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Morning Word: Lab Documents Improperly Classified

FBI seizes Tommy Rodella's scholarship funds

Morning WordWednesday, January 28, 2015 by Peter St. Cyr
Enjoy one more day of good weather before a winter storm rolls back into the state. Cooler temps and a chance of rain are expected Thursday and through the weekend.

It's Wednesday, January 28, 2015.

National security information was improperly released by a Los Alamos National Labs contract employee who misclassified documents at least half a dozen time and then failed to report the breaches, according to federal investigators.

Patrick Malone has the story. 

A week after former Rio Arriba Sheriff Tommy Rodella was sentenced to more than 10 years in prison for violating a driver's civil rights, the FBI has seized money from his scholarship fund bank account. The money, agents believe, was extorted from other motorists by Rodella and other deputies in lieu of being issued a traffic citation.

Read it at the Santa Fe New Mexican. 

Unemployment claims in New Mexico have dropped for the second month in a row. The state's unemployment rate, according to New Mexico Workforce Solutions, is 6.1 percent.

Read more at the Las Cruces Sun-News. 

Four City of Albuquerque employee union local chapters have struck a deal for new 18-month contracts and a 2.86 percent pay raise after state District Court Judge Alan Malott ordered mediated negotiations last fall. 

See more at ABQ Business First. 

Blue collar workers in Doña Ana County will also be getting a .17 cents an hour pay raise after a bigger 3 percent raise in 2014. 

Read it at the Las Cruces Sun-News. 

The US Securities and Exchange Commission wants former Santa Fe developer Charles Kokesh to pay a huge $35 million dollar fine for using company assets for personal use.
Kokesh was a colorful businessman who moved to Santa Fe in the early 1990s. In addition to his startup investment funds, he was active in the community, supported local charities and purchased the Santa Fe Horse Park, which he opened to public events such as polo, soccer and an annual Halloween festival.  
Last October, a federal jury found evidence to support all the financial abuse allegations.

Read it at the Santa Fe New Mexican.

A teenager claims the state isn't doing enough to protect air quality and now the New Mexico Court of Appeals has decided to consider Akilah Sanders-Reed's complaint.
She was one of dozens of youths under age 18 in all 50 states who filed similar petitions or lawsuits at the same time in an unusual campaign, arguing that under an old but rarely tested legal concept called the public trust doctrine, state governments have a responsibility to protect the atmosphere from greenhouse gases that contribute to climate change. 
Staci Matlock reports for the Santa Fe New Mexican. 

Children Youth and Families cabinet Secretary-designate Monique Jacobson told lawmakers yesterday that she's backing a department budget proposal supported by Gov. Susana Martinez that would result in fewer employees being hired to investigate child abuse cases. 

Read more online. 

At the same time, the the Tourism Department is also scaling back it's original $3.5 million marketing budget request to extend it's New Mexico True campaign to San Francisco.

Reporter Jessica Dryer has more. 

Albuquerque Mayor Richard Berry has responded to The New Yorker magazine's scathing story on the aggressive culture and use of deadly force by city cops.

See it at KOAT. 

Berry is also defending the city's position to ask for a independent investigator to review police shootings in the future. Berry says his administration isn't retaliating against District Attorney Kari Brandenburg, who filed murder charges against two officers in the shooting death of a homeless camper last April. 

More of the interview here. 

Big new highway construction and road projects may be ahead. Gov. Martinez is proposing $300 million for the work over several years.

Read Dan Boyd's story at the ABQ Journal. 

The former governor of Santa Ana Pueblo who had pled guilty to multiple charges involved with defrauding the US government and embezzlement in connection developing land at the old Albuquerque Indian School is expected to change is not guilty plea. 

Investigative Reporter Thom Cole has the scoop. 

