SATURDAY MAY 27, 2017
 
INSIDE TORO
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For those of you who miss Curb Your Enthusiasm, we present to you below, Larry David's Thanksgiving, a heartwarming animated feature from our friends at Funny Or Die.

Watch as a cartoon Larry recalls being a kid in Brooklyn celebrating America's greatest holiday with his family. Witness the arguing, the kvetching, the overbearing criticism. Listen to the way Larry's Mom screams about white meat. Look away, we're getting a little verklempt.

It's great to know that Jewish families hate loving each other just as much as other families do. To our chauvinistic, but more successful big brother to the south, TORO hopes you had a lovely Thanksgiving.

Related >> Cooking a Light Thanksgiving with Sabrina Falone

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SPiN Toronto — the Ping-Pong social club (yes, it actually exists) co-founded by Susan Sarandon — is hosting its third Plywood exhibit November 22. Held every three months, Plywood showcases the work of Toronto’s best underground artists, while giving guests the chance to wine, dine, and cultivate their table tennis mojo.

The show will feature graffiti kings Art Child and Skam of the HSA crew, Spazz, Jason Mamone, Anser, Nik Dudukovic, and many others. Brendan Canning of broken up Broken Social Scene will act as the evening’s DJ.

Plywood will remain on display at SPiN for another three months, until the King West Ping-Pong joint decides to blow it up and start from scratch.

Since opening last October, SPiN Toronto has been a quirky success, joining a Ping-Pong “galaxy” with member-planets New York, Los Angeles, and Milwaukee. According to the company’s website, you can expect a SPiN club to open on the Moon in the summer of 2012. We admire your ambition, Ms. Sarandon.

Related >> Susan Sarandon Inaugurates SPiN Toronto

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If you thought Blue Jays GM Alex Anthopoulos was done with the surprises, guess again. With a media conference set for 9.30 a.m. today, we thought he was just gearing up to talk about the massive trade with the Miami Marlins that just got league approval yesterday. But instead, he unveiled his 'new' hire as manager, John Gibbons.

"You guys were way off," Gibbons joked to media, whose name was not included in any speculation about who would helm the new-look Jays. "You guys were as far off as I was."

Gibbons led the Jays from 2004-08 and, as everyone has been quick to point out, boasts the club's third-best managerial record (305-305) behind Cito Gaston and Bobby Cox. After he was relieved of his duties and replaced by Gaston, Gibbons worked as bench coach for the Kansas City Royals. He managed a AA team in San Antonio this past season.

Apparently, Gibbons and Anthopoulos developed a good relationship while the latter served as assistant GM to J.P. Ricciardi during Gibbons previous time with Toronto.

"From my standpoint, I don't have any stronger belief that this is the right guy to lead this team," Anthopoulos told media.

And Gibbons, who inherits a lineup that now includes shortstop Jose Reyes, pitchers Josh Johnson and Mark Buerhle, and outfielder Melky Cabrera, is likewise thrilled to step into the post left vacant when John Farrell left Toronto for Boston.

"The front office has put together a legitimate, contending-type team," said Gibbons.

"This is serious stuff. Who wouldn't want to be here?"

Related >> Jays Need Veteran Skip

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If all you have planned for the weekend is playing Call of Duty online, eating reheated pizza and drinking a few 40’s of your favourite malt liquor, you have a chance to class up your weekend by going to the Gourmet Food & Wine Expo at the Toronto Convention Centre. The #GFWE is the nexus for all your gastro delights. It features tons of gourmet food and over 1,500 fine wines, beers and spirits to wash them down.

Over the weekend, the Expo will also include sommelier tips, pairing ideas, or at the very least give you a few new ideas on what other fruits have been fermented for your enjoyment. I had a chance to attend the event on Thursday and was amazed at the sheer number of vendors in attendance (I know, the site boasts 1,500 options yet I was still surprised). Part of what makes the Expo great is that you are able to sample wares that you might not necessarily actively look for or even have come across in your local LCBO. A few of my personal favourite finds were Crazy Uncle Blood Orange Rosemary Maple Punch, Cono Sur’s Viognier wine, and Muskoka Lakes Red Maple Dessert Wine.

