Halloween

The Performant: This is Halloween

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Nothing quite says “Happy Halloween” like an evening full of splatter gore and general mayhem, and this year there were several options to choose from, including an interactive zombie apocalypse battle royale at Chez Poulet and a multi-level haunted house extravaganza at the Old Mint which promised similarly to let patrons “live the horror movie,” hopefully sans actual evisceration of ticket-holders, but these are dangerous times we’re living in. On the theatrical front we had the Thrillpeddlers strutting their creepy stuff onstage at the Hypnodrome (through Nov. 23), buckets of blood and teen angst at Ray of Light’s Carrie: The Musical, and a brief, yet enGROSSing run of the thematically-appropriate Grand Guignol, co-produced by Pianofight.

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Haunted! Halloween and Day of the Dead events and parties

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Oh hi, spooky. It's the Bay Area's favorite time of year, with both candy and muerte on our minds. here's a handy guide to what's going down on Hallow's Eve and boo-weekend.

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Heads Up: 7 must-see concerts this week

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Ready to get weird? Naturally, as this is the week of All Hallows Eve (i.e. the best time of the year), the shows you must see are downright spooky: The Flaming Lips' Halloween Blood Bath, Maya Jane Coles at Freaky Friday, the Hellraiser’s Ball series’ Terry Malts show, Total Trash’s extended Halloween bash, and so forth.

Go out goblins and ghouls of the Bay, raise some spirits and remember the dead. And never forget: Nilbog is Goblin backwards. Read more »

No shame: Activist-rockers the Shondes celebrate Halloween in SF

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The Shondes are a dream come true for music-lovers with a political consciousness. The world can be a rough place, but doom-and-gloom is not this Brooklyn band’s style. With their bright klezmer-pop tunes and soaring, anthemic verses about love, perseverance, and messages of hope, the Shondes are out to better the world -- or at least move their audiences to dance hard and sing-along.
 
Currently touring on their fourth album, The Garden, the Shondes are embracing the power of pop. Whether you’re an activist or just enjoy a good live show, give The Garden a listen and try to get “Nights Like These” or “Running Out of Time” out of your head. Read more »

The Performant: Cheers for fears

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If you consume the news at all you'll find a lot to be afraid of that seems endemic to the modern age: swine flu, restless leg syndrome, Ellis Act evictions, terrorist sleeper cells, compromised data privacy, zombie attacks. But despite its almost constant presence in our lives, this kind of fear merely creates a continuous low-grade malaise, an emotional state which appears to benefit only the evolution of pharmaceutical companies and the self-help book publishing trade.

So it's no wonder that in our search for "real" sensation, we often turn towards a more primal state of fear. The sort of fear that compels us to skydive out of airplanes, ride roller coasters, and surf giant waves, activities designed to trigger that survivalist fight or flight instinct that we then harness for our own adrenaline-generating, sensation-seeking purposes. The kind of fear that compels us to visit that most seasonal of attractions: the haunted house.

There are haunted houses designed to make you laugh and haunted houses designed to make you scream, and ideally a bit of each, a giddy state of being which San Leandro's Fear Overload makes a considered effort to provide.

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The Performant: There will be blood

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It’s Halloween season at last, a time of year when San Francisco really shines, despite the encroaching autumnal shortening of days. In fact, during the day, it’s almost hard to remember that it’s October at all, what with all of those music and street festivals soaking up the rays, but once night falls, it belongs very definitely to darker entertainments, a realm in which San Francisco excels. One of the season’s most reliable harbingers are the Thrillpeddlers and their patented evenings of Grand Guignol spectacle, Shocktoberfest!

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Live Shots: another Nobunny Halloween

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Walking to the Brick and Mortar Music Hall on Halloween night for the Nobunny show, I was disappointed by how few costumed people were roaming the streets of San Francisco. Doesn’t anyone have time for fun anymore? Turns out I need not have worried. My Halloween-loving peers pulled through, turning the small, darkened venue into a veritable haunted house full of Jedi, devils, skeletons, cats, and so much more. Read more »

Heads Up: 7 must-see concerts this week

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The Giants World Series sweep, Halloween endless, worrying about our East Coast brethren. It feels like everyone has ADD right about now, our Twitter feeds overfloweth, and we're all being stretched in a million different directions. The world may indeed be coming to an end. But AU and Zammuto are coming to SF, as are Woodkid, Dark Dark Dark, and R. Kelly's bedroom ballads. Already on our soil we have the SF Symphony's Dia de los Muertos concert, Halloween tricks at Thee Parkside, and even more Nobunny. Read more »

Who needs candy? Get your Halloween fix with creepy crafts!

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Crafters! Ghouls! Two adorable books appeared in the mail recently: Chris Marks' Horrorgami: 25 Creepy Creatures, Ghastly Ghouls, and Other Fiendish Paper Projects (Running Press, 128 pp., $13) and Hannah Simpson's Knitmare on Elm Street: 20 Projects That Go Bump in the Night (Running Press, 127 pp., $17).

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Hunx's Halloween wish list

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See video

Our very own Hunx (you know, of and His Punx) has officially got me excited for Halloween with this new video to an older song in the grand spooky holiday tradition of "Monster Mash," anything by the Cramps, and other such gems. Or maybe it's nothing like that.

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