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  • The Record Store Day Guide for metro Detroit

    This Saturday, audiophiles across the world will venture out to their favorite independent record stores in search of limited releases that quickly become collectors items. The third Saturday of April marks the fairly new international holiday Record Store Day. There are certainly dos and don’ts to know for RSD — like where to shop, and how to shop. That’s right, there is an etiquette to shopping on Record Store Day and violating that code makes you look like a real asshole. In my experience of celebrating Record Store Day, I’ve seen stores use a few different tactics as far as stocking the special releases. Some establishments will set up a table, somewhere in the store, where a few shoppers at a time can flip through records in a calm and contained manner. Other places will have a similar setup, with all the releases at a table, but shoppers ask the store employees for the releases they want. It’s like a record nerd stock exchange. This process gets loud, slightly confusing and incredibly annoying — this is where elbows start getting thrown. Then, there are places that put the releases on the shelves, usually categorized by size — twelve inches with the twelve inches, seven inches with the seven inches and […]

    The post The Record Store Day Guide for metro Detroit appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • City Slang: DEMF 2014 canceled

    The Detroit Electronic Music Festival, which was supposed to be making a triumphant return this year, has been canceled. A statement on the website says that the festival will be back in 2015. Back in November, Ford Field hosted an announcement party for DEMF, where it was revealed that a new DEMF festival would take place at Campus Martius Park in Detroit over the July 4th weekend. “I’m proud to be involved in the biggest and best electronic music festival in the world,” said Juan Atkins. “The future’s here. This is techno scene.” Not the immediate future, apparently. The DEMF people claim that the M-1 rail construction is partially to blame for the cancellation/12-month-postponement. Read the full statement here. Follow @City_Slang

    The post City Slang: DEMF 2014 canceled appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Metro Times wins heavy at the SPJ Awards

    Despite a turbulent 2013 which saw Metro Times change owners, move buildings and change editor twice, we picked up eight awards at the Society of Professional Journalists Awards on Wednesday evening. The big winner was Robert Nixon, design manager, who picked up a first place for “Feature Page Design (Class A)” for our Josh Malerman cover story, first for “Cover Design (Class A)” for our Halloween issue (alongside illustrator John Dunivant), and a second in that same category for our annual Lust issue. In the news categories our esteemed former news editor and current contributing writer Curt Guyette won third in “General News Reporting” and third in “Best Consumer/Watchdog” – both Class A – for the Fairground Zero and Petcoke Series respectively. Music & Culture Editor Brett Callwood placed third for his Josh Malerman cover story in the “Best Personality Profile (Class A)” category, and former editor Bryan Gottlieb picked up a couple of Class C awards for “Editorial Writing” and “Headline Writing” (third and second, respectively). We were also pleased to learn that our investigative reporter Ryan Felton won first place and an honorable mention for work published while at the Oakland Press. The MT ship is steady now […]

    The post Metro Times wins heavy at the SPJ Awards appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Detroit’s grand bargain still needs Lansing’s approval

    In this week’s Metro Times we took a look at the state legislature’s role in Detroit’s ongoing bankruptcy — in particular, how it must approve a $350 million pledge for the so-called “grand bargain” to remain intact. And, with last night’s announcement of a significant deal between the city and Detroit’s pension boards and retiree groups, the ball is Lansing’s court now. The new deal, first reported by the Freep, would cut general employees monthly pension checks by 4.5 percent and eliminate their cost-of-living increases. Police and fire retirees would see no cuts to monthly checks, while their cost-of-living increases would be reduced from 2.25 percent to 1 percent. Under the original offer, police and fire retirees cuts were as high as 14 percent, with general retirees as high as 34 percent, that is, if the groups rejected the “grand bargain,” an $816 million proposal funded by foundations, the state, and the DIA to shore up pensions. The sweeter deal for pensions, though, it must be noted, entirely relies on the state legislature approving $350 million for Detroit’s bankruptcy.  And while this broke after Metro Times went to press, that was the focal point of this week’s News Hits column — so, it’s worth repeating: The […]

    The post Detroit’s grand bargain still needs Lansing’s approval appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • City Slang: Local releases for Record Store Day on Saturday

