motion. You will be listening by headphone to four separate performance soundtracks created by four diﬀerent alternative music makers. Enjoy.
29/3 Dead Kids (UK) + The Uniques (SK) Palác Akropolis www.recyclit.cz
Americans: Don’t Panic! You’ve no doubt heard about the Schengen rules. The new regulations appear to require foreigners to stay out of the EU three months for every three months in. What the vast majority of people, both in positions of authority and living here illegally, seem unaware of is a potential loophole: citizens from countries exempt from such obligations (according to an agreement from 2004) won’t necessarily have to wait 90 days to re-enter the EU. These countries include the USA, Canada, Australia, Japan, and several others. You now have to leave the EU instead of just the Czech Republic, but according to our sources, you can probably come right back (unlike the scores of Ukrainians, Serbians and other non-EU immigrants). You may also be able to get yourself a long-term visa without proof of employment if you can show that you have enough money for a longer period. Already, two Americans were arrested for staying longer than 30 days and deported. But word has it they mouthed oﬀ to the cops… plus they were part-Roma.
14–23/3 St. Patrick’s Day Caﬀrey’s Irish Bar www.irishmusicfestival.cz
Dead Kids They’re bad-ass, they’re punk with some actual musical skill thrown in for good measure, they’re even a little bit art-rock and dance music. Dead Kids mix a whole lot of sound with provocative lyrics and energy like they’re Energizer Bunnies on crystal meth. A Dead Kids’ concert is deﬁnitely a must see for anyone interested in what’s on the post-punk fusion horizon, as they are one of the movers and shakers in this particular world and they’re not afraid to let the world know that their hard-core addictive sound is as good as it gets. Don’t miss it.
5/3 Radioclash Tradeshow Bunkr Parukářka www.myspace.com/radioclashtradeshow
6–8/3 La Fabrika, Abaton www.sperm.cz Text by Lucia Udvardyová
Joakim Bouaziz, or simply Joakim, has been immersed in the world of music ever since he started playing piano as a six year old. His eclectic journey continued in 1999, when he released his jazzinfused debut LP Joakim Lone Octet followed by a largely electronic dance album, Fantomes. With a live show with his Ectoplasmic Band on the way, we thought it might be a good moment to have a chat with the in-demand remixer, producer, and owner of the record label Tigersushi about smoky bars, Bach, and the best places to visit while in Paris. What was your ﬁrst encounter with music? It was in a tiny, smoky bar down my street. I was looking for some company on a full moon night a few years ago, maybe ﬁfteen or even twenty-ﬁve years ago. I met music there in the corner of the backroom, lying on a velvet sofa. She was completely drunk. And we instantly became friends forever.
To make it simple, this is approximately how it went: Classical -> cheesy rock -> 70s rock -> indie rock -> indie pop -> electronica -> jazz -> house & techno -> disco -> new and no wave -> experimental and contemporary. I usually avoid doing music that ﬁts a genre that I feel comfortable in because it is boring. I prefer trying things I don’t know.
You are classically trained in music. How has this inﬂuenced the way you listen to and produce music? Now I can’t stop hearing Bach patterns in Italo Disco arpeggios. Maybe that’s why I like Italo Disco which is a rather cheesy genre; it reminds me of Bach, whom I love. Because I was classically trained, I can play more than two notes at once with both hands at the same time. Although on stage I only have a monophonic keyboard, so I can’t show oﬀ my skills.
Your latest album Monsters & Silly Songs came out last year. What was your main inspiration and how do you see the period over which it was produced? Honestly I don’t know; inspiration came from everything: two years of a life, diﬀerent places, two studios, etc. It’s too complicated for me to analyze where it comes from exactly; you’d be better oﬀ asking my shrink, if I had one.
Your music production is very eclectic, ranging from hip-hop to jazz to electronics. Could you describe how your music evolved over the years? Which genre do you relate to most and why?
Why did you decide to put together a band? Because I was bored being on the road by myself all the time. You also run the Tigersushi label. What is the philosophy behind it? The philosophy of the label is that there
are no boundaries in music. Every style is connected to every other, every period is linked. If you’re only listening to drum’n’bass or indie rock, then you have a problem, and we’re here to help you. How do you see the future of independent music labels in an era of fundamental change in how music is produced, distributed, and consumed? Like beautiful ﬁreworks. Could you recommend any good spots to see and visit in Paris? If you came to Paris, I would recommend that you try some restaurants rather than clubs. Go to Chateaubriand, Le Barratin, Momoka, Le Perron or the Japanese restaurants at Rue Sainte-Anne, etc. What should people expect from you at your Sperm Festival show? They shouldn’t expect anything exactly like the record because we try to adapt songs for live performances. It’s much noisier, with some improvisation, so we can never tell how it’s gonna be, bad or good. You can dance to it sometimes, or listen to it if you prefer (but we like people who dance). It’s psychedelic heavy disco rock.
Joakim and his Ectoplasmic Band play the 2008 Sperm Festival alongside Modeselektor, Deadbeat, Frank Bretschneider, and others.
Text by Travis Jeppesen Photos courtesy of hunt kastner artworks
In December, the Czech Republic lost one of its most promising young artists to cancer. I ﬁrst came into contact with Jan Jakub Kotík when I was commissioned to write an essay on his work by Umělec. I did not know Jan well, but I quickly became a fan of his work, and was fortunate enough to spend a few hours in his presence. While I have never been a huge fan of conceptual art, and have long felt that it is needlessly overdone in this part of the world, Kotík’s work was imbued with a freshness and ﬁerceness that is frequently unsettling. Kotík wasn’t merely a brilliant conceptualist; he was also a highly skilled craftsman—a combination that has become increasingly rare in this age and milieu.
Origin of the Species, 2002
Jan’s work was not the only thing that made him an enigma in the Czech art scene. An American by birth, a New Yorker by training and default, Kotík was ultimately a Czech – and from one of the country’s most distinguished families at that (his greatgreat grandfather was Tomáš Garrigue Masaryk.) While the biographical details surrounding Kotík and his family are intriguing, it is for the extraordinary body of work left behind that Jan will ultimately be remembered. Kotík ﬁrst caught the attention of the artgoing public in 2000 with his solo exhibition, Economies of Scale, in which he exhibited tiny household appliances intricately constructed out of model airplane and tank parts. What seemed at ﬁrst like a joke was actually a startling commentary on the corporations that
produce mundane household objects—the same manufacturers responsible for the development and production, in collaboration with the U.S. government, of radar technology, guided missiles, spy ware, satellites, and various other militaristic technologies employed in the wars of the last century.
Kotík’s best-known work, however, is probably Hail to the Chief. The piece is comprised of a ﬂoor-to-ceiling stack of “Marshall” ampliﬁers that the artist actually built himself, with the American presidential emblem emblazoned on the center in gold. The speakers blare a modiﬁed sample of the guitar intro to Black Sabbath’s “Iron Man,” which is digitally manipulated to evoke the sound of air raid sirens and planes ﬂying overhead. Heavy metal and fascism converge in a singular synaesthetic invocation of the global political deity himself. The piece not only transmits an ironic political message through its loud appropriation of national imagery, but provokes a range of contradictory emotions that the viewer is forced to confront. From talking to Jan, I got the impression that he truly loved Prague. Like a lot of gifted young people living in this city, however, I think he also felt frustrated at times by the fact that artists here are only reluctantly given the attention they deserve—and seldom in doses that one needs to develop. Jan enjoyed being a part of the local art scene and loved to indulge in gossip about its protagonists, just like the rest of us. At the same time, having spent his formative years in New York, where he studied at the prestigious Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art, I think he also felt stiﬂed by the pettiness and provincialism that often shades foreigners’ impressions of the Czech art scene. Outside of the time I spent admiring his work, I’ll always
cherish the precious few memories I have of the time I spent with Jan. We bonded over our mutual love of heavy metal, and shortly after I ﬁnished writing my piece on his work, we celebrated by attending a Cannibal Corpse concert. We always promised to hang out more often, but as sometimes happens, our lives wound up taking diﬀerent paths. I stopped seeing him at art openings for a while and imagined that he had retreated into artistic seclusion. That was when I began hearing that he had become sick. The last time I saw Jan, however, he seemed happy and healthy, and casually referred to his illness in the past tense. We bumped into each other on the number 12 tram at Strossmayerovo Náměstí. It was a beautiful day in the sweltering summer of 2006, and as the tram eased along the side of the Vltava, the sun’s rays shimmering on the surface of the water, we talked eagerly about art and life. Things seemed to be going well for Jan. He was being represented by the newly established hunt kastner artworks, which was already being invited to display its artists’ work at respected international art fairs. His wife had just given birth to their ﬁrst child; a second would be born before he passed away on December 13th. We talked excitedly about my upcoming move to Berlin and eagerly agreed to meet up for a beer before I left town. But life does its thing, and for whatever reason, we were unable to fulﬁll our promise to each other. I stepped oﬀ at Švandovo Divadlo, and waved goodbye for
the last time. Death is unfair. It has robbed Jan Jakub Kotík’s wife of a loving husband, his two children of a father they will likely have no memories of, his parents of a son, and his brother of a sibling. But for most of us, the real tragedy of Kotík’s death at such a young age is the fact that his work never got the recognition it deserved in the course of his lifetime. Like Eva Hesse, Steven Parrino, Jason Rhoades, and so many other artists who were taken away from us while in their prime, it is now up to history to call the shot that is rightfully his.
