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  • Get ready for National Tequila Day!

    Thursday, July 24th marks National Tequila Day, and forget everything you know about the beverage. Those nasty old “tequilas” of yesterday were find for doing body shots, but tequila has become something of a luxury spirit while few were paying attention. Have you tried all the varieties of tequila? Can you tell the difference between blanco, joven, reposed, añejo and extra añejo?  If your local bar doesn’t have the stuff that will help you celebrate this important holiday, there are several bars that cater just to the tequila fan. There’s Aqua Rum and Tequila Bar in the MGM Grand Detroit Casino in Detroit, as well as Rojo Mexican Bistro in Novi, which offers more than 100 kinds of tequila, and Taqo Detroit, a new spot serving American-friendly Mexican fare and serving an astonishing variety of tequilas, more than 200 in all. Been waiting for a reason to drink up this south-of-the-border nectar? You got it. Guzzle responsibly.    

    The post Get ready for National Tequila Day! appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • DWSD to host water fair in wake of 15 day moratorium on Detroit water shutoffs

    In light of worldwide attention on its efforts to cut water service for thousands of Detroit residents, the Detroit Water & Sewerage Department said today it would host a Water Affordability Fair on August 2nd to explain options available to those facing financial hardship. DWSD officials said in a news release today the fair will be take place from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the department’s Eastside Customer Service Center at 13303 E. McNichols. The move came on the heels of growing pressure from opponents of the initiative and criticism from the U.S. bankruptcy judge overseeing Detroit’s Chapter 9 case. “Every customer that has come to DWSD with a legitimate financial hardship has not had their water service terminated,” said Darryl Latimer, DWSD deputy director, in a statement. “In cases where the water has been shut off, it’s been restored. We keep hearing at DWSD that there are poor people who are not receiving the assistance that they need, so we want to help them and we want to make it as easy as possible for the to receive that help. That’s why we created the Water Affordability Fair – ease of access and ease of assistance. We are here to […]

    The post DWSD to host water fair in wake of 15 day moratorium on Detroit water shutoffs appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Thrillist Names Detroit’s Motz’s Burgers Among Best in Nation

    The folks at Thrillist have again compiled their annual list of the nation’s best burgers, and Southeast Michigan, it seems, is well represented. Ranking alongside joints in major cities such as New York and L.A., is Detroit’s own Motz’s Burgers, hailed specifically for its Double Cheeseburger Slider. Via Thrillist: There’s nothing remarkable about the façade of this SW diner… it’s just a diner, like the hundreds of others in the D. The staff’s been there for years… and so have the regulars, who can’t get enough of Motz’s legendary smashed burgers. The formula’s nothing revolutionary: smashed, griddled patties with oozy cheese and onions that melt into the burger itself as it cooks. But it’s that unmistakable flavor of a well-seasoned griddle — which has also been here for years — that makes the difference. You can score big burgers with accoutrements, but this isn’t really a place to say things like “accoutrements”. Grab the old-school slider (the double cheeseburger one), and prepare for three perfect bites of Detroit’s finest. Flint’s Torch Bar and Grill also made the cut, most notably for its Deluxe Torch Burger with Bacon. Tucked away in an alley beyond the brick streets that used to mark […]

    The post Thrillist Names Detroit’s Motz’s Burgers Among Best in Nation appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • In what weird ways are you paying for school? MT wants to know!

    The Metro Times is looking for college students or graduates of Michigan colleges that used atypical means to pay for their schooling (i.e. sugar baby, selling underwear, military enrollment purely for school help, etc.). We are looking for personal anecdotes about the lengths you went to help pay for school, what came of it, your monetary situation, if the resource worked to get you through college and more. If you have utilized any one of these avenues, or know someone who has, please drop us a line at college@metrotimes.com.