A bill in the New Mexico Legislature would make it harder for drunk or high workers to be awarded workers' compensation insurance benefits.
Currently, when alcohol or drugs contributes to injury or death, the employee or survivors are eligible to receive 90 percent of workers’ compensation. Under the new legislation, that amount would be reduced by a minimum of 35 percent up to a maximum of 85 percent, depending on the degree to which the intoxication contributed to the injury or death.
Read more at the ABQ Journal. 

If you've following the Two Eagles balloon flight across the Pacific Ocean like us, it looks like they're on their way to a record for distance and endurance.

Track the historic flight online. 

3 Questions

with Laura Gonzales-Meredith

3 QuestionsTuesday, January 27, 2015 by Emily Zak

On Wednesday’s “Caves, Cribs and Cathouses: How Frontier Prostitution Helped Build the West,” Laura Gonzales-Meredith speaks about prostitution during the 19th century at the St. Francis Auditorium. A former worker at Fort Union National Monument, she now teaches history at Luna Community College in Las Vegas.

Tell me about your work on frontier prostitution.
This particular project is work that I’ve done on my master’s thesis. It started probably about nine years ago when I was working at Fort Union National Monument. I came across, with a colleague of mine, some articles in the archives regarding some prostitutes who had been publicly humiliated and run out of the fort at Fort Union. I just remember getting really intrigued by the story and the fact that it wasn’t being told.

What interested you about these sex workers?
These women led such fascinating and misunderstood lives. I think in society we have this common interpretation about them, and it generally tends to be negative—we fault them for their choices and decisions—or we romanticize their lives. It’s interested me to get to know them on a more personal level. They’re a little hard to pinpoint, and they’re all just so different.

What are breakthroughs you’ve had in your research?
I just started to see these women’s lives were influential in the growth of the West. In a lot of these small, primitive frontier towns, they’re dominated by male communities, and those communities can be pretty rough around the edges. And time and time again, these women are the ones that bring that element of civilization to it. They’re often the ones that stay back when there’s an epidemic of influenza or smallpox or something, so they’re acting as nurses. Madams are acting as surrogate mothers to these women who have been abandoned in the West or have lost their family for some reason…They’re making all of these contributions toward society, and yet in this society there’s not a place for them, and they get shunned.

High Flying, Adored

Make way for The Art of Flying

PicksTuesday, January 27, 2015 by Alex De Vore

From a home studio hidden within an aging barn outside Taos, David Costanza and Anne Speroni craft immense and ethereally lo-fi soundscapes as The Art of Flying.

With Costanza and Speroni at the core of the process and an ever-rotating cast of world-class musicians providing backup, a deftly prolific knack for poetic songwriting meets gorgeous musicianship.

A patchwork mélange emerges, culled from the highest high-points of rock ’n’ roll history with a Brit-pop slant and neo-psychedelic edge. Over the course of six records and one 10-inch LP, The Art of Flying has delved into and expanded upon the legendary foundations handed down from the likes of Leonard Cohen, Pink Floyd or even Bob Dylan, while driving their style forward via hints of shoegaze heroes like Belle and Sebastian or lyrical masterminds like Billy Bragg. This is music that isn’t afraid to take its time and slowly build toward more beautiful harmonies or subtly wistful melodies.

The pair has traveled the world over building experience along with musical prowess and, since their inception in 1998, steadily improved upon their painstaking formula with each newly recorded iteration. Their hard work and apparent encyclopedic awareness of the bits and pieces that make folky rock and psychedelia mesh well has culminated in the best of the bunch, the charmingly under-produced I’m Already Crying.

Don’t let that descriptor “under-produced” fool you, however, because this album is exactly where it needs to be and the lack of soulless bells or whistles lends itself perfectly to the heartfelt nature of the 10 brilliant tracks. You can experience them for yourself this Monday at the Jean Cocteau Cinema. Words like “essential” have been used by critics in the past, and you’d be hard-fought to think up a better word for how much you need to hear this band.

The Art of Flying
7-9 pm Monday, Feb. 2. $12-$20
Jean Cocteau Cinema
418 Montezuma Ave.,
466-5528

Street View

01.28.15

Street ViewTuesday, January 27, 2015 by SFR
Wait! No parking ticket for this guy?