IN MEMORIAM TECH 3
Jan Jakub Kotík ( 1972 2007)
Houses of the Holy, 2005
Hail to the Chief, 2003
SPECIAL TECH 3
Text by Sinclair Nicholas
Last February I welcomed you to the New Year, 4704, so it seems appropriate that this February I continue the tradition by welcoming you to the New Year, 4705, from the ancient Chinese calendar. This year also takes us back to the beginning of the twelve-year Chinese cycle, meaning we have gone from the Year of the Pig to the Year of the Rat. Had it been up to me, I don’t think I would have even considered a rat as a candidate for the zodiac—and certainly I would not have assigned it as the mascot to kick oﬀ the entire tradition. This made me wonder how and why the Chinese would have honored, several thousand years ago, the common rat with such an important position. I tried to ﬁnd that out, but came up with more than one Chinese legend about how this happened, so then I ended up having to deduce which one is the correct version. In the ﬁrst version, the Jade Emperor gave the rat the task of inviting all the animals to come to a banquet where they could request a zodiac sign. According to the legend, the cat and the rat were the best of friends back then, but the rat was afraid the cat would get picked ﬁrst, so the rat tricked the cat into believing that the banquet was on the day following the real day of the banquet. The cat showed up a day late to discover that its best friend was a rat who had somehow insinuated itself into the ﬁrst position of the zodiac. The cat vowed to be the rat’s natural enemy forevermore. Considering the psychological proﬁle of rats, and also how greatly cats dislike rats, this story does seem plausible—but the second version seems even more likely. According to the second version, all the animals heard—I suppose through the “grapevine”—that there was going to be this epic, once-in-a-lifetime zodiac lottery which would be awarded on a ﬁrst-come, ﬁrst-serve basis. This version is like a cross-country gumball rally—with some water thrown in. You see, at the end of the race there was a river, and the cat and the rat were the worst swimmers in the animal kingdom. They decided that the safest and
fastest way to cross the river was to catch a ride on the back of the ox. The ox was the strongest of swimmers and, being a naïve and good-natured animal, agreed to carry them across. However, about halfway across the river, that rat once again got to thinking like a fucking rat and suddenly kicked the cat’s ass oﬀ the ox’s back—and then the rat told the ox, “Look! The cat just jumped oﬀ your back to race you, swim harder!” According to this legend, the rat’s disgusting act of betrayal made the cat vow to be a mortal enemy to the rat, and because of nearly drowning, cats hate water to this day—which makes the legend seem doubly veriﬁed. And there is yet more evidence that this legend is the correct one. When the ox was about to reach the bank of the river, the rat ran and jumped oﬀ the ox’s head and reached the shore ﬁrst, thus claiming ﬁrst place in the competition, which explains exactly how a rat ended up in the ﬁrst position on the Chinese zodiac. Additionally, the egregious insult of launching oﬀ the ox’s head after it had kindly carried the rat safely across the water does sound perfectly ratty. And one last reason I am inclined to believe this second version is that in the ﬁrst
version I had to ask “What kind of idiotic Emperor would ask a sneaky rat to act as chief liaison and head organizer for such an important banquet?” Whereas with the second version, the Chinese seem like they announced a contest and are simply behaving as an honorable and fair people by deciding to keep their word—even if it means giving ﬁrst place to a dirty rat that behaved unethically to win the contest. Which reminds me: Last year, at the beginning of the Year of the Pig, a Czech government was formed, so I looked at all the traits of the pig and compared these to Czech politicians. This year, since the United States Presidential elections are occurring, I really should continue the tradition and compare the rat’s traits to the traits of the U.S. Presidential candidates. Unfortunately, explaining how the Chinese picked a rat as the ﬁrst animal of their zodiac took a while, so I am going to have to ask you to contemplate what rat-like traits could possibly be similar to the U.S. Presidential candidates. I am conﬁdent you will ﬁnd some similarities. Actually, that entire zodiac gumball rally seems a lot like this year’s presidential race. I wonder which rat will win.
Vodičkova 36, P1 Tel.: 296 236 498
CHIC Trendy objects
The new Spring/Summer 2008 collection by Diesel plays with ﬂuorescent colors, contrasting fabrics, volume, silhouette,
and innovative shapes in unexpected mixes that are guaranteed to catch the eye of anyone and everyone in the vicinity.
Admit it: when you watched Borat, you were secretly wishing you (or that special guy in your life) had one of those super-sexy bikini things he was wearing and were even planning a trip to Kazakhstan to buy one. Well, plan no more—they’re here!
Think skinny jeans, oversized tops, high heels, sexy sleek shorts, intensely bright tights, sculptural beachwear, white and neon sunglasses. Hit the scene conﬁdently with color and panache!
Stand Umbrella Carve Card Etch out a message to someone special and then send them a unique wooden postcard—just don’t send one to a spy who’ll have to eat it after he reads it…
It doesn’t just stop the rain; it also stands on its own. Now they just need to add a retractable saber blade and they’ll really have something.
Door Hand-le Think Adams Family with style. It’s a door handle that truly gives you a welcome, though it might scare small children with active imaginations.
FASTER, STRONGER, BETTER
Text by Gordon Walker
The Toast Messenger
Where once families were consigned by the low-tech world they lived in to leaving messages to each other on the refrigerator door, today we are able, thanks to the Toast Messenger, to do the much more eﬀicient thing and toast the message into their toast! ‘No!’ you cry, amazed. ‘Yes,’ we cunningly inscribe on the toast we hand you. And the use? We’ll leave that for James Bond to ﬁgure out.
MacBook Air takes small, light, and portable to new highs (or lows, depending how you look at it) and does so with a sleek new design well worthy of the company that brought us the now ubiquitous iPods. It boasts a 13.3 inch screen with serious resolution and sweet colors. The keyboard is backlit which is both helpful and cool looking. It’s slim, fashionable, and functional; nice job yet again, Apple.
Polaroid Instant Mobile Photo Printer Polaroid, realizing adroitly that the digital camera has taken much of the zing out of its staple the instant camera, has decided to try and corner another ‘instant’ market: printing digital photos. The Digital Instant Mobile Photo Printer utilizes ZINK Zero Ink printing technology to instantly (or close to it) create 2” x 3” borderless prints from cameras or camera phones connected via USB or Bluetooth.
Toshiba G450 Toshiba’s G450 4-in-1 mobile device (Phone, Flash Drive, Modem, MP3 Player) oﬀers a paltry 160MB of storage, making it limited as a MP3 player or ﬂash drive, but its HSPDA/GPRS/EDGE modem capabilities are useful. The G450 is also reasonably stylish and functions just ﬁne as a mobile phone, though the unusual double keypad might occasionally trip you up. Should also work well as a conversation starter.
The Enlightenment Book Lamp The Enlightenment Book Lamp is a book-shaped lamp made from white Plexiglas, lit with a 9-watt energy-saving lamp. Whether or not this actually serves to enlighten your entire generation remains to be seen, but regardless, it’s kinda cool to look at, is functional, and ten percent of the proceeds go to fund an education projects run by Edukans Foundation.
E-paper A map you can slap on your wrist that even comes with accelerometers, allowing you to virtually ﬁx the map in space! Woo-wee, if that doesn’t sound like fun, what does? Slap bracelets were generally made of a thin piece of aluminum wrapped in fabric, but Chocolate Agency came up with a mini multimedia device the entire surface of which is E-Paper. Technology on your wrist—so Jetsons!
Dream Chick Segatoys Dream Chick is a chick that responds to pats on its head or back. You may well be thinking Pamela Anderson at this point, but we’re actually talking about baby chicken chick. This toy appears to have been made for those who were enthralled with the idea of raising a virtual puppy or dinosaur, but wanted something more three dimensional. It chirps and ﬂaps its wings, much like Pamela (with something else substituted for the wings).
Gary Baseman Pervasive Artist/Painter/ Toy Designer www.garybaseman.com
5 THINGS I’M LOVING RIGHT NOW Luua
Jorge Zúñiga Pavlov
Writer/Founder of La Casa Blů
DJ / Zero Bar Manager
Top 5 Fashion Faux Pas
Top 5 Books
Top 5 DJanes I Respect
Top 5 Thanks To Give
Two years ago it was Karen O (Yeah Yeah Yeahs) and now it’s Robots in Disguise—how do you feel seeing 10 chic hairdo clones in the same place?
2. Dreadlocks—well, man, Bob Marley is dead, c’mon and wake up
1. Tereza – because she is
2. Anja Schneider
2. The Master
– for their love
4. Sarah Goldfarb
3. Dream Team
3. The Savage
and Margarita by
Detectives by Roberto Bolaño
2. My Family
seaside holiday, Lillou
fasten my seat belt
currently busy with
the new concept of
– for its care
5. Amy Winehouse Luua’s range of computer inspired jewelry from her own label, Hardwear, can be found in various Prague fashion shops including Parazit, Kebab, and Interzone.
Zero Bar (Dušní 8, P1). Take in her vibes at
Tomáš is a Prague
Hidalgo Don Quixote
Zen /Roxy club/ at the
De la Mancha by
chill-out with DJ Airto
Miguel de Cervantes
March 22, or at her
MiniLab party with
Lately he is trying
to behave in more of
Jorge is currently ﬁnishing work on his next story book. Check out his blogs (in Spanish) at: http:// jorgezunigapavlov. blogspot.com/ and in Czech at: www. jorgezpodebrad. blogspot.com
Albacore Sushi – especially from my favorite LA restaurant KatsuYa. In the past few years, the chef Katsu-ya has become very popular and has partnered with some rich folks and opened versions of his restaurant that are Philip Stark designed. I prefer the original more casual Katsu-ya that is located in a mini-mall in Studio City or the Izaka-ya by Katsu-ya near my home.