    The post In what weird ways are you paying for school? MT wants to know! appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Kid Rock ordered to produce dildo in ICP sexual harassment lawsuit

    File under “WTF” — attorneys representing former Psychopathic Records publicist Andrea Pellegrini announced Monday that they have subpoenaed Kid Rock to produce a glass dildo as part of Pellegrini’s sexual harassment lawsuit against the Insane Clown Posse’s record label. Pellegrini claims the glass dildo was given to her by Psychopathic Records employee “Dirty Dan” Diamond as part of a larger culture of constant harassment in which she was called “bitch,” made the target of explicit sexual advances by Diamond and other co-workers, asked to procure automatic weapons for a photo shoot, and even encouraged to “deceive government investigators from the US Department of Labor.” On Friday, Diamond admitted under oath that he told Pellegrini that he had “a fat cock” and that he would “fuck the shit out of her.” The dildo, though, was “a work of art,” according to Diamond, and should not be considered sexual harassment. Why is Kid Rock involved? Diamond says when Pellegrini declined his dildo, he gave it to Kid Rock instead (presumably as a “work of art” and not a sexual advance). So now, according to court orders, Rock has 14 days to produce the glass dildo so the court can better determine if it is art or, well, a dildo. We will […]

    The post Kid Rock ordered to produce dildo in ICP sexual harassment lawsuit appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Henry Cavill and Amy Adams spotted at Pig & Whiskey

    Fans of the latest Superman franchise got a treat at Pig & Whiskey this weekend. Actors Henry Cavill and Amy Adams were spotted amid the crowds of the festival that took place in downtown Ferndale as well as a local restaurant. Cavill, who plays the man of steel in the upcoming Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice, stopped to chat with fans, take pictures, and sign autographs on Saturday afternoon and evening. He was wearing an inconspicuous black polo shirt as well as a signature Superman-style ‘do. Other fans spotted Amy Adams at Ferndale’s Imperial on Saturday night, some were even seated next to her at the restaurant’s communal benches. Adams reportedly was slightly annoyed that patrons continuously asked for her photo, but she smiled while cell phones snapped images nonetheless. The Zach Snyder film the two are starring in together is currently filming in Birmingham. Ben Affleck, who plays Batman, has been spotted around town with his wife Jennifer Garner recently as well. The closed movie set is under intense security and Brett Callwood attempted to infiltrate the filming last month, but was forced to give up his camera’s memory card, lest he make off with telling photos.

    The post Henry Cavill and Amy Adams spotted at Pig & Whiskey appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

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Music

The major Detroit players in all the key genres

Top of the Tops

Photo: Courtesy photo., License: N/A

Courtesy photo.

Battlecross, pictured here in full-on metal mode.


Indie

Jamaican Queens

Jamaican Queens pile on heavy rap beats, low-woozy-bass bursts, trundling 808 Rolands and cascades of spacey synth samples. Describing the JQ sound with his bandmate Adam Pressley, JQ-co-founder, guitarist, beat experimenter and producer Ryan Spencer tellingly repeats the phrase: “Fuck with it.” (Jeff Milo)

Also: George Morris, Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr., Julian Paaige, Flint Eastwood

Punk

Easy Action

The most recent band featuring Negative Approach frontman John Brannon, Easy Action is a far more straightforward rock ’n’ roll band in the classic Motor City sense than either the pummeling, primitive hardcore of NA or the brooding art-noise of the Laughing Hyenas. Guitarist Harold Richardson agrees. “It’s a rock ’n’ roll band,” Richardson says. “If you’re familiar with Detroit rock, it’s pretty much that. It’s named after the Alice Cooper record.”

Also: Glitter Trash, Wilson, Nice Hooves, the Meatmen

Metal

Battlecross

This Detroit power metal five-piece, consisting of guitarists Hiran Deraniyagala and Tony Asta, vocalist Kyle Gunther, bassist Don Slater and drummer Michael Kreger, formed in 2004 — though they didn’t really start finding their metal feet until 2007. Getting on Metal Blade, a label with a big reputation, certainly hasn’t hurt Battlecross. The Canton-based band has seen its reputation blossom, thanks to a series of big tours and a high-profile release of Pursuit of Honor. The following album, War of Will, saw them shift up another gear. 