When I saw the name “Crazy Uncle” I was obligated to try it simply because of the comedic value. I was pleasantly surprised when I sipped it. If Christmas had a flavour, I would say Crazy Uncle is it. I felt I should have been sitting in front of the fireplace listening to this guy. The Cono Sur Viognier has a light fruity taste and is grown in a sustainable manner (I love that stuff!). Although the dessert wine is great on its own (forewarned it is very sweet) I was told that the true way to enjoy it is to drizzle it on vanilla ice cream ... Um, OK the.

As a special side note, on Saturday (November 17) at 4 p.m. TORO favourite Kevin Brauch will be hosting the world of drinks. Be sure to check that out if you are in attendance.

Now that you know what awaits you at The Gourmet Food & Wine Expo be sure to bring a hearty appetite, extra money for drink/food tickets and some comfortable walking shoes. Now go get your gourmet gastro on!!!!

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R.E.M. hasn't been too relevant since the turn of the century, so what better way to reenter the public consciousness than by making a video starring professional sleaze Lindsay Lohan, directed by everyone's favourite boytoy, James Franco!

Witness below R.E.M.'s new video for "Blue," the final track off their final album, Collapse Into Now. The video is a dreamy, incoherent melange of Los Angeles iconography, and further evidence that Franco is probably always stoned. Lohan is seen posing for photographs and looking trashy, as per usual.

Is the video for "Blue" a fitting farewell for a legendary American rock band? Not really, but it's novel eye candy and a respectable vehicle for its ethereal song.

Related >> WATCH the Video for R.E.M.'s "We All Go Back to Where We Belong"

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Hostess Brands Inc. is shuttering its factories and more than 18,500 employees will be out of work as they liquidate the business. The 82-year-old company, famous for Twinkies and Wonder Bread, made the decision after they were unable to strike a deal with their striking bakers. Hostess filed for Chapter 11 in January for the second time in a decade.

The last batch of Twinkies rolled out of the factories this morning. Hostess could sell the Twinkie and its many other brands to another company through the liquidation process. In Canada, Saputo owns the rights to Hostess snacks and Weston bakeries produce Wonder Bread.

Industry experts cite strained labour relations, consumers' health consciousness, and rising commodity costs as the central reasons for Hostess's failure. "We deeply regret the necessity of today’s decision," said Gregory F. Rayburn, Hostess's chief executive, "but we do not have the financial resources to weather an extended nationwide strike."

TORO's thoughts go out to our American brothers and sisters now out of work, and to that little bit of childhood nostalgia that is now dead.

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Surprise! Rihanna will play Toronto's Danforth Music Hall tonight as part of her 777 tour. The singer made the announcement this morning on her Twitter page.

Said the young lady: "Yo Toronto. I'll be at the Danforth tonight. Will You?" Well, we won't, Rihanna, because we have a hot date and need a little more advance notice, but I'm sure a gabillion people will be invading Greektown.

Tickets for the show are being given away through radio stations (take that iPods!) and a select number of wristbands will be available at the door on a first come, first serve basis.

For a performer who tends to sell out stadiums, playing the 1,400-capacity Danforth Music Hall should be a treat for concertgoers. In case you don't get in, Rihanna plays the ACC on March 18.

Related >> Rihanna Goes Nude for Album Cover

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Paul McCartney, Kanye West, the Who, Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band, Alicia Keys, Roger Waters, Billy Joel, Jon Bon Jovi, and others will play a Hurricane Sandy benefit concert at Madison Square Gardens. The concert, dubbed 12.12.12 for its date, will raise money for the Robin Hood Relief Fund.

The concert is being organized by Clear Channel Media and Entertainment, the Madison Square Garden Company, and the Weinstein Company, the same group that held the September 11 benefit "The Concert for New York City."

More acts will be announced in the coming weeks. Until December 12, you can donate here.

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A sequel to the 1988 Ivan Reitman film Twins, starring Arnold Schwarzenegger and Danny DeVito, is in the works. And it will also star Eddie Murphy as the their brother. We'll give you a minute to change your pants.