3. Blackberry Curve – I know I should have an iPhone, and I do love
– for teaching me to
but we love H&M.
4. Lukáš M.
in sandals??—NO COMMENT. Can’t be worse! Maybe you should change to hiking boots.
5. The Ingenious
Here are 5 things I am loving right now that aren’t women or art.
– for their persistence
After a relaxing is back at work and
So I won’t go into those right now...
Brazil – I just returned from three weeks in Brazil, ﬁrst, participating in Sao Paulo for a group show curated by my NY art dealer, Jonathan Levine, then I went to Rio for Carnival. A collector let me stay in her beautiful apartment with 50 ft windows overlooking the most beautiful Sugar Loaf landscape. I now know more people in Brazil than anywhere outside the USA.
3. White socks
4. New Rave is out,
1. Life: A User’s Manual by Georges
It is a given I love women and art.
the design. But my Blackberry is one solid strong communication device that allows me to have correspondence and conversations from Prague to Singapore from anywhere in this world or the next.
Johnson Motors Clothing – Most of the time you will see me in Johnson Motors T-shirts lately. Since I have been going through my divorce, I have had a hard time going into any kind of establishment to buy clothes. (It has to do with my ex-wife who loved to do nothing but shop.) But my friend Sean Kelly who owns Johnson Motors is an amazing designer and I love his shirts and he gives them to me.
5. Photos of people in masks – I have about 2000 found photos of people in masks. I am obsessed. They are all surreal and look like they came out of a David Lynch ﬁlm or the Shining. But they are all taken by non-professional photographers and they are all mine. But I am willing to share and I am working on a book of these gorgeous intense images.
an adult-like manner, to not shoot pictures only on request, and to get fatter.
Gary has exhibitions in Melbourne, Barcelona, and London with lectures in Chile, Russia, and Cyprus. Hopefully, we can soon welcome him here in Prague. Pick up the April issue of Think again to get to know more about Gary Baseman in the cover story.
/Photo of Gary Baseman - Becky Sapp/
Prague opens its ﬁrst Starbucks
It's A Rave Dave
(but deﬁn nitely not its last) Text by Laura Baranik At three o’ clock in the afternoon on opening day of the new Starbucks on Malostranské náměstí, the area around the coﬀee shop’s cash registers was crowded with customers. About a third of them had already paid and were waiting for their drinks to be whipped up by the staﬀ behind the bar. As each order was ﬁnished, a barista placed the labeled cup on the counter. “Grande chai latte for Sandra!” A young woman in dreadlocks went to get her tea, but before she could reach it, an older lady muscled her way through the crowd and grabbed the cup. “That’s my coﬀee!” the lady snapped in Czech as she snatched the drink. “I was here before you!” “Yes,” the younger woman said patiently, “but did you order a grande chai latte? And is your name Sandra?” “Yes, it is! Well, no it isn’t. But my name is Soukupová, and it says Soukupová on the cup.” “No,” said the young woman, pointing to where the barista had clearly written ‘Sandra’ on the cup in pencil. “It says Sandra.” The older woman dug her reading glasses out from her purse. She put them on and squinted at the cup. “It says Soukupová,” she conﬁrmed. “I was here ﬁrst.” The lady strode out of the shop, chai latte in hand. A minute later, the barista called out, “One tall caﬀè latte for Soukupová!” The dreadlocked girl, a 22-year-old Czech native named Alexandra (“they only understood the Sandra part”), exchanged glances with me. “I used to live in Washington, D.C.,” she said. “I got used to going to Starbucks over there, so I was excited when I heard they were opening here. But what you saw just now – that’s Starbucks in Prague. That’s the Čecháčství [loosely translatable as ‘Czechism’], you know?” Alexandra rolled her eyes. “Enchanting.” Alexandra may have used the word sarcastically, but more than a few people really did seem enchanted by the oﬀicial opening of Prague’s ﬁrst Starbucks on Tuesday. One notable
customer was a very eager 90-year-old man, who was spotted by Starbucks Czech Republic’s marketing manager, Alina Tyszkiewicz, at the 9 a.m. ribbon-cutting ceremony. “He was jumping up and down. He was so excited that there was a café here again,” Tyszkiewicz said, referring to the historical literary café that once stood in the same location. “For us, it was a kind of conﬁrmation that we were right to bring Starbucks to this spot.” As I sipped my sickly-sweet chai latte (a tall–small–chai tea latte contains 32 grams of sugar, about 10% of its total volume), I overheard the man sitting next to me talking on his cell phone. “Hey, come check it out!” he said to his friend half-jokingly. “We’re experiencing Starbucks.” I wondered how long the general enthusiasm would last. Lots of locals appeared to be coming by to see what all the fuss was about, but some of them didn’t seem too impressed. “I’m used to Italian espresso joints where you get coﬀee in a minute,” said Jadran Šetlík, a 56-year-old local. “Here I had to wait twenty minutes because all these people were jumping ahead of me. Next time I’ll consider whether I want to go through that again. But in the end, the coﬀee is good.” Šetlík’s last point is debatable—coﬀee connoisseurs almost unanimously shun Starbucks on account of its low-quality, heavily-roasted beans—but local management is conﬁdent that the American mega-chain will ﬁnd its share of regular customers in Prague. “We expect this to be a kind of meeting point, a place where people can hang out and read books and surf the internet,” says Tyszkiewicz. Are she and her team planning to provide the city with more such meeting points? “Deﬁnitely,” Tyszkiewicz says with a grin, and conﬁrms that Starbucks will be opening another branch in Palladium shopping mall by the end of February. “We’re always looking for ways to expand.” Considering Starbucks’s enormous global reach of over 15,000 stores, that’s no surprise. I have to admit, though, that I was a little rattled when I was asked to shell out 180 CZK for a small chai and a medium caﬀè latte. That kind of thing seemed okay in New York, but in Prague? For coﬀee in a paper cup? At these prices, no wonder people are getting possessive over their drinks. But try not to get too upset if someone snatches your cup away from the pickup counter. After all, there’s plenty more where that frappuccino came from.
21 / 3 / 08 PLASTIQUE RADOST FX VECTIF VJ MARTIN FEDOR (SK) SCOOCZECH (CZ) 30th birthday celebration
CHRIS OWN special guest (Kugl Club, St. Gallen, Switzerland)
Capricorn (22 Dec.-19 Jan.)
Cancer (22 June-22 July)
Revisiting unresolved, bad-for-you habits will leave you feeling unsatisﬁed and unraveled, so turn down the lights, turn up the Al Green, and take yourself on a really hot date.
From being open to exploring your partner’s fantasies, to trying out a back-bending handstand position you’ve only read about on the internet, maintaining an anything-goes attitude will satisfy you and yours.
Aquarius (20 Jan.-18 Feb.)
Leo (23 July-22 Aug.)
Be it a ﬂurry of job opportunities, a sudden lusty resurgence in your relationship, or an invitation to that sex party you’ve been so curious about, now’s the time
If you felt you were always getting the shaft—not in the good way—it’s because you were. Fear not: an upward trend is coming that will make you
to go, go, go.
a believer in love.
Pisces (19 Feb.-20 March)
Virgo (23 Aug.-22 Sept.)
But just because the world’s not up to your breakneck pace doesn’t mean you have to put up with it. Make your needs extra clear to bosses and lovers alike.
You’re used to using your sexuality to communicate your needs to others. Your body’s a smooth talker on its own, but without some verbal direction you’ll ﬁnd yourself harboring misplaced resentment.
Aries (21 March-19 April)
Libra (23 Sept.-23 Oct.)
There’ll be a new spring in your step—and if you’re a guy, in other areas as well. We recommend milking this sexual renaissance for all its worth.
You’re not the best at waiting around. But if you don’t chill out, your rash decisions will catch up with you. Keep an open mind and take chances, but with your eyes open.
Taurus (20 April-20 May)
Scorpio (24 Oct.-21 Nov.)
You’re never too old to enter into your longdelayed hobo-tramp phase. Unleash the shackles of subtlety, and you might sink your hooks into a hot stranger. Wear something busy.
This is your month: you’re feeling stronger, sexier, and more capable than should be legal. Remember though, when you’re straddling lots of things at once, something’s bound to fall by the wayside.
Gemini (21 May-21 June)
Sagittarius (22 Nov.-21 Dec.)
Exciting professional opportunities will abound this year. That means you’ll ﬁnd partners to beneﬁt you ﬁnancially and in other ways as well. Make it ﬁlthy in the bedroom with some dastardly positions.
Why do fools fall in love? Why do men fall asleep after sex? Question not how the universe works. Enjoy the universe, in all its romantic and wondrous charms.
The Perfect Gentleman’s Heist
Text by Sinclair Nicholas
I am writing this article from a luxury hotel in the heart of London. The hotel personnel are superb actors playing their roles as domestic servants, so I have decided to be a good sport and play my role as Sir Lord Master of the hotel. At ﬁrst it felt a little odd to pretend that I am one of those rich snobs trotting around the globe in ﬁvestar hotels, and quite frankly I think it’s sad that the appearance of being super rich gains one so much instant and automatic respect in this world. I have always perceived the super rich as spoiled and pampered children who ought to be made to dig a ditch for a few days so as to understand the rest of humanity—and yet I now ﬁnd myself pretending to be one of them. If I didn’t view all this with a color of humor it would surely give me “issues”; however, my current position as a successful psychological usurper makes it possible that everyone else is also merely pretending to be one of “them.” Perhaps there are actually only a few stupidly arrogant “thems” in this entire hotel, though I would have to be here for much longer in order to ﬁgure that out.