Send your best shots to streetview@sfreporter.com or share with #SFRStreetview for a chance to win free movie passes to the CCA Cinematheque.

7 Days

01.28.15

7 DaysTuesday, January 27, 2015 by SFR
1

CAIRO MUSEUM RUINS KING TUT BEARD WITH GLUE

Project was headed by the same folks who did the Burro Alley tail repair.

2

ELDORADO RESIDENTS COMPLAIN ABOUT SOLAR PANELS

Henpecking one’s neighbors is the local pastime, after all.

3

JUDGE TELLS TOMMY RODELLA TO WORK ON ARROGANCE

Surely he’ll have time during his next decade of prison weightlifting.

4

ROBBER DRIVES STOLEN SMART CAR TO PECOS HOLDUP

Because blending in is essential for the successful stickup.

5

REIES LóPEZ TIJERINA DIES

Taking with him the hope that a small band of angry men can stop the federal government.

6

DEA BUSTS RUFINA REPAIR SHOP

Agents report they had “a lot of drugs” and few tools.

7

THE PANTRY RESTAURANT GETS NATIONAL ACCOLADES

Great. Now the line will be even longer this weekend.

Dirty Ol’ New York City

'A Most Violent Year' has elements of a great movie but falls short

OkTuesday, January 27, 2015 by David Riedel

JC Chandor makes solid movies. His feature debut, Margin Call, is the best movie about the 2008 financial crisis because it humanizes the bankers responsible for bringing the economy to its knees while simultaneously making them look like opportunistic assholes.

 

Chandor’s second feature, All is Lost, features Robert Redford in one of his best roles, as a lone sailor aboard a sinking boat in the Indian Ocean trying to survive calamity after calamity. Redford’s nearly wordless performance is perfect, and Chandor wrings from him the right balance of actor and movie star. The pacing is excellent and the happy ending well earned.

 

Now Chandor branches into darker territory. A Most Violent Year is set in New York City in 1981, one of the city’s grimmest years, crime-wise. Abel Morales (Oscar Isaac—this guy is the real thing) is a mostly honest businessman trying to take his oil supply business from rinky-dink-plus to on-the-verge-of-international. As the movie opens, he puts down a 40 percent deposit on a riverside property that will allow him to greatly expand.

 

Abel has 30 days to come up with the rest of the money, and needless to say, things don’t go as planned. His delivery trucks keep getting hijacked on New York’s rough city streets; a federal prosecutor (a soft-spoken but forceful David Oyelowo) is about to indict him; and his wife/accountant Anna (Jessica Chastain) is the daughter of a Mafioso who wants to deal with every problem the business has through illegal means.

 

Sounds like the set-up for a great crime story, right? If only. Chandor makes the bold choice of letting the words in A Most Violent Year speak louder than the actions. Sometimes it works; when Abel calls together all the other oil barons in the city to ask them to quit stealing from him, the scene feels a lot like Vito Corleone’s warning to the heads of the five families in The Godfather.

 

But there are places where the movie falls apart. There’s a constant threat of physical violence—this is dirty ol’ New York City, after all—that rarely comes to fruition. One can admire Chandor’s restraint, but it feels as if, like his main character, he’s taking the high road for the sake of taking the high road. It’s feasible that Chandor is suggesting the threat of violence is even worse than violence itself. In its own way, A Most Violent Year shows the fallout on the human psyche of terroristic threats.

 

Unfortunately, that leaves much of the movie flat. There are raised voices here and there, but there’s such a veneer of control and cool—Abel is largely unflappable—that it leaves the ending in little doubt.

 

Plus, Chastain's character is problematic. It’s not that Chastain isn’t believable as the tough Brooklyn-bred Mafia kid. It’s just that her role is underwritten enough that it becomes cliché. How many times can she tell Abel he needs to be a man before it sounds like a stock phrase Chandor lifted from a different gangster story? Problems aside, A Most Violent Year is highly watchable; it’s just that when you’re done, you may not feel like you’ve been told the whole story.