    This Saturday, April 19, is Record Store Day, and there is plenty going on in metro Detroit and Michigan. Of special interest to us is Chiodos’ 7” single “R2ME2/Let Me Get You A Towel,” Mayer Hawthorne & Shintaro Skamoto’s 7” “Wine Glass Woman/In a Phantom,” Chuck Inglish & Action Bronson’s 7” “Game Time,” Chuck Inglish & Chance the Rapper’s 7” “Glam,” Chuck Inglish & Chromeo’s 7” “Legs,” Chuck Inglish, Mac Miller & Ab-Soul’s 7” “Easily,” James Williamson’s 7” “Open Up and Bleed/Gimme Some Skin,” Black Milk’s 12” “Glitches in the Break,” Mayer Hawthorne’s 10” “Jaded Inc.,” Wayne Kramer & the Lexington Arts Ensemble’s 12” “Lexington,” and best of all, Ray Parker Jr.’s 10” “Ghostbusters.” We wrote about James Williamson’s release this week. Go shop. Follow @City_Slang

    The post City Slang: Local releases for Record Store Day on Saturday appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • City Slang: Margaret Doll Rod to play EP release show in May

    Margaret Doll Rod will celebrate the release of her new EP, Margaret, with a show at PJ’s Lager House on Saturday, May 10. A statement reads, “The EP contains 3 new original songs and one Chrome Cranks cover with Italian actress Asia Argento singing background vocals. Margaret moved to Italy after the end of the Demolition Doll Rods where she still lives touring and performing festivals in Europe. The Dollrods were a Garage Rock force for over 20 years, opening for Iggy, Jon Spencer, The Scientist, The Monks and The Cramps. Margaret was the front person and principal songwriter for The Dollrods. Her chief musical foil was Danny Kroha, who joined the Demolition Doll Rods after the now legendary Gories called it quits. Margaret’s sister, Christine, on drums, rounded out the legendary trio. Margaret will do a special performance in the round that night with a 360 degree revolving stage and special guest DJ Adam Stanfel.” The bill will also feature the Stomp Rockets and the Volcanos. Follow @City_Slang

    The post City Slang: Margaret Doll Rod to play EP release show in May appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

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Savage Love

Presents for V.D.

Advice on sexy-gift shopping for your valentine

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Q: My name is Nancy, and I’m 19. My boyfriend’s name is Carl, we have been together for almost a year — our anniversary is actually Feb. 14! — and we have great sex frequently! I want to do something sexy for us on our anniversary. I plan on being with Carl for years to come, and I don’t want the sex to become monotonous. For a while, I’ve wanted to go to a sex store to purchase a few things to spice things up. I found a supportive, nonjudgmental friend who wants a few kinky things for her and her boyfriend. As you can imagine, we’re both excited to go on this adventure, but there’s just one problem: I have no idea what to buy! Neither does my friend! I was hoping you had a few essentials that my friend and I should know about or consider purchasing. My boyfriend and I have never used such things, but I’m positive that with your help making the right purchases, he will be all for it! Both my friend and I are college students, so we’re on a budget. I’m hoping to stay under $100! I just want to keep our relationship going strong and keep things interesting between us sexually. Thanks, Dan! —Needs A Naughty Connection, Yo!

A: One man’s scorching-hot sex toy is another man’s boring old roll of duct tape, NANCY. By which I mean to say…

Turn-ons are subjective. Not all women are to all men’s tastes, not all men are to all women’s, and not all sex acts appeal equally to all. Likewise, sex toys that I might buy for my partner — sex toys I might be inclined to mention when asked to recommend one or two — might not appeal to your boyfriend. I’ll go further than that: The sex toys that turn my husband on would either terrify or stump your boyfriend. Instead of buying the sex toys that turn me or my husband on, it would be better to go shopping and find a few things that turn you on. And instead of shopping with your friend, you might want to go shopping with your boyfriend.

But if you want to surprise your boyfriend — and that’s legit, and lots of people surprise their partners with sex toys on Valentine’s Day — I asked a few sex-toy merchants I like and trust for recommendations for you.