I wound up in this hotel with the chandeliers, thick tapestries, period furniture, and Persian rugs because last week the president of a gold-mining company oﬀered to buy me a roundtrip ﬂight to London to negotiate the editing, formatting, and publishing of his book about the gold-mining industry. That’s one of those things that I don’t expect to happen that suddenly happens. A chauﬀeur and limousine retrieved me from the airport in London and dropped me oﬀ at the hotel. Then, as though it were a scene in a movie, the chauﬀeur and hotel doorman nervously fussed over delivering me into the lobby, where the receptionists and several other
personnel fussed over delivering me to my room. Considering that the day before I had been mildly abused by a few typical Czech store attendants, it was now shocking to have an entire cortege fawning over my every perceived need. It cost me quite a few pounds in tips just to get to my room, but that’s ok, I am secretly adding that to my bill for the gold-mining company. So, to avoid feeling embarrassment over such obsequious circumstances, I instantly decided to play my role and speak to the hotel staﬀ from a polite but slightly superior position. The odd thing is that they seemed to like me even more for being the honorable and noble master that I had tricked myself into believing myself to be. All the world’s a stage, and I have always enjoyed being a player upon it. In fact, I quickly developed this British-sounding nobleman’s accent— with a touch of French thrown in just to confuse them—and they absolutely loved it. Whenever I stooped to speak with them, they gratefully fell deeper into their safe, middleclass British accents; many seemed to want to touch me, but always stopped themselves short of this, probably fearing that their lower class germs might displease me. I also had the pleasure of conﬁrming my long-held theory that it isn’t having millions that actually give one real class; rather, it is having a high level of education, a sense of basic decency, and actually being intelligent on top of that. That has always been my theory about what gives a person real class, and so I was glad to have the opportunity to test my theory in reality. Among the Ritz hotel staﬀ, I seemed to be a favorite. I think this is because some of those super rich guests thought that they could show more class by behaving petulantly. A few times, as I drank a cup of coﬀee and read the Herald Tribune while waiting for my chauﬀeur, I heard one of the rich guests complaining (or even threatening staﬀers) over the stupidest things. Of course the Maître d’hôtel, having
such a reﬁned title, could not tell the guest to quit whining or risk getting bitch-slapped for behaving like a spoiled child, but a few times I did exchange knowing looks and conspiratorial winks with the Maître d’. Later in the elevator I had the great pleasure of insulting one of those petulant whiners, and the beauty was that I was doing it as an equal, so I could not be ﬁred or in any way punished for giving him the gauntlet (i.e., bitch-slapping him). He gasped with this look of “how dare you,” and I genuinely laughed in his face. He was the only one who found out I had been wearing a mask, and was secretly an impostor gentleman who could cut to the soul with the common dirtsense of an ungrateful cockney peasant. I also realized that the hotel was good practice since I was about to meet a company board whom I needed to conclude that I am indeed the real thing: a jet-set international publishing expert (I assume this class of person exists, or else I was about to invent it). I knew that I must appear that way so that the gold-mining board of executives would believe I am good at my profession. I do actually know all about my profession (writing and publishing), but they would not believe me unless I seemed like their preconceptions of what an international publisher should be. I also knew—if they were to believe I possessed valuable expertise—I would have to charge them a lot of money for my services. This all turned out to be exactly right, and it seems that indeed I played my hand perfectly. I continued my gentleman act during negotiations and discussions with the gold-mining executives; I handed them out such perfect, melliﬂuent words that I made them also feel that they possessed intelligence, charm, and real class. I heard a few of them using some of those words as I was leaving the board meeting (one said, “ubiquitous” while the other used “rigorous,” and both of these words I had originally borne to the discussion). When I heard that, I knew I had pulled oﬀ the perfect gentleman’s heist.
marketplace in my work, the moral ambiguity and the ambiguity of intention and meaning. And our ambivalence about our personal relationship with the marketplace. These are the things that concern me the most and intrigue me and seem to be most worth grappling with, as content. In fact now that I think about it, I’d love to do an ad campaign for RFID chip implants!
Beatkit™, the ‘brand’ that has no actual product attached to it was created by Seattle-based artist/designer/ illustrator/social critic Shawn Wolfe in 1984 with a pre-set expiration date of 2000 (at which time it did indeed expire). Wolfe’s experience with the advertising industry is what led him to create such a statement attacking the emptiness of consumerism and marketing. The global “Panic Now” campaign which shredded all gloss and romance from ads reducing them to shrill messages to panic. His voice, calling for people to simply wake up and pay attention, is a clear and welcome antidote to the hypnotic spell that television and the world’s marketing agencies have created. He was kind enough to discuss his work past and present along with his views on the world today.
Your work is meant to say what to whom? Pay attention, whoever you are. What made you think you could make a living expressing yourself in this way? I think I took a vow of poverty when I decided to pursue this. Choosing art school over a major in journalism was the ﬁrst step. Anything above and beyond in terms of cash inﬂux has been a welcome surprise. What aspect of society, if any, is most closely examined or criticized in your work? I often begin by examining my own relationship to advertising and the marketplace, whether in simple emotional terms or as a deliberate semiotic exercise, I am reacting and working out my own mechanism for coping. Whether that
comes across as criticism, or absurdism, or basic reﬂection, that’s for others to decide. I think I am also trying to stay with universally-relatable situations, ideas and mental spaces. So if I am criticizing or commenting on something it has emotional resonance for me, but also, as much as possible, for the viewer too. Can you imagine something you produce being a part of a large scale advertising campaign for a multinational company? Sure. Easily. Advertisers can co-opt and utilize anything, no matter how strident or deﬁant it may be. In fact they routinely do this, and have done this for as long as there has been dissent and counter-culture. I have no intention or hope of existing outside of the marketplace. That’s impossible anyhow. Everything we do
exists in relation to the marketplace, even works that stand in contrast to it or in deﬁance of it are inevitably deﬁned by it, in relationship to it. That’s the world we live in. It’s a matter of degree I guess, or scale. And scale in itself is beside the point. I guess the big question, if there is one, is can I imagine something I produced being put to use to endorse or advocate for a company I dislike, like Halliburton or Verichip. I would not pursue a gig like that. But even still, it is possible to imagine devising some kind of language that says two things at once, and accomplishes two things at once, advocacy and criticism. In fact some of my favorite pieces do this—say and mean more than one thing, especially opposite things. I guess that’s part of reﬂecting the
What inspires you when you’re feeling particularly bereft of ideas? Well this happens often. That’s like asking someone “Where do you get your ideas from?” and I can never answer that question. If I knew, I’d go there right now and get some. The key is, like I said, “Pay attention”. We’re swimming in inspiration and motivation; it’s drowning us and drowning us out. The world around us is assaulting us constantly with what could be considered potential inspiration, it’s up to us to look and listen and notice and ﬁnd some use all this garbage might be put to. Was this what you dreamed of being as a child? What… an artist? A graphic designer? I suppose so. Though when I was a child I had no idea what a graphic designer or an illustrator even was. The thought of growing up to be an artist was as ludicrous as the thought of growing up to be a poet. When I was a young child all I knew about was cartooning and that’s what I did in those days. Even as a senior in high school I was primarily pursuing political cartoonist as my career choice. Then I learned about graphic design and that seemed like more of a practical career. In hindsight I have often thought that political cartoonist would have been a noble pursuit and would have satisﬁed me and possibly suited me better than design. But, maybe not. Political cartoons seem so arcane now, and antiquated, but I love that about them. Has the world gone to hell now that there’s no more Far Side, Calvin and Hobbes, and Bloom County? It would seem so. It is tempting to connect the dots on this, but I don’t think you can draw a direct correlation between the demise of these comic strips and the state of the world, hellish though it may be. Now, if Doonesbury and Zippy go down, then we may have a problem on our hands. Talk to us for a moment, if you would, about your new book. It’s called Signs of Life and it is a continuation of
Uncanny. Including both my commercial work as well as my “art”—both of which are exploring many of the same themes. Signs, signals, signiﬁcance. The title is something that can be read literally or ﬁguratively… life versus lifestyle versus lifelessness, signs of intelligent life in a world that’s getting dumber and dumber… and many of the new pieces take the form of actual physical signage, carved in wood, even though these are surrealistic signs about signs. The question, as with Beatkit and Panic Now is still, and is always, “what—if anything—does this signify?” And it’s a question we should put to the world around us more often. In my opinion. If you could somehow do away with materialistic, consumerist culture and replace it with something else, would you? And what would you replace it with—feel free to be somewhat vague. Ideally I wouldn’t replace it completely. Consumerism is a life function by deﬁnition, so there’s that. The consuming of things isn’t avoidable or something we can free ourselves from. One of the biggest false ﬂags is the old argument of capitalism versus socialism, and I think we’ve been browbeaten with this either/or ultimatum mentality, for generations, even though in America and elsewhere we are at our best when we take full advantage of both systems. Free and open markets, but also public schools, public libraries, public ﬁre and police departments, public roads. The big failure of the health care system in America for example is the result of letting the marketplace take it over completely. My other answer to this question is for people to give some consideration to virtual communities like Second Life, where we can indulge our consumer appetites and pursue our accumulation of status symbols (fancy home, furnishings, gold shoes, leather pants, crazy vehicles, etc.) to our hearts’ content, amassing as much stuﬀ as we want, satisfying the warped part of us that is determined to continue caring about superﬁcialities like material wealth, but with zero impact on the physical environment. I think there is a real future in that kind of virtual community and virtual environment, whereas the endless pursuit of real huge homes and bling and luxury vehicles and travel is unsustainable in the long run. The age of easy-motoring is coming to an end, and if we want to continue living in this world we’re going to have to make these kinds of compromises. How does Prague ﬁt into your view of things? I’ve never been to Prague but Franz Kafka is one of my earliest and still greatest literary heroes. When I was in a band years ago our name was Joe Kafka.
