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SPACE AND A DREAM

Culture

your guide to opening up a diy venue from the women who would know.

When the Brooklyn arts space Silent Barn reopened late last year (a year and a half after getting shut down by the Department of Buildings) as a legit, D.O.B-compliant, beer-and-wine-licensed venue, the once-underground DIY scene was lifted, like a pliant crowd-surfer, into the national spotlight. While the attention bolstered a support network spurred by the closure (and subsequent robbery) of the old space--many of the articles painted the scene as a boys' club, which regular patrons of the lovingly curated events know is not the case. NYLONmag.com organized a conversation moderated by Sara Marcus, author of Girls to the Front: The True Story of the Riot Grrrl Revolution; hosted by Silent Barn's Katie McVeay, Ginny Benson, and Larissa Hayden; and attended by Rachel Nelson of Secret Project Robot, Alaina Stamatis of Ho_se, Nora Dabdoub of Shea Stadium, and Nicki Ishmael of Dead Herring to find out how these amazing ladies deal with intrusive authorities, shake off skeevy rock-show dudes, avoid toilet paper shortages, and, above all, put on awesome shows.

Sara Marcus: I'm curious about whether there has been an actual shift, or if this is just one of those moments of the media paying attention to something that's been happening all along--and will keep happening once they're gone.
Katie McVeay: When the press really picked up, all they wanted to talk about was all the shit that had happened in the past. No one wanted to talk about what we were doing, who was here now, what kind of art we were working on--none of that.

Ginny Benson: Everyone just wanted the real shut down story.

SM: So has getting legal status for your operations changed things?
GB: It's actually this amazing feeling of comfort that if the cops come in and there are people drinking, it's like, 'Hey, we are supposed to be doing this, it's totally fine, please get out.' On the other hand, we put up this amazing sculpture, but maybe it's not D.O.B. compliant, and everyone's like, 'Oh, maybe we should take it down.' And that sucks--that absolutely sucks.

Larissa Hayden: It's kind of a two-minded thing right now, where you have this mentality of being very much about what you're making and the kinds of art and music and the performances that are going on and then also the mentality of being legal. So I haven't sensed at all that it's affected the curation, but you just have to be really mindful about how to preserve the space.

GB: People complain about how it's not very punk to sell beer, but we're under a magnifying glass right now, and the whole point of us moving to this new space and doing it right is for sustainability and longevity. I'm not gonna fuck it up just because you want to bring a PBR. Deal with it.

RN: Secret Project Robot went through that when we got our not-for-profit status. I was like, 'Do we all have to suffer and be poor forever? Can we not try to make this happen and make it work a little bit?' We're all still suffering and poor anyways.

SM: What are some things that visitors take for granted; elements that are invisible but that make the spaces happen?
Nicki Ishmael: How much organization it takes to get four to five bands together on one night, sharing gear. Setting up the show, getting people to come, getting the beer, getting the liquor beforehand. The lighting, clearing out the space--there are so many things that are behind the scenes. It's not just, come, stand here, and watch the band play, and, like, throw up in my bathroom.

Alaina Stamatis: My motto is, 'Make it look as though you've thought of everything,' but when you do that, people don't think about anything you've done, and they boss you around and then pass out on the sidewalk.

GB: People come to a party and don't realize that this is your home--that this is your baby.

SM: Do you feel like your experience as women in making DIY things happen is particular in any way?
KM: When Silent Barn reopened in this location, a guy from a national newspaper spent at least a month talking to different people, he came to a show, he came to our opening night, he sat down with a bunch of people and got all these amazing quotes. Ginny and I talked to him and he talked to a bunch of women.

GB: He talked to mostly women.

KM: He talked to mostly women, and the print version of the article came out and it didn't have any mention of a single woman.

SM: Does that extend beyond these articles?
LH: I would say in general women are under-represented and when they are represented it's in a certain way. With social media, you also have these anonymous personas like Brooklyn Vegan commentators--people who default to a lot of really base, sexist comments because there is no accountability there.

RN: We had to shut down a New Year's Eve party because there were people stealing purses, there was a fistfight on the stage, and there was a group of lesbians who punched a group of drag queens.