Also: Axe Ripper, Black Dahlia Murder, Hazardhead, HafLife

Blues

Jimmy McCarty

Let us all praise Jim McCarty. Since the ’60s, his respective band tenures — Mitch Ryder & the Detroit Wheels, the Buddy Miles Express, Cactus, the Rockets, Mystery Train — have borne the twin marks of diligence and class. Among a certain generation of heavy-rock fans, he remains one of America’s most esteemed musicians. It’s telling, though, and more than a little bit vexing, that among the Motor City’s contemporary garage-punk scenesters who’ve elevated his peers Ron Asheton and Fred “Sonic” Smith to godhood, McCarty is a prophet without honor — and he remains a performing mainstay locally. (Fred Mills)

Also: Alberta Adams, the Muggs, Andre Williams, Thornetta Davis

Jazz

Hot Club of Detroit

With a nod to Django Reinhardt, the Hot Club of Detroit plays gypsy-flavored jazz while capturing the spirit of downtown Detroit. “A lot of bands that model themselves after the Hot Club of France are now working with drummers or percussion of some sort,” says HCOD rhythm guitarist Paul Brady. “We never have. And by doing that it forces us to think creatively about what we can do without it.” Fair enough.

Also: Dave Bennett, Sean Dobbins Organ Quartet, Detroit Pleasure Society

R&B

Kem

Kem is one of those rare musicians whose music really is a reflection of his life, whose melodies are just as much healing medicine to him as they are ear candy to you. Once faced with homelessness and addiction, Kem made music his crutch, then his cross. Then he offered it to us. “Throughout my life,” he says, “throughout my addiction, music was the only thing constant. I could absorb myself in that. When singing, you let all your inhibitions to the side. You’re in the groove.” (Khary Kimani Turner)

Also: Bettye LaVette, Melvin Davis, the Wrong Numbers, (a current version of) the Four Tops

Rap

Danny Brown

We here at MT headquarters have always loved Brown — his transparent raps of sex and streets, his dope self-parodies and skinny jeans, his bad teeth and brilliant rhymes, his cheap beats and can’t-turn-away comic allure. Dude’s a total original. The jovial rapper immediately gives an impression of a kid who’s used to things going his way. He’s a riot in person, and it’s all wrapped up neatly when he flashes his trademark, tooth-deficient grin. He’s got confidence, a sense of self-satisfaction, to spare. One thing is certain: He’s not afraid to take career chances, and things do, inevitably, so far, work out in his favor. (MT Staff)

Also: Slum Village, Mae Day, Passalacqua, Cold Men Young

Electronica

Matt Clarke

Clarke has been DJing for 17 years, since he was 17 years old. And he’s been involved in dubstep since 2005. He describes the music as, “typically, 140 beats per minute. It has a kick on the one and a snare on the nine. It’s heavy, bass-influenced and that’s pretty much the limitations to the genre. That’s what defines it. It came out of UK garage, and drum & bass. Everything comes from UK house and techno. It’s just one of the new offshoots of electronic music, focusing on that bass.” Dubstep in the Motor City is building a sizable following because of guys like Clarke and artists such as Serax, Calico, Laceration Selekta and Item9. 

Also: Carjack, Kevin Saunderson, Carl Craig, Jeff Mills

Pop

Electric Graffiti

These 15-year-old girls, who claim to be influenced by the Beatles and the Stones, though they also love Coldplay and Muse, say they often struggle to get gigs because bookers don’t always take them seriously. While that is kind of understandable, it’s a problem they likely won’t have for long. Word is getting out that they have the quirkiest pop show in town and, hey, if they have to play a few libraries and parks first, so be it.

Also: Lightning Love, Pewter Cub, Lettercamp, Duane the Brand New Dog

Country

Whitey Morgan & the 78’s

Strictly speaking, Morgan and his boys are from Flint, but they play all over the Detroit area. Morgan belts out songs in a voice from somewhere south of the Mason-Dixon line, and his band’s outlaw country sound is beautifully rugged. Detroit, long a destination for northbound Southerners, can produce a band that’s all-country, but in a very Detroit way.

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