 

A MOST VIOLENT YEAR

Directed by JC Chandor

With Isaac, Chastain and Albert Brooks

UA DeVargas 6

R

125 min.

Small Bites

Eat at Midtown Bistro and El Farol

Small BitesTuesday, January 27, 2015 by SFR
Joy Godfrey

Midtown Bistro

Brunch, a much-debated topic among stand-up comedians and no one else, is great, and Midtown Bistro knows how to do it right. Don’t let the elegant, understated décor fool you into thinking that you’ll be subjected to thin streaks of food, artfully clarified of all substance. The Bistro offers elegant interpretations of the classics that will leave you happy, full and ready to hibernate. Take the waffle ($12) option for example, where every element is perfectly balanced, from the fluffy, flavorful waffle, so much better than that IHOP nonsense, to the tweak of heaping it not only with bacon and syrup, but also cottage cheese and dried fruits. There are plenty of brunch staples like the omelet and steak and eggs ($11-$16). Then there are the more unusual options like the gluten-free (...really?) calamari appetizer ($9). The coffee ($2) is a little weak, the mimosas ($8) are just right, the service is superb and there’s no reason to miss out on this excellent fare.

-Ian MacMillan

901 W San Mateo Road, Ste. A, 820-3121
Lunch and dinner Monday-Saturday; brunch Sunday.
midtownbistrosf.com


Joy Godfrey

El Farol

Sitting on the front porch, perched in a tall chair and soaking in the sights of Canyon Road while noshing on plate after plate of flavorful tapas at El Farol is undoubtedly one of the quintessential authentic Santa Fe moments. Whether you’re visiting for the first time or the tenth, or you’re a local craving a night out, having a meal at the place that bills itself as the city’s oldest restaurant and cantina is worth it. Choosing just five tapas to start, however, can be a difficult task, so asking your knowledgeable waiter to make suggestions about the myriad choices is helpful. But for lunch with a friend, the five for $38 deal is spectacular. The flash-fried avocado with pico de gallo and lime yogurt is remarkable, and the gambas al ajillo, four sautéed garlic shrimp in a spicy red sauce, are finger licking. There’s also Spanish goat cheese and chorizo, and flamenco and other nightly entertainment to boot.

-Julie Ann Grimm

808 Canyon Road, 983-9912
Lunch and dinner daily.
elfarolsf.com



Hungry for more?

For more reviews like this, pick up our 2015 Restaurant Guide or check it out online.

NM Moderne

New exhibit at the O’Keeffe Museum celebrates state-made and inspired art

Arts ValveTuesday, January 27, 2015 by Enrique Limón

You’d think that the staff at the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum would be still in a celebratory mood after last November’s record-breaking sale of the iconic painter’s “Jimson Weed, White Flower No. 1,” perhaps driving up in their Bentleys to line the gallery walls with gold leaf. But, as the museum’s Cody Hartley is swift to point out, it’s business as usual at the Johnson Street cultural institution.

“That money will all be set aside for future art acquisitions, so I’m actively looking at the market. We’d like to fill some gaps in our collection and start expanding our holdings,” Hartley tells SFR. “It’s exciting. I’m working with dealers, talking to collectors, finding out what’s out there and what would make sense for us to add to our collection.”

Not resting on laurels, on Friday, the museum is set to unveil Modernism Made in New Mexico, an sublime patchwork of 15 artists who, like O’Keeffe, were deeply inspired by New Mexico, its people, traditions and jaw-dropping vistas.

Thomas Hart Benton’s “Train on Desert,” oil on canvas board
©TH Benton and RP Benton Testamentary Trusts/UMB Bank Trustee/Licensed by VAGA, New York, NY

“Some of these we have ownership stakes in and some are just loans,” Hartley says of the museum namesake’s works that fleck the exhibit. He’s standing in the gallery where the pieces are gingerly being set up by gloved hand, flashes of provenance peering as the paintings are handled.