I think he was a brilliant visionary of the modern age. He still feels fresh and relevant, maybe more than ever as our institutions and systems and governments grow ever further beyond our easy knowledge and comprehension. I have a book called Conversations With Kafka by Gustav Janouch which is said to be a fabricated account of the author’s visits with Kafka during the years when he worked in Prague and whether or not it is ﬁction or factual, the Kafka portrayed seems vivid and real and the accounts of Prague make me want to see it all for myself before I die. One of my favorite Kafka pieces is a sort story called The Cares of A Family Man where he describes this disturbing little creature called Odradek who lives under the stairs in his home. He describes it as made up of a discarded spool and bits of twine. Basically an inanimate object that is nothing but a collection of trash, but that is alive and speaks to him and threatens to outlive him, and he is unable to ignore the Odradek or dismiss it or sweep it into the trash. Instead, he has an existential reckoning and despairs at the thought of this little nothing outliving him. I always felt that way about the Remover Installer from the Panic Now campaign that it was infused with life, at least as much if not more than the viewer who sees it, or the consumer who buys it. Like the Odradek it has “no ﬁxed abode” and utters troubling little lines of dialogue like “I’m alive™” and glories in the fact that it has no purpose, no function, no utility. Yet it exists and appeals to us and charms us and threatens to outlive us. What is your favorite ﬁlm? I don’t know if I have a favorite but I do have a handful of ﬁlms I’ve gone back and watched too many times to count and they tend to be dystopian and what I call “social science ﬁction”, in other words Earthbound ﬁlms about our future that aren’t about technology but about society. A Clockwork Orange, THX 1138, Rollerball, Brazil, Gattaca, and most recently Idiocracy are all masterful in their own way. What are you working on at the moment? At the moment I’m working on an illustration that is part of collaboration on a book cover with graphic designer Jacob McMurray. The book is by science ﬁction author Thomas Disch called The Proteus Sails Again: Further Adventures at the End of the World. I’m also currently working on a new wood carving for the group art show Balls Out that is opening at Grass Hut in Portland in March.
Sydney Lumet is a force for good on the big screen. His classics, like Serpico, Prince of the City, and Dog Day Afternoon often involve ordinary people whose lives take on meaning not from grand gestures or unusual character, but rather from the sequence of small decisions that lead to either or great or terrible consequences. Assisted by a plethora of excellent actors (Phillip Seymore Hoﬀman, Marissa Tomei, Ethan Hawke and Albert Finney) turning in great performances, Lumet has another classic on his hands in Before the Devil Knows You’re dead. A tale of greed, envy, murder, family breakdown, and more, this is a ﬁlm that truly must be seen.
Crime/Drama/Thriller, 117 min, USA
No Country for Old Men
Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead
Woody Allen The typical Woody Allen ﬁlm presents a masterful blend of satire and wit with occasionally outlandish scenarios. More often, however, his ﬁlms are so true to life that they inspire us to ponder philosophical complexities even while we are laughing. One of the most proliﬁc and uncompromising ﬁlmmakers of all time, Allen continues to average a ﬁlm a year—most of which he writes, directs, and stars in. Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex But Were Afraid to Ask (1972)
Allen is at his best at depicting his own milieu, and in Manhattan, he turns his
Starring: Gene Wilder, Woody Allen, Burt Reynolds, John Carradine, Louise Lasser,
between two women—a naïve high school girl (Mariel Hemingway) he is dating,
Cormac McCarthy seems to pump out classic, violent tales with an ease and assurance that is nearly matched by the ease with which the Coen brothers produce unusual, dark, comic cinematic masterpieces. Well someone apparently had the great idea of putting the two together and the result is an absolute wonder. No Country for Old Men follows two primary characters: Llewelyn Moss (Josh Brolin), a vet who ﬁnds 2 million dollars from a drug deal gone bad and then goes on the run with it and Anton Chigurh (Javier Bardem), the badass motherfu_ sent to recover the money and take Moss down. Superbly acted, shot, directed, and anything else you can think of, this is truly a masterpiece. It’s so good I didn’t even have a chance to mention how good Tommy Lee Jones is in it (and he is).
Jack Barry, Tony Randall
and Mary Wilkie (Diane Keaton), a sophisticated writer. The problem is, Mary is
Crime/Drama/Thriller, 122 min, USA
Widely named among the greatest comedies of all time, Annie Hall stars Diane
focus on the Upper West Side intellectual set. Allen plays a struggling writer torn
having an aﬀair with his best friend—also a writer, who happens to be married Based on the famous self-help book by Donald Reuben, Everything You Always
to another woman. All the while, he is attempting to dissuade his ex-wife (Meryl
Wanted to Know… consists of a series of comedic sketches illustrating various
Streep), now a lesbian, from publishing a tell-all memoir in which she exposes his
perversions and proclivities. “Why Do Some Women Have Trouble Reaching an
failures as a husband. While this is Allen’s least favorite ﬁlm of his career, it is
Orgasm,” for example, parodies Italian ﬁlmmakers such as Antonioni, while the
also among his most successful.
‘50s game show “What’s My Line?” becomes “What’s My Perversion?”
Deconstructing Harry (1997) Annie Hall (1977)
Starring: Woody Allen, Kirstie Alley, Richard Benjamin, Billy Crystal, Elisabeth
Starring: Diane Keaton, Woody Allen
Shue, Tobey Maguire, Mariel Hemingway, Robin Williams, Demi Moore, Eric Bogosian, Richard Benjamin
There Will Be Blood
Keaton as a ditsy midwestern girl trying to ﬁnd herself in the Big Apple, and Allen
Allen plays Harry Block, a neurotic writer whose life is made all the more
as the neurotic stand-up comedian who pursues her—and ultimately wins her
complicated by the fact that his books are largely inspired by his relationships
love. The story is told in the past tense by Allen’s character, who frequently breaks
with others. When Harry is invited to receive an honorary degree from the
the fourth wall in order to comment on the action—a Woody Allen trademark.
university he was kicked out of, all sorts of trouble ensues, as he shows up at the
Annie Hall is one of those quintessential ‘70s ﬁlms that remarkably manage to say
ceremony with his young son, kidnapped from his ex-wife, a prostitute, and a
so much about the culture-at-large through the guise of an intimate love story.
corpse. Featuring a host of cameos, Deconstructing Harry is one of the funniest ﬁlms of the 1990s.
This happens to be a great time to catch a ﬁlm apparently, as There Will Be Blood stands right up to the other two ﬁlms reviewed herein and does so without ﬂinching or giving up an ounce in quality. Any ﬁlm that features Daniel Day Lewis, as this one does, is in event if for no other reason than that, but this one has plenty of other reasons. Start with a solid (though not perfect) screenplay based loosely on an Upton Sinclair novel, add brilliant cinematography, and then sprinkle on great pacing and tension and then follow with what may be the greatest of Lewis’s performances (which is saying one hell of a lot) and you have a true, though mildly ﬂawed, masterpiece. Do not miss it. Or either of the above ﬁlms. Period.
Interiors (1978) Starring: Diane Keaton, Mary Beth Hurt, Geraldine Page, Kristin Griﬀith
Scoop (2006) Starring: Woody Allen, Scarlett Johansson, Hugh Jackman
Probably one of Allen’s least known ﬁlms, it is also one of his best. It is one of the few Allen ﬁlms in which Allen himself does not appear. Interiors explores the
A young college student and aspiring journalist (Scarlett Johansson) vacationing
inner lives of three sisters—played by Diane Keaton, Mary Beth Hurt, and Kristin
in London receives the scoop of a lifetime when a reporter comes back from the
Griﬀith—and their conﬂicts with their suicidal mother (Geraldine Page.) One of
dead to inform her that the wealthy son of a knight may in fact be the notorious
Allen’s few dramas, Interiors was directly inspired by the ﬁlms of Ingmar Bergman.
Tarot Card Killer that London’s ﬁnest have been hunting for months. While this is certainly not Allen’s greatest ﬁlm, its many weak points are redeemed by Allen’s
own performance as a ﬂedgling magician.
Starring: Woody Allen, Meryl Streep, Diane Keaton, Mariel Hemingway
Drama, 158 min, USA
FILM Since this oﬀbeat, black and white movie was released, it has created a stir everywhere it’s been shown, be it last year’s Cannes or the BAFTA’s. Control is the opus magnum of photographer-cum video director-cum movie director Anton Corbijn. His biopic explores the dramatic life of Ian Curtis, a Wertherian character, played by the excellent Sam Riley, who was the leader of the legendary Factory records band Joy Division and who ended his life tragically at the age of just twenty-three. The main focus of the ﬁlm is Curtis himself, rather than his band, as was the case in Michael
Biography/Music/Drama, 121 min, UK/USA/Japan
Winterbottom’s 24 Hour Party People. Corbijn doesn’t repress his photographic skills (he was originally a photographer) as the movie is exquisitely shot and expresses the innate melancholy of the story and its setting in the industrial Manchester of the seventies. “During the ﬁrst two weeks that I spent in England, I managed to make the famous Joy Division photograph in the underground,” says Corbijn. “That alone is an incredible experience—you go from one country to another, meet a band that inspires you to move, you take their photograph and several decades later, all this leads to a ﬁlm.”