Jennifer Pritchett from Smitten Kitten in Minneapolis, Minn. (smittenkittenonline.com): “The variety of sexy gadgets and orgasm-promising gizmos can be overwhelming even for an experienced shopper. Don’t fret! Smart sex-toy shoppers use a process of elimination. First, commit to a budget that you are comfortable with. Second, ask yourself what you want to do with it. Penetration or no? Vibration or no? Unsure? Then go with the most versatile toy possible. Try out the vibrating dildo by Pleasure Works called the Right Spot. This affordable toy is great for g-spot or prostate stimulation, comes with a removable vibrator, and can be sterilized easily! The Right Spot will keep up with your changing sexual tastes for years to come!”

Claire Cavanah from Babeland in Seattle and New York City (babeland.com): “Nancy sounds like a great girlfriend — she’s taking responsibility for maintaining the hotness in her relationship. Bravo! She asked for the essentials, and that means vibrators and lube. We offer a kit called the Babeland Vibrator Starter Kit for $45. It consists of three vibrators: the Orchid G, which is great for, you guessed it, g-spot stimulation; the Silver Bullet, a standard vibe that has served as a gateway toy for many thousands of sex-toy lovers; and a Sonic Ring vibe, a stretchy cock ring that holds a vibrator on top of the penis or dildo for clit stimulation during penetration and gives the penis a good buzz too. These rate as good starter toys because they’re easy to use, they’re unobtrusive and friendly looking, and they deliver a lot of power. She should take home a hardy lubricant like BabeLube or Sliquid as well. Happy anniversary!”

Evy Cowan from Shebop in Portland, Oregon (sheboptheshop.com): “I could give Nancy some suggestions on a starter kit, but I think it’s much more fun to explore and decide for yourself what would work for you and your partner. Don’t be scared to pick things up and turn things on (that’s if the shop provides floor models like we do). It’s really important to be able to feel the material and what levels and types of vibrations different toys produce. Don’t be afraid to ask the staff questions — that’s what we’re here for. If the sex shop in your town is not very helpful when it comes to questions, then do some research before you go shopping. On our blog, we have a great guides section that gives advice, from choosing your first vibrator to detailed instructions on how to use a cock ring. Last but not least, make sure the toys you are buying are body safe — there are lots of toys out there that you do not want to be putting in your body. Check out the ‘Safe Sex Toy Shopping Guide’ at Badvibes.org to get the basics.”

Tynan Fox from Twin Cities Leather in Minneapolis, Minn. (facebook.com/TwinCitiesLeather): “The other contributors have given you some spectacular answers, but as Dan alluded to, don’t forget to think outside the box. Our advice: Don’t let the gas masks and floggers and cock locks (oh, my!) scare you away from leather/fetish shops or gear. It’s okay to start small and simple. Consider buying two blindfolds — one for each of you — and go at it while you’re both wearing them. The feeling of having sex with all your other senses heightened may just ignite a new kinky spark in your love life, and that would definitely fight off routine, monotonous sex. Who knows? Maybe one day, rather than thinking outside the box, you’ll be keeping your boyfriend’s cock locked inside one! But start small. You want to work your way up to the Fucksaw.”

Q: How long should a person wait to “get back out there” when his wife has been eaten by a zombie? Asking for a friend. —Sheriff Rick Grimes (via Twitter @RickGrimesATL)

A: Not too long — life is short, particularly during a zombie apocalypse, and your friend shouldn’t waste what little time he has left. And remember: During a zombie apocalypse, all relationships are rebound relationships. So your friend should get out there.

Confidential to everyone in or near Seattle: We’re doing a very special live taping of the Savage Lovecast for single people only at Seattle’s Neptune Theater on Feb. 14. Me and the Tech-Savvy, At-Risk Youth want to make sure that single people have as much fun on Valentine’s Day as coupled people. There will be free lap dances, a bondage demo with Twisted Monk, music courtesy of DJ TROUBLE, sex advice from me and Mistress Matisse, the Human Cupcake, and much more. Doors at 7 p.m., show at 8 p.m., 21+. A limited number of discounted advance tickets are available from Stranger Tickets (strangertickets.com). All other tickets can be purchased through Seattle Theater Group (tinyurl.com/savlov). Again: This event is for single people only. Lap dances! The Human Cupcake! Be there! (Of course we can’t stop couples from coming, as that would be discriminatory, and discrimination is always wrong, so coupled people are welcome to attend so long as they don’t gloat.)