“The point is made visible,” Hartley, the former assistant curator of paintings at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts, says of the flow from one painting to the next. “You’ve got someone like O’Keeffe to the left and Raymond Jonson on the right doing really radical, new things.”

Rediscovering renowned talents and presenting their New Mexico-inspired works, which at time stray from the rest of their oeuvre, Hartley says, was key.

“It’s pretty fascinating,” he remarks, as a John Marin goes up. “One of the observations is how New Mexico really changes what artists do. It changes the way they work, and not just their subject matter—not just painting New Mexico scenes and subjects—but also the way they paint, the rejection of the more traditional, representational, romantic ideals of the past is gone and you’ve got something increasingly abstract and flat.

O’Keeffe’s 1940 “Bear Lake, New Mexico,” oil on canvas.
© Georgia O’Keeffe Museum
“They’re getting rid of this notion of depth and perspective,” he continues, his words echoed in pieces like “Train on the Desert” by Thomas Hart Benton and O’Keeffe’s own “Black Place, Grey and Pink.”

Exploring how the state influenced this radical new direction is an overarching theme. It also plays into the notion that New Mexico is known for trapping these creative types who arrive here and never leave. “Someone like John Sloan, Jonson and O’Keeffe, of course, move here permanently and make [the state] a significant part of their lives. But then you have others, Marin for example, that visit for a summer or two, get it out of their system and don’t come back.”

The state, he notes, had a lasting effect on the likes of Marsden Hartley, whose sweeping, post-visit pastel landscapes are in the show. “He is the most modern artist that comes to New Mexico when he arrives in 1918. He doesn’t actually paint that much while he was here. It’s the subsequent decade that he starts painting these recollections of New Mexico, so it’s been working in his mind this whole time and takes a while for it to come out in painted expression.”

The move to kick off what is sure to be a banner year with the sui generis group exhibit, the director of curatorial affairs explains, was a well-thought-out one, given they’re focusing on modernism “in a significant way” in 2015.

Later, on a quick coffee break, away for the sound of hammers on nails and hydraulic scissor lifts being raised, Hartley would reflect on the timelessness associated with the so-called Mother of American Modernism.

“I think she’s got incredible durability. Her method of painting struck this perfect balance between being very easily read, it’s very legible, but at the same time, it’s got this amazing complexity to it, so it pulls you in and rewards time and close-looking.”


Modernism Made in New Mexico

Starting Friday, Jan. 30
and on display through April 30
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum
217 Johnson St.,
946-1000

Wingin’ It

Because hot sauce is for Super Sunday, suckers

Food WritingTuesday, January 27, 2015 by Rob DeWalt

When I was a much younger lad, the voracious consumption of Buffalo-style hot wings was one of the few ways I thought I could assert my burgeoning manhood in front of those I wished to impress. You see, lifting weights was out of the question the minute I discovered they could actually be heavy, and lumbersexuals hadn’t been invented yet. Even if they had been, the only “beard” I was capable of producing back then was a shy goth girl named Stephanie.

I’m still a wing fan, I have given up on manhood and I have learned to tame the heat-seeking beast within for the sake of what is left of my stomach lining. I will, on occasion, hit up The Ranch House for some of chef Josh Baum’s lusty smoked mango-chile wings, stop by Cowgirl BBQ for a plateful of extremely habanero-forward Wings of Fire (more of a gimmick than a yummy gimme, honestly) or feast on a few of Second Street Brewery’s green chile-garlic flapper joints. Beyond that, I prefer the DIY wing approach.

Apparently there is a national sporting event coming up in a few days that often calls for the hearty shoving of chicken wings into one’s beer-massaged gullet. But they don’t have to be acid reflux-inducing gut bombs, people. In an effort to bring the oil content to a less frightening level, allow me to share three of my favorite variations that are roasted, not deep-fried. Two of the recipes—Asian coffee wings and chokecherry-chile wings—call for roasting plain wings before adding a powerful flavor denouement, while the Tandoori seasoned wings require a little (or a lot of) marinating time before cooking.