BOOKS Text by Travis Jeppesen
Show Adult by Peter Sotos
Peter Sotos is undoubtedly the most uncompromising writer alive today, and Show Adult, his most recent book, has provoked the standard amount of controversy that every Sotos release to date has generated. For those uninitiated to Sotos’s work, prepare for the worst. For it is the basest impulses and the most depraved dregs of humanity that ultimately fascinate Sotos the most. His subject is sex and its relationship to aesthetic experience. But there is no romance here, no optimistic aﬀirmations of the centrality of sex in the human life cycle as a means of reproduction. Instead, sex is shown to be what it is—a crude biological need, one that many people are willing to degrade themselves to a level beneath humanity to attain. Bestiality, child pornography, real-life anonymous sex in porn shops and gloryhole bars, and the mass media’s fascination with everything grim and perverse are explored in gory detail, causing the weakest stomachs to cringe and most minds to turn oﬀ automatically. The writing isn’t “intellectual” in the sense we’re used to deciphering, yet behind its obvious crudities hides a subtle layer of wisdom into pathological states that is as unsettling as it is meaningful. Show Adult, like Sotos’s other books, makes no eﬀort to conceal its author’s engagement with the material he so brutally dissects. The book’s main controversy, rooted in an uproar spurned by “concerned” individuals on the Internet who have obviously never read this book or any of Sotos’s other writings, is over the fact that the case of Masha Allen forms an integral part of the content. Allen was abducted as a young child from a Russian orphanage by an American pedophile, who proceeded to keep her as a sex slave, simultaneously uploading pornographic pictures of her online.
Sotos treats the mass media’s obsession with Allen’s victimization as pornography. In fact, this has been a central tenet of Sotos’s writing to date. Show Adult, like Sotos’s previous books, exposes the dishonesty and oftentimes-muddled intentions that lie behind every form of sexual exploitation.
Disco Not Disco
mixed by Skream
Rinse FM/Neuton Medien “Rinse” is a new compilations series of pirated music by the infamous UK radio station Rinse FM that has showcased a lot of underground artists in the 13 years of its existence. After the success of the ﬁrst mix by Geeneus, Rinse FM’s second mix is a strong selection from THE dubstep man of the moment, Skream (real name Olli James) who at 21 years of age is surprisingly young for someone who has made an incredible mark on the scene. Still in step with his earlier, skatinged, head bopping productions, Skream oﬀers in Rinse 02 a great selection of exclusive new tracks from his huge vault, all delivering blistering bass lines while keeping the dutty, low-frequency skank purring in the background. His own productions are accompanied by cuts from Zinc, Distance, Benga, Coki, D1, and others among the 24 tracks. In this mix, Skream again shows his eclectic inﬂuences by taking you on a long journey through various sounds. One word of warning: Dubstep should be listened to with a lot of bass. LOTS of bass. Good luck with the neighbors!
8/10 Sirius Smart Sounds
Tru Thoughts The period just after punk imploded in Europe and candycoated pop of the eighties seized the airwaves, a bunch of misﬁts loosely connected under the label post-punk ditched abrasive riﬀs in favor of more funk-ridden rhythms. Disco Not Disco is a compilation series that unearths the hidden gems of the post-punk era and its third installment continues with a hand-picked selection of leftﬁeld electro, strange disco, and post-punk most which you’ve probably never heard of. Delta 5’s Mind Your Own Business with its disco punk and blunt vocals is a perfect epitome of this era, as is the proto-techno masterpiece Sharevari by a Number of Names that subsequently paved the way for another vanguard movement— Detroit techno. Yellow Magic Orchestra’s oriental tinged Seoul follows in a more abstract vein, ditching bold guitar riﬀs in favor of vocal samples and melody, while Liaisons Dangereuses’ Los Ninos Del Parque is an instrumental number with repetitive beats that no doubt reached its peak on the dance ﬂoors, while Vivian Goldman’s Launderette, on the other hand, is a laid-back number with prominent dub bass. Disco Not Disco: Post Punk, Electro & Leftﬁeld Disco Classics 1974-1986 is a noteworthy exploration of an intriguing era.
7/10 Lucia Udvardyová
Alice Russell is one of the best voices in soul, this decade, and her sweet pain on the opening classic reggae track “Hurry On Now” (Boub Remix) is the perfect opener for this 16 track compilation of artists on the Brighton-based Tru Thoughts label. On this collection, Spengler’s “Good Things” (a duet), and Freddie Cruger’s “Pushing On’ featuring Linn both out-groove the slow soul-funk ala Erykah Badu. Up Hygh’s “Compatible” is like Sly & the Family Stone updated to a humorously sly electro-hip hop. From Quantic, there is “Politik Society” remixed and featuring Noel, and the Quantic Soul Orchestra’s “Paintings & Journeys.” Both are smooth Latin dance tracks, and Spanky Wilson & The QSO make good party funk on “Waiting For Your Touch.” Nostalgia 77’s “Wildﬂower” is soaring jazz, with equal afro-Cuban percussion and acoustic jazz roots, topped oﬀ with a female lounge crooner and attitude galore. The Bamboo’s redo the dance club classic “Happy” in a soul-jazz “soundtrack” version, and Me & You’s “Ze Zam” is a ﬁne Brazilian batacuda groove that shifts in and out of control. Diesler featuring Carla Alexandar do an upbeat electro-Brazilian in “Into the Woods,” as well. Anyway, these are the standouts.
8/10 Tony Ozuna
Three years after their last album Untilted, Autechre, the British lords of leftﬁeld electronica, return with their ninth album, Quaristice. Quaristice follows in a similar sonic trajectory to what was already Autechre’s blueprint on Untilted, namely, cacophonic glitches and noises that do not attempt to delight the listener, but rather test his or her aural patience, though the new LP abandons the mechanistic feel of old in favor of nostalgia driven beats and random, but ethereal chime. Twenty tracks with names that are as cryptic as before, such as Fol3, WNSN, and 90101-5l-l. Musically, the album is a mix of ambient, droning songs like Parallel Suns that are surprisingly comfortably nestled between stuttering “non-music” in Steels and the more melodic Simmm and Theswere that recall IDM’s best era. Notwo follows in a distinctly macabre vein, a claustrophobic post-apocalyptic requiem that is reminiscent of ex Zoviet France’s Rapoon droning oeuvre, while Altibzz, the album’s opening track, unrolls with sublime sound and melancholic analogue synths echoing from afar. Quaristice is a ﬁne album, although it probably would have made more sense had it come out in 1998.
7/10 Lucia Udvardyová
By the time he stole a sampler from his high school, Dan
laden dream-like sound that drew as much from electronica as
Snaith’s future had been already mapped out. He had been
it did from indie and jazz. Enter Caribou, a name he has been
recording music in rural Ontario. “Before I could drive, and
using since the above mentioned court battle, and the critically
living in the middle of nowhere in the countryside, there
acclaimed album The Milk of Human Kindness inspired by
weren’t many options aside from practicing music, playing
Krautrock bands like Neu!, Can, and American groups such as
music and recording music all in complete isolation.” His debut
Lightning Bolt. His latest LP is Andorra that sees him embrace
LP Start Breaking My Heart under the moniker Manitoba, which
pop melodies and which has been supported by live shows by
he lost in a bizarre court battle, paved the way for the sample-
Caribou in the form of a four piece band.
The more inspiring indie bands have arguably not been coming out of the UK, but from the deep vaults of America. Black Lips, a case in point, is an Atlanta based band whose sound falls somewhere between blues, rock, country, and punk and who were proclaimed “The Hardest Working Band” at the 2007 South by Southwest festival in Texas. Their live shows have garnered attention not just because they involve vomiting, pissing, and kissing, but also for their music. “Usually we are very drunk and excited. I don’t really remember much of what happens when we play. A lot of times I’m hurt, but I don’t feel it until later.”
Black Dice plays Prague in March. This New York based purveyor of uncompromising sounds ranging from glitchy IDM to noise to post-punk have been stirring Big Apple’s underground since late nineties and have released on Williamsburg’s label DFA along with a number of other labels as well. The band debuted in 1998 on Gravity Records leaning with a sound that tilted more towards rock, though they later embraced electronics. Their ebullient show is best witnessed live, so hop on the 176 and head up to 007. With Czech breakcore meister Ježíš táhne na Berlín.
31/3 Club 007 Strahov, www.myspace.com/bohemianlikeyounight
4/3 Club 007 Strahov, www.klub007strahov.cz
You’d have a hard time trying to categorize Ninja Tune maverick Amon Tobin. The Brazilian beat-meister embarked on a musical journey in the mid-eighties when he embraced the sprawling hip hop and electro scenes in his newly adopted home, the UK. His debut album, Bricolage, appeared in 1997 and displayed his penchant for borrowing samples and superbly recreating them. Several albums and EPs later, Tobin reached his artistic climax in 2006 with a score for Taxidermia, the bizarre Hungarian ﬁlm about stuﬀed animals. His latest LP is 2007 The Foley Room.
Tough Boys Don’t Dance, or do they? If Lincoln Barrett aka High Contrast is in the mix, they might be tempted. Tough Boys Don’t Dance is Barret’s latest release on the revered drum’n’bass label Hospital records. Even though his more mellow style of d’n’b that came to be known as liquid funk might not be suited for tough boys, it has taken the world’s clubs by storm. His debut LP True Colours came out in 2002 on Hospital followed by the acclaimed sophomore LP High Society. In 2005, he set up his own label The Contrast and still ranks as an in-demand DJ, remixer and producer.