AS: Holidays are hard. [Laughs.]

RN: But I was standing up on the stage, like, 'Everybody, you have to get out. This has gotten out of control.' I had $400 in my pocket, just handing out refunds, because it wasn't about money. But some guy was standing in front of the stage just mocking me, calling me a coward and a bitch. I bet he wouldn't have done that if one of the guys was standing up here.

SM: Given all of this, it's kind of amazing that so many women stay involved anyway. What keeps you in the game? What do you love about it?
Nora Dabdoub: There are so many people who are the opposite. You're like, 'Really, you noticed that there's always toilet paper in the bathroom?' I think they're what sustains the community--especially the people who come to shows even if they aren't familiar with the bands. That's always bigger than the guy who tells you to suck his balls.

NI: I think negativity can also be a good push. If someone's like, 'Oh, it's a girl booking the show so it's gonna suck,' and then you have a really fucking good show, it's like, 'Ha, you thought it was going to suck, but I'm really good at this, and you have terrible shows and your band sucks!' Also, as a photographer, I'll walk up to a guy and say, 'Hey, I took pictures of your band. Do you want to see them?' I've had dudes definitely assume that I'm hitting on them, or they think I'm a groupie. But I'm not going to stop because that guy's a dumb-ass.

LH: In a way, being a girl is kind of an advantage because you learn really early on how to brush that stuff off and how to ignore the comments that aren't necessarily made at you but are made in anger or ignorance. At least with Silent Barn, there are so many good vibes and just so many fucking awesome chicks here. It's such a cool opportunity to be around so many like-minded people.

SM: Would it be saying too much to suggest that this is a golden age for DIY in Brooklyn?
AS: I hope not. I hope that it can go on forever and keep improving. Calling it the golden age suggests a fall. Things are better than ever, but I would like things to continue to progress positively.

SM: What advice would you give to people reading this article who want to start booking shows of their own and who dream of having a space?
AS: All you need is space and a dream.

GB: Use what you've got, and just go for it. Ask your friends' bands to play, invite your friends over. Nothing should be able to hold you back. We are representing every type of venue here--from the loft to mixed-use to a basement. You can do it anywhere. You don't need any experience. Find a church basement, a garage, a firehouse, a Knights of Columbus.

NI: Even if you live in a tiny little town, there is somebody else in that tiny little town that wants to make music and wants to be creative. You can find them and make your own little scene.

Silent Barn is hosting a conversation on women and the DIY scene Wednesday, May 29 at 8pm!

Screenshot via YouTube

The band shared details about their new St. Vincent-produced album that will drop "you into the world of catastrophe"

Sleater-Kinney just shared more information about their St. Vincent-produced album and dropped a new single.

Per Billboard, Sleater-Kinney revealed that their new album, which they've been teasing since early this year and will be their first since No Cities To Love from 2015, will be called The Center Won't Hold. It's due out on August 16 via Mom + Pop Records. "We're always mixing the personal and the political but on this record, despite obviously thinking so much about politics, we were really thinking about the person—ourselves or versions of ourselves or iterations of depression or loneliness—in the middle of the chaos," Carrie Brownstein said in a statement. Corin Tucker further noted that the new album will "[drop] you into the world of catastrophe that touches on the election."

Janet Weiss noted that the band will "explore a different sound palette" with this album, and pointed to St. Vincent as the reason behind it. She said that St. Vincent "has a lot of experience building her own music with keyboards and synthesizers so she could be our guide to help us make sense of this new landscape and still sound like us."

To satiate us until then, the band released a lyric video for new single, "The Future Is Here," which is very grungy. Bump it, below.

Sleater-Kinney - The Future Is Here (Official Lyric Video) www.youtube.com

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FROM THE WORLD WIDE WEB

This is so satisfying!

Even Jon Snow knows just how unsatisfying the final season of Game of Thrones was, and he's ready to apologize. Well, a deepfake of him is at least. A heavily-edited version of Snow's speech from the fourth episode—just before the bodies of those lost in the Battle of Winterfell get burned—now features Snow apologizing for the conclusion of the show and lighting the script on fire.

