arts 07.27.06

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dj sets… Ben Watt, half of the much loved Everything But the Girl duo, has moved behind the scenes in the past few years, launching an independent record label called Buzzin' Fly, and morphing into one of the UK's top DJs. He'll be spinning his signature electronic House sound on August 1st and 3d at Cielo, 18 Little W. 12th [9th/Wash]. Tickets are $20 ($30 for both nights), doors open at 10pm.


indie rock… Thursday: The Long Blondes have the right sound (post-punk meets New Wave) and they're from the right country (UK). Their fame will not be denied. Friday-Monday: Sound Team, Cold War Kids and Midlake ride their buzz out with four area shows. Just announced…9/30 & 10/01: The Mountain Goats. 11/06 & 11/07: Voxtrot. 11/21 & 11/22: Beirut


art… At the George Billis Gallery, 511 W. 25th [10th/11th] 212.645.2621, there's a group show called "In the City." Don't miss the doleful city landscapes of Nicholas Evans-Cato, including "Bridge" (a detail of which is pictured).


dance… "Conversations in Dance" is an evening of dance choreographed by Michael Leleux that will be performed by July 29th and 30th, 8pm, at 100 Grand [Mercer/Greene]. Tickets are $15, available at the door.


cabaret… You know those moments in a Broadway musical when the action pauses, and the character gets to plant her feet, face front, and belt some rousing tune to the second balcony? Natalie Joy Johnson was born to do that. See for yourself when she performs at Ars Nova, 511 W. 54th [10th/11th] this coming Monday, 8pm, $15, no drink minimum. lecture… A slide show about the City Hall Subway Station, which has been closed since 1945, by writer/historian Robert Klara, courtesy of Open House NY, on August 3rd, 7-9pm, $15. It takes place at Brooklyn Lyceum, 27 4th Ave. [President]. Reserve.


book… We came late to the whole Jack Reacher thing — he's the crime-solving loner created by Lee Child. Mr. Child is a Brit by birth, but there's not an iota of what we think of as Britishness, at least as it pertains to mysteries, in the Reacher series — they're pure, hard-boiled, American-style thrillers, not to mention ideal summer reading. We're happily addicted and looking forward to the just-published The Hard Way. Website


comedy… Improv groups from all over the country are NY-bound at the moment, ready to get their game on for the 8th annual Del Close Marathon, that starts Friday and goes through Sunday night. A weekend pass, $20, sold at the door, gives you access to as much improv as you can handle. Reserved tickets are required for certain shows. Details.


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