For the pre-roasted wing recipes:

(serves 3-5 as a snack)

24 large chicken wing pieces (wingettes and drumettes), skin-on

2 tablespoons vegetable oil or peanut oil

Salt and pepper to taste

Defrost chicken pieces if necessary. Preheat oven to 475 degrees. Line two baking sheets with aluminum foil or parchment paper. Pat wing pieces very dry with paper towels. In a bowl, toss wing pieces with oil to coat evenly. Space 12 wing pieces evenly on each baking sheet, meaty side up. Score each wing top three times with a sharp knife. (This will help the wings grab the basting sauces and facilitate more even cooking.) Roast wings on the middle oven rack until almost cooked through, about 20 minutes. Remove wings, baste well with sauces, and return to oven to roast for another eight to 10 minutes (times vary). Pour any remaining sauces over wings after plating. Serve with crudité and your favorite complementary dips, if desired.


Chokecherry Chile Basting Sauce:

1 teaspoon vegetable oil

2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

¼ cup yellow onion, thinly sliced

2-3 tablespoons Dixon Caribe or other crushed red New Mexico chile flakes

3 tablespoons white wine

1 cup chokecherry jam (available from Pat Montoya’s Family Orchard stand and Santa Fe Farmers Market) or other cherry jam

Heat oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Sweat onions and garlic with chile flakes in medium-hot oil for four minutes. Add wine to saucepan; reduce liquid for three minutes. Add jam to pan, reduce heat to low and cook until jam is completely dissolved. Baste wings toward the end of roasting.


Asian Coffee Basting Sauce:

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 teaspoon dark sesame oil

3 cloves garlic, finely chopped

1/8 cup yellow onion, thinly sliced

1 tablespoon fresh ginger, finely chopped

½ cup sweet rice cooking seasoning (aji-mirin)

2 ½ cups strong coffee (day-old is fine)

¼ cup tamari or soy sauce

½ cup black treacle (dark molasses)

½ cup light brown sugar

1 piece star anise

1 makrut lime leaf (optional, for astringency and aroma)

1 tablespoon Szechuan peppercorn, ground (optional, for spiciness)

Heat oil to medium-high in a large saucepan. Sauté garlic, onions and ginger for four minutes. Deglaze with aji-mirin. Add remaining ingredients and reduce, stirring occasionally, until slightly sticky to the touch when cooled on the back of a wooden spoon, up to 30 minutes (times vary). Baste wings toward the end of roasting.


Tandoori Seasoned Wings With Cucumber-Mint Sauce:

(serves 3-5 as a snack)

¼ cup dried red chile pods (chile de árbol works well)

2 tablespoons whole coriander seeds

1 teaspoon whole cardamom pods

1 teaspoon whole cumin seeds

1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns

½ teaspoon whole cloves

1 tsp whole fenugreek seeds

1 stick whole cinnamon stick

¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg

¼ teaspoon ground turmeric

1 ½ teaspoons minced fresh ginger

1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic

2/3 cup sweet paprika (or enough to achieve your desired color)

1-2 tablespoons cayenne pepper (optional)

2 cups whole or lowfat plain yogurt

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

24 large chicken wing pieces (wingettes and drumettes), skin-on

Salt and pepper to taste

Lightly toast the first eight ingredients in a medium sauté pan, shaking the pan constantly, until the aroma is prominent, about five minutes. Cool completely. Grind cooled mixture in a spice blender. Add the chile/spice mixture to a large, resealable freezer bag with remaining wet and dry ingredients, mixing well. Score wing pieces on meaty side with a sharp knife. Add scored wing pieces to bag, coat evenly with marinade, seal bag and marinate two to eight hours in fridge. Roast wings on parchment-lined baking sheet on middle rack at 475 degrees until cooked through, about 30 minutes. May also be cooked outdoors on a medium-hot grill if turned frequently. Serve with cucumber-mint sauce.