Just in case you never had a childhood, and your parents were religious, anti-fun, crypto-fascists, Twins followed the reunion of two brothers (Schwarzenegger and DeVito) who were born in some weird science experiment. Yes, the plot was stupid, and that was the point. Get over yourself, Nazi!

Anyway, all parties seem enthused with making the sequel (mostly because they stand to make a shitzillion dollars). "I can see a poster, a billboard with us three," said Ah-nuld. "They found another one!' Triplets! 'Only their mother can tell them apart!' I would do that in two seconds, because that’s real entertainment."

Normally, when we read a statement that dumb, we take to the bottle, but nostalgia has gotten the better of us. This movie will probably be awesome. And if it keeps Eddie Murphy from making kids movies, we will find ourselves in far more virtuous world.

The script will be written by Book of Mormon actor Josh Gad. The hilarity will be had by all.

Related >> WATCH the Trailer for Arnold's The Last Stand

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Beach House has just released their video (attached below) for "Wild," the second track off this year's Bloom, and it's as depressing as an orphanage on Father's Day.

If you like watching moribund white kids crying, fighting, smoking, and banging, then you will love this video. The rest of you can close your eyes and think of England.

The tune itself is great. It's what we've come to expect from Beach House. The Baltimore band's music has quality that is at once ethereal and devastating, like masturbating to the point where you're so tired, any chance at productivity is rendered impossible.

Related >> TORO Reviews Beach House's Bloom

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It's official: Anthony Bourdain's new CNN show is called Parts Unknown and you can watch a preview for it below.

After nine seasons of No Reservations and two seasons of The Layover, Bourdain announced earlier this year that he would be leaving the Travel Channel for CNN. The reason? Going to bed with the latter would afford Bourdain and his crew the resources to venture into places the former would never allow, like say, post-revolution Libya.

According to Bourdain's Twitter feed, actual filming for the new show has not yet started. "Just a few more days and we leave to start shooting," he says

Interestingly, the preview for Parts Unknown makes no mention of food. We're going to assume Bourdain is just being coy, because if this show doesn't contain any food porn gorgefests, count us out.

Related >> Toronto Is In Bourdain's Final Season of The Layover

Related >> Bourdain Has No Reservations About CNN

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Ever since Disney bought Lucasfilm for a shitzillion dollars and announced that there would be three more Star Wars movies, everyone outside of North Korea has been asking one question: "Who's going to direct them?" No answer has yet to surface, but we've summed up the geek-gossip for you.

In a recent interview, attached below, self-described "keeper of the flame" George Lucas (vaguely) outlined his vision for the coming trilogy. And while no preferred director was mentioned, a "longlist" of candidates does exist.

Steven Spielberg, Quentin Tarantino, and Zack Snyder have already refused involvement. Spielberg would have been the ideal choice to direct the new films, but unless you like N-word dropping Ewoks or shirtless Jedi screaming in slow motion, the loss of Tarantino and Snyder, respectively, cannot be considered a defeat. 

More discouraging was the withdrawal of J.J. Abrams, who cited his fear of, you know, helming the most beloved film franchise in the history of ever: "I am looking forward more [than] anyone to the next iterations of Star Wars, but I believe I will be...a paying moviegoer!" What a shame. We felt that Abrams's Star Trek was the Star Wars everyone wanted. Instead we got six years of this

So who's left? Reportedly in the mix is Jon Favreau (Iron Man), Edgar Wright (Scott Pilgrim Vs. the World), and Colin Trevorrow (Huh?). Conan O'Brien has even suggested that Wes Anderson direct.

Whoever is chosen, just prepare yourself for disappointment. Returning to the nightmare that was the Star Wars prequels was like returning from summer camp to find that your parents had been murdered and replaced by Manson-like loonies with a fetish for dildos shaped like lightsabres. Maybe the new movies will good, but they'll never undo the horror of the prequels, which permanently dwells in the dungeon that was your beloved vision of Star Wars.

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Kevin Clash, the puppeteer and voice behind Elmo has been granted a leave of absence from Sesame Street after being accused of having sex with a 16-year-old boy.

While Clash admits to having a relationship with the accuser who is now 23, the actor denies having sex