"It's time for some apologies. I'm sorry we wasted your time," Snow begins. "And I know nothing made sense at the end. When the Starbucks cup is the smallest mistake, you know you fucked up! We take the blame. I'm sorry we wrote this in like six days or something," he adds, before signaling to his peers to light the script with torches and "just forget it forever." "Fuck Season 8," he says before the pages begin to crackle and burn.

If there were more lines left to alter, we would have loved to see Snow also tackle how messy Brienne of Tarth and Jaime Lannister's story line ended up, as well as Bran's kingship, Cersei's boring demise, and the water bottle appearance.

Watch the entire deepfake and try to heal the wounds left by HBO below.

BREAKING: JON SNOW FINALLY APOLOGIZED FOR SEASON 8 youtu.be

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Photo by Darren Craig

It premieres today, exclusively via NYLON

In LP's song "Shaken," the most recent single from her 2018 record Heart To Mouth, she tells the story of seeing her lover out with someone else—ouch. Today, exclusively on NYLON, she releases a cheeky animated music video that pokes fun at the song's heightened drama and perfectly demonstrates all the angst that comes with falling hard for someone.

"She looks at you like I used to/ And I'm just sitting in the corner sh-sh-shaken," LP sings, as the visual—with art by Maayan Priva—depicts the singer hanging out in a bar, watching the girl she likes meet up with another girl. Despite the situation's inherent drama, "Shaken" is less of a ballad and more of an upbeat bop. LP told us she loves the way "this little video captures some of the fun of the song, and its inherent comical anxiety." Sure, heartbreak isn't that funny, but our (sometimes) overly dramatic reaction to it kind of is.

"'Shaken' feels like a bit of a wild card on this record," LP says. "It's the closest I've come to writing a musical, which I hope to do one day." We heartily endorse this idea: Please, LP, give us the queer jukebox musical we crave.

Until that day comes, though, you can watch the music video for "Shaken," below.

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Photo courtesy of Sony Pictures.

This cameo has the Beyhive buzzing

I went to see Men In Black: International alone. Which would have been fine if it wasn't for the shock I received when I saw two specific characters on the screen. Unable to keep it to myself, I shared a curious look with the stranger next to me, who was obviously thinking the same thing as me. "Is that them...?" I whispered first. "I think… so," she replied. Then the two men in question started to dance, and we were both sure: "Yep, that's them."

It was Laurent and Larry Nicolas Bourgeois, better known as Les Twins. Fans of Beyoncé will recognize the duo as the talented brothers who often accompany her on tour and in music videos. In Men In Black: International, the two of them play shapeshifting entities—they're more like energy forces than aliens—who pursue Tessa Thompson's and Chris Hemsworth's characters throughout the duration of the film. The twins' ability to manipulate their bodies in ways that are graceful and otherworldly really helps sell them as extraterrestrials and is fun to watch.

So if Thompson in a suit or Hemsworth shirtless weren't enough motivation, here's another reason to go see it. If you look close, you can see them in the trailer below.

MEN IN BLACK: INTERNATIONAL - Official Trailer www.youtube.com

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Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for The Met Museum/Vogue

"I am honored to share this bonding experience with my own daughter"

In a heart-warming Instagram photo, Serena Williams shares the history of hair braiding and the importance of the tradition. The tennis player shared a photo of herself braiding her daughter Olympia Ohanian's hair and spoke about how "honored" she was to be able to "add another generation" to the tradition of the practice.

The photo shows Williams attentively braiding her daughter's hair while Olympia smiles, obviously loving the experience. Williams noted that hair braiding was created by the Himba people in Namibia, Africa, and that "we have been braiding our hair for centuries." "In many African tribes braided hairstyles were a unique way to identify each tribe," she continued.

Williams pointed out that braiding is a bonding experience. "People would often take the time to socialize," she wrote. "It began with the elders braiding their children, then the children would watch and learn from them. The tradition of bonding was carried on for generations, and quickly made its way across the world."

Williams closed her post with a sweet message about her daughter, saying that she's "honored to share this bonding experience" with her.

See the post, below.

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