25/4 Archa Theatre, www.archatheatre.cz
21/3 Roxy, www.roxy.cz
The Whitest Boy Alive
The Whitest Boy Alive makes inoﬀensive pop-driven and folk-infused tunes with aﬀable guitar riﬀs, dreamy vocals, and random electronics thrown in for good measure. The band came into existence in Germany in 2003 as an electronic-based project and progressed into a full blown band that features Erlend Øye who also moonlights in the Norweigan band Kings of Convenience and whose soothing voice is a signiﬁcant element of the band’s success. “The Whitest Boy Alive contest frowns upon excessive displays of vocal exuberance, and its champion and house band are obligated to comply.” states Pitchfork.
V9kend was originally intended to be a sizeable urban indoor festival courtesy of the people behind the massive Summer of Love fest. Though it abruptly shrank into a club-based event, it still manages to carry some weight with two nights dedicated to electronics, techno and minimal on Friday with headliners Apparat, who will play live with fellow Berlinette Ellen Allien gracing the decks. Saturday will follow in a more downbeat vein with Massive Attack’s Daddy G and the doyen of smoked out beats DJ Krush.
26/3 Palác Akropolis, www.palacakropolis.cz
28/2–1/3 Retro, Abaton, www.v9kend.cz
14. 3. Friday/Pátek
CROSS CLUB: Jungle DNB Session:
CROSS CLUB: Drumstation: Bongo
Katcha, T2B, Toxa, Getis
Chilli, Beast 67, Appu
DUPLEX: Dirty Dancing: DJs Anthony
DUPLEX: Dirty Dancing: DJs Enrico,
M, Tommy Rogers, Peet
Tommy Rogers, Peet CHATEAU ROUGE: Boogie: DJs T.T. Soulgangster, Lucas Hulan, Malkao MATRIX: Czech it: DJs Heist, MC Ardimann, Katcha MECCA: Just Scandal: DJs Kae, Macio MISCHMASCH: DJs Jakub V., Brian PALÁC AKROPOLIS: Future Line: Live Crossband, Haiku RADOST FX: Lollypop Magic: DJs Fun, Renda, Vilém RETRO: Mind: DJs Sean Tyas, Manuel Le Saux, Michael C ROXY: Ultima: DJs Marko Nastič, Agent, Jerry, Monotype STYX: S-Night Resurrection: DJs Lussja vs B.unq, Golpe vs Muerte U MALÉHO GLENA: Robert Balzar Trio ZERO: Domino: DJs Canobee, Resque, Box
CHATEAU ROUGE: Colorful House: DJs Dan Cooley, Madman MECCA: Vibe: DJs Tripmain, Adam Cloud, Efendy, Kaz D MISCHMASCH: DJs Jakub V., Brian LA FABRIKA: Sperm Festival: Live Frank Bretschneider, Olaf Bender, Tropajn, Ghostmother, Burbuja PALÁC AKROPOLIS: Rudeboy Rhythm DJs RADOST FX: Spring Beats: DJs Chris Sadler, Big J, Petr K RETRO: DrumiX: DJs SKC, Jay Rome, Biﬁdus Aktif, ROXY: Human Traﬀix: DJs Budai, Vic, Loutka STYX: Route 60: DJs Tshunas, Dan F. U MALÉHO GLENA: Filip Gondolán Band ZERO: Afrodrops Nite: DJs Pat Heart,
7. 3. Friday/Pátek
15. 3. Saturday/Sobota 8. 3. Saturday/Sobota ABATON: Live Modeselektor, Pfadﬁnderei, Deadbeat, Joakim & His Ectoplamic Band BLIND EYE: Spank Party: DJs I/M, LOG CROSS CLUB: Fuse: ZZZ The Ceo, Bebe, Marek, Alert DUPLEX: Clublife: DJs Ronny, Smoke, Nuﬀ CHATEAU ROUGE: Nightlife Underground: DJs Formi, Squint MISCHMASCH: Mixx Maxx: DJs Milan Kroužil, Jakub V PALÁC AKROPOLIS: Royal Hi-Fi DJs RADOST FX: Soultrain Weekender: DJs She Devil, Big J, Rico, 12play ROXY: Vortex VII: DJs Andromeda, TV + Nem, Alex Droid U MALÉHO GLENA: Steve Clarke Band XT3: Funky Hot Saturday: Live JamiroquaiCZ, DJ Stention
LET IT ROLL PHOTO BY DRAVONFOTO.CZ
CROSS CLUB: War is not the Answer:
Caterva, Micky Freeze, Trevelyan DUPLEX: Duplex Police Department: DJs
Lafayette, Hector Lopez, Sound Tropez GECKO: Minimos 2: Live Insect Elektrika, DJs Spyker, Pan Vigo aka Tep CHATEAU ROUGE: Showstaarzzz: DJs A.L.I., Babylon Rocker MECCA: Loutka versus Adler: DJs Chris Sadler, Loutka, Mark Evil MISCHMASCH: Mixx Maxx: DJs Milan Kroužil, Jakub V RADOST FX: Soultrain Weekender: DJs Brainythug, Big J, Rico, 12play ROXY: Breaksome: DJs Czech, Jan 2, Voita, Adelight, Electrom, Petr-Ik STYX: Teknoteque: DJs R.I.P. vs. Whiteass U MALÉHO GLENA: Roman Pokorný Fusion Jazz Q ZERO: Electric Eclectic: Chicken Loops, Obar V live bass
DATAROCK PHOTO BY GONZA
MATRIX: Technoteque 2:
CROSS CLUB: Culture Move:
DJs Dread Beat Squad
Brains, Wickeda, Yukimura
MECCA: Beefeater Meccamix: DJs
CHATEAU ROUGE: Grande Noche:
Tony Haze, Kuba Soucheck, Marty
DJs Jan Drahota, Lukáš Mička
MISCHMASCH: DJs Jakub V., Brian
MISCHMASCH: DJs Jakub V., Brian
PALÁC AKROPOLIS: Ruchadze
RADOST FX: Remember House: DJs
Band, Amsterdam Beyond
Koenie, Loutka, Lucas
RADOST FX: Plastique: DJs Chris
ROXY: One Night!: DJs Josef
Own, Fedor, Scooczech, Vectif
Sedloň, Dan Cooley, Béla en
ROXY: Bush: DJs High Contrast,
U MALÉHO GLENA: Petr Zelenka
Ghonzales, IM Cyber, Kubatko,
ZERO: Chunky Sushi: DJs Slim
U MALÉHO GLENA: Marcel Flemr
Buddah, Dario Marquez
21. 3. Friday/Pátek
Blues Band XT3: Praggabash: DJs Dancehall Ting, Damalistic aka Roots Survival,
29. 3. Saturday/Sobota
CROSS CLUB: Dubplate Speciál:
ZERO: Eclectronic: DJs Fatty, Dita,
Top Cat, MC Amdiez, Mustakillah
Sound DUPLEX: DJs Filtry Funk Funk,
22. 3. Saturday/Sobota
CHATEAU ROUGE: Frisbee: DJs
BLIND EYE: Spank Party: DJ Log
Jakub Mildner, Béla En, E-Lite
DUPLEX: Discovery!: DJs Neo,
MATRIX: DnB: DJs 2k, Bifudus Aktif,
CHATEAU ROUGE: Breakpoint: DJs
MECCA: Selectro: DJs Bon Finix,
Scarcoke, Jerry, Lazyphunk
MECCA: DJs Felix da Housecat,
MISCHMASCH: Mixx Maxx: DJs
Milan Kroužil, Jakub V
MISCHMASCH: Mixx Maxx: DJs
PALÁC AKROPOLIS: Recyclit
Milan Kroužil, Jakub V
Night: Dead Kids, The Uniques
RADOST FX: Soultrain Weekender:
RADOST FX: Soultrain Weekender:
DJs Noir, Big J, Rico, 12play
DJs Kofi, Big J, Rico, 12play
ROXY: Zen: DJs Roman Rai, Tazz,
ROXY: Climax Special!: DJs Hoxton
Bo.dan, Comics, Airto, Lillou
Whores, Chris Sadler
STYX: Welcome To Hell: DJs
STYX: Dread Beat Squad Tribal DJs
U MALÉHO GLENA: Cyrille
U MALÉHO GLENA: Jakub Zomer
XT3: Funky Hot Saturday: Live
XT3: Funky Hot Saturday: Live
Fuego, DJ Blond
Jupiter, Wonder, DJs Fun Freak
ZERO: Funkedelic: DJs Babe Ln,
ZERO: Cartoon Clash Nite: Fakes Djs
28. 3. Friday/Pátek ABATON: Take Kontrol: DJs Audio,
Kyanid, Beast 67, Suki, Bifidus Aktif
CROSS CLUB: Sound Headquarters:
PHOTO BY LUCIA UDVARDYOVÁ
Mac Koall, Moving Ninja, Valoa, Matoa CHATEAU ROUGE: Blackmania
Special Night! DJs Master J.C., Kaz D
ANTI ST. VALENTINE PHOTO BY SPANK
CLUBS HAPPY DANCING Watch out! Everyone is cute, well-dressed and happy. Duplex P1, Václavské náměstí 21 www.duplex.cz Celnice P1, V Celnici 4 www.clubcelnice.com Daylong (OC Palladium) P1, Nám. Republiky 1 www.daylong-disco.com Karlovy Lázně P1, Smetanovo nábřeží 198 www.karlovylazne.cz Misch Masch P7, Veletržní 61 www.mischmasch.cz Mecca P7, U Průhonu 3 www.mecca.cz
Retro Club P2, Francouzská 4 www.retropraha.cz Radost FX P2, Bělehradská 120 www.radostfx.cz Roxy P1, Dlouhá 33 www.roxy.cz
CHAT’N’CHILL You know those kinds of places where you dance between chats? Bars or clubs with pleasant modern sound around you. Aloha Wave Lounge P1, Dušní 11 www.alohapraha.cz Bordo Club P2, Vinohradská 40 www.bordo.cz
Coyotes P1, Malé Náměstí 2 www.coyotes.cz
Rock Café P1, Národní třída 20 www.rockcafe.cz
Styx P8, Sokolovská 144 www.clubstyx.cz
Chateau Rouge P1, Jakubská 2 www.chateaurouge.cz
Vagon P1, Národní 25 www.vagon.cz
Kain P3, Husitská 1 www.kain.cz
Klub Lávka P1, Novotného lávka 1 www.lavka.cz
JAZZ Prague’s most acclaimed jazz musicians play in these well-known jazz clubs.