Cucumber Mint Sauce:

(makes about 2 cups)

1 cup plain yogurt

½ cup cucumber, peeled and finely chopped

1 tablespoon fresh lime juice

¼ cup finely chopped fresh mint or 3 tablespoons crumbled dried mint

Salt and pepper to taste

Blend all ingredients in a nonreactive bowl, cover and refrigerate at least two hours. Serve cold. Touchdown.

Whose House?

The rise and rise of Santa Fe house shows

Music FeaturesTuesday, January 27, 2015 by Alex De Vore

The concept of the house show carries with it a tremendously long and rich history dating back to forever the hell ago when the wealthy would invite performers into their front rooms and parlors to sing, dance and generally entertain. Granted, while venues, bars and other such public spaces usually tend to be the performer’s first choice, there’s a proud tradition of folks both young and old who decide to open their homes, basements and/or garages to the masses to produce/promote DIY musical events for little reason beyond that it’s awesome. Santa Fe itself has boasted no small number of house show spaces from the legendary (and sadly defunct) Alamo and Castle Rock Skull—though the latter was technically a storage unit—to new and exciting domiciles like Radical Abacus.

“I think that house venues tend to start out more exclusive, so once you hear about it and start going you feel a little special,” Megan Burns, formerly of homespun venue Meg’s House says. “It’s like getting into a club or a secret society.”

Meg’s House was founded in the basement of, well, Meg’s house and filled an important void following the demise of the original Warehouse 21. There, the tenants played host to both touring and local bands and would often create memorable, one-of-a-kind experiences. And nary a violent or legal issue arose because, according to Burns, “Even the biggest wasteoids respect that it’s someone’s house and are kinder to the space and the people.”

So cool, in fact, was the space that arts collective Meow Wolf can easily trace its roots back to the minimally excellent happenings inside that basement. These days, Meg’s House is home to The Pig Pitt, unofficial HQ for up-and-coming metal act Sleeptaker.

“House shows are so cool because it’s like music for the right reasons,” tenant/Sleeptaker guitarist Alex Monasterio says. “It’s not for money, it’s for the sake of playing, and the room has been full every time we’ve played.”

That’s a lot more than most venues around here can say, and it’s actually pretty neat that one house has facilitated two completely unrelated musical spaces.

But anyway, the list goes on! Just a short drive from The Pig Pitt you’ll find the Pink Haüs, a small garage space run by Santa Fe University of Art and Design student/musician Caitlin Brothers.

“The best house shows I’ve ever been to have all been in Santa Fe,” Brothers says. “Something about that sort of musical/social environment just vibes here, [and] the response gets better all the time…generally I can expect a decent crowd even on weeknights, and people have been more generous with the donations lately, so I’ve been able to give touring bands a lot more than I used to.”

A little bit further down the road in the burgeoning Siler Road area sits Radical Abacus, a massive warehouse space that’s actually attached to none other than the recently SFR-approved Dave Cave. Each serves different cross-sections of young music lovers, with the Dave Cave acting as host to the most brutal of metal bands while the relatively new Radical Abacus tends to err on the rock/indie/experimental side of things.

“Lots of people look around here and claim nothing is going on, but if you look into it and communicate, there really probably is something going on,” David Ahern-Seronde of the Dave Cave says. “It’s necessary to have house shows to keep the scene alive.”

But if these places are so important, why aren’t we printing addresses and phone numbers? Well, to put it simply, it would suck if these places were ruined for all by a small minority of jerks. Additionally, the ultimate legality of house shows is a murky area, and the last thing we need is to make things harder for these people who would welcome bands and fans with such open arms. The best thing one can do if they really want to be in the know is to start following these bands and people online. Hell, do a little detective work. And should you find these places and decide to get involved, do us all a favor and be cool…it’ll totally be worth it.

Morning Word: Lab Documents Improperly Classified
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