arts 02.5.03

The Trachtenburg Family

Just as the phrase 'rec room' was seconds from passing into history, along comes The Trachtenburg Family Slideshow Players to invent a new entertainment genre: rec room comedy.

The performances center around old slide collections the Trachtenburgs have bought at estate and yard sales. The father of the family, Jason, clearly has too many neurons firing in his brain at any one time; this allows him to produce jaunty, insightful, yet seriously loopy songs inspired by these slide collections. Thus, slides from an unknown family's trip produces " Trip to Japan, 1959," while slides once used at a McDonalds corporate meeting inspire a mini rock opera euphoniously titled " Contribution Study Committee Report."

While Jason is singing and playing keyboards, his wife, Tina, runs the projector. The piece de resistance, though, is Rachel, their 9-year-old, who plays some mean drum licks throughout, sings background vocals, and adds a deadpan sanity to the mix.

Social and political commentary, deft tunes, a decidedly unosbournian family, and slides of other people's lives add up to one of the more original acts to turn up of late. Makes us want to hang out in the Trachtenburg's rec room for a while.

    Where to find them:

  • February 11th
    NorthSix, 66 N. 6th, Williamsburg, 718.599.5103, show at 9pm, doors open 8pm
  • February 13th
    on WFMU-FM 91.1 from 9am-noon
  • February 13th
    opening for Polygraph Lounge at the Bottom Line, 15 W. 4th [Mercer] 228.6300, shows at 7:30pm and 10:30pm
  • February 18th
    NorthSix, 66 N. 6th, Williamsburg, 718.599.5103, show at 9pm, doors open 8pm
  • February 25th
    NorthSix, 66 N. 6th, Williamsburg, 718.599.5103, show at 9pm, doors open 8pm

The SwingSet Quintet, a jazz combo with some blues and swing in its blood, is definitely worth getting to know. Catch them at Sugar Hill Bistro, 458 W. 145th [Amsterdam/Convent] 491.5505, on February 7th. These guys are good.


Howard Street

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