Lalibela P5, Holečkova 17 www.lalibela.cz
M1 Lounge P1, Masná 1 myspace.com/m1lounge Nebe P1, Křemencova 10 www.nebepraha.cz Vertigo P1, Havelská 4 www.vertigo-club.cz Wigwam P1, Zborovská 54 www.cafebarwigwam.cz Zero P1, Dušní 8 myspace.com/zeroprague
GUITARS AND INDIES You don’t have to be old fashioned to listen to guitars. This sound is immortal! Batalion music pub P1, ul. 28 října 3 www.batalion.cz Futurum P5, Zborovská 7 www.musicbar.cz Lucerna Music Bar P1, Vodičkova 36 www.musicbar.cz
Malostranská Beseda P1, Malostranské nám. 21 mb.muzikus.cz
Agharta Jazz P1, Železná 16 www.agharta.cz Jazzclub U Staré paní USP P1, Michalská 9 www.jazzlounge.cz U Malého Glena P1, Karmelitská 23 www.malyglen.cz Unijazz P1, Jindřišská 5 www.unijazz.cz
SMOKED BEATZ Styles & rhythms change daily here but the good vibes and atmosphere stay the same. Techno, d’n’b, jungle, hip hop. Underground sounds. Abaton P8, Na Košince 8 www.prostorabaton.cz
Matrix P3, Koněvova 13 www.matrixklub.cz Palác Akropolis P3, Kubelíkova 27 www.palacakropolis.cz Shadow Azyl P5, Kroftova 1 www.shadowazyl.cz Sedm Vlků P3, Vlkova 7 www.sedmvlku.cz U Bukanýra P1, nábřeží L. Svobody www.bukanyr.cz Wakata P7, Malířská 14 www.wakata.cz XT3 P3, Rokycanova 29 www.xt3.cz
Boiler RX P9, Novovysočanská 19 www.boiler.cz
AFTER DANCE It is well accepted that a party should never end. Be aware that there is no point in visiting the following places before 6am.
Club 007 P6, Chaloupeckého 7 www.klub007strahov.cz
Le Clan P2, Balbínova 23 www.leclan.cz
Cross Club P7, Plynární 23 www.crossclub.cz
Studio 54 P1, Hybernská 38 www.studio54.cz
Food Flash Prague seems to be experiencing something of a boom in the dining business, with new restaurants opening nearly every week. Among them are a few chains: Bohemia Bagel opened another location, this time in Nebušice; Starbucks recently debuted in Malá Strana and has already opened a second location in Palladium; and Polish casual dining spot Sphinx has landed near Slovanský dům. Other establishments underwent winter facelifts. Vězenská wine bar Vino di Vino has turned into Luna di Notte, a restaurant and music club. Radost FX has a new menu featuring plenty of new dishes along with old favorites, Jáma welcomed the New Year with the addition of a new bar, and homey Mediterranean restaurant Luka Lu has opened a winter garden in the back of the restaurant and introduced a new menu. Brand new joints include the Sushi Bistro above be kara OK! karaoke box club on Legerova and Monarchie in Lucerna pasáž, which specializes in turn-of-the-century Austro-Hungarian cuisine. Dobrou chuť! Bohemia Bagel
Luna di Notte
Nebušická 491, P6 (at the Fusion Center) Tel.: 737 412 105 www.bohemiabagel.cz
Vězeňská 3, P1 tel: 222 312 999 www.lunadinotte.cz
Újezd 33, P1 Tel.: 257 212 388 www.loukalu.eu
Bělehradská 120, P2 Tel.: 603 193 711 www.radostfx.cz
Legerova 78, P2 Tel.: 222 240 035 www.bekaraok.cz
V Jámě 7, P1 Tel: 224 222 383 www.jamapub.cz
Štěpánská 61, P1 Tel: 296 236 513 www.lucerna.cz
Starbucks Coﬀee Malostranské náměstí 28, P1 Palladium, Náměstí Republiky 1, P1 Tel.: 222 314 024 www.starbucks.com Sphinx Na Příkopě 24, P1 Tel.: 222 222 703-6 www.sphinx.cz
POKER Text by Gordon Walker
The ﬁrst couple months that I started playing hold’em heads up on anything like a regular basis, I was getting my ass handed to me nearly every time by players that were, in my opinion, clearly inferior or even ones that I beat regularly in 5 and 6 handed play. What was immediately obvious to me was that these players who were consistently slamming me were extremely aggressive and extremely loose. I decided to take advantage of that by tightening up a bit more and making sure that every time I played a hand through I would have a big advantage in terms of starting hands. I also decided to call down much more liberally. And, I planned to do a bit more in the way of plays like check-raise bluﬀing the turn and reraising and capping with middle pair on the ﬂop. It didn’t work; if anything, my results got worse. Fuming at my bad luck, but ﬁnally convinced I must not be doing something right, I opened Sklansky and Malmuth’s Hold’em for Advanced Players (something of a hold’em bible) and reread the section on heads up play. Oops. I discovered that these super loose, super aggressive players were actually coming much closer to optimal play than I was, and, given time, it was likely I was going to fork over all my money if I continued to play them as tightly as I had been.
things in mind and play accordingly. First, there is only one opponent you have to get through to get to the pot, thus bluﬀing is almost always a good idea, and since your opponent knows this, rebluﬀing a bluﬀ and rerebluﬀing a rebluﬀ is essential to your success. The ﬂop is where you are going to either set up or make a good number of your moves. Anytime you have anything approaching 6 or more solid outs (two overcards, an open ended straight, a ﬂush draw, even an inside straight draw with a single overcard), you’ll want to consider check raising or raising and even reraising. You are not doing so because you necessarily are the favorite at this point, though you may well be, but because you do have signiﬁcant pot equity and you are trying to set up additional fold equity for later in the hand. Second, making big or even semi-big folds is a fool’s game. You don’t give up on an ace high hand because someone raises when a scare card hits on the turn. Nor do you give up on middle pair anytime, and very rarely should you lay down bottom pair—the chances are simply too good that your opponent is betting air. Third, you need to consistently evaluate the texture of the ﬂop and consider how likely it is to have given your opponent any piece of it. There are extremely dry ﬂops, which are ripe for stealing; there are draw heavy ﬂops which are often worth calling down with any kind of hand that has showdown value, so long as most of the draws (one is ok) don’t arrive; and then there are downright bad ﬂops, like three connected middle cards (7d, 9d, Th, for instance) that usually should be thrown away if they don’t help you. Lastly, watch your opponent extremely carefully as this is an information heavy environment, and any reads you get can readily be transformed into cash.
After reading that particular chapter my results rebounded signiﬁcantly. Since then, however, I’ve realized that even the play Sklansky and Malmuth recommend is too tight. Essentially, when you play heads up you need to realize that the blinds are going to eat you alive if you don’t play close to any two cards. Aside from this fundamental fact, you have to keep several other
If you are like the majority of players out there, heads up is an intimidating and frustrating form of poker to play, especially against solid, aggressive opponents. If you follow the above advice, you will do considerably better at what is actually one of the most rewarding and entertaining forms of hold’em. Good luck!
How to Out-Aggro an Aggro Heads Up
Tranzitdisplay Tranzitdisplay is a fairly recent addition on the Prague gallery map, a collaboration between the Display Gallery and the arts initiative Tranzit. The gallery, which hides behind the towering Tančící Dům and occupies the site of the St. Wenceslas baths, aims to provide a platform for contemporary arts and mixed media through exhibitions, lectures and screenings. Currently, the Laboratory, a “series of activities, of trial and errors” courtesy of Petr Babák’s (graphic studio) Laboratory is ongoing. The exhibition includes Tomáš Pospiszyl’s exploration of metal, an interactive study of Prague as seen from its trams by Kateřina Nováčková, and Petr Krejzek and Marek Pistora’s fond memories of the legendary magazine Živel.Where:
Tranzitdisplay Dittrichova 9/337, P2 www.tranzitdisplay.cz
EDITORIAL Think Again Issue #44 February – March 08
Publishing: Publisher & General Manager: Kateřina Quirenzová Advertising: firstname.lastname@example.org Oﬀice
Editor-at-Large: Gordon Walker
Vinohradská 102, 130 00 Praha 3
Arts and Culture Editor: Lucia Udvardyová
GSM: 777 133 514 email@example.com
Contributing Writers: Travis Jeppesen, Laura Baranik,
Tony Ozuna, Sinclair Nicholas, Tobias Moshövel
Contributing Photographers: Lucia Udvardyová,
MK ČR E 14587
Dravonfoto.cz, Jedi, Gonza, Becky Sapp, Jan Freiberg, Martin Polak, Marek Vogel
© No part of Think Again magazine may be reproduced without the prior permission of the
publisher. All opinions expressed herein belong to the
Patrik Svoboda /visualperfect.cz/
individual writers and do not necessarily reﬂect the
The font used is Botanika /suitcasetype.com/
views of the Think Again editorial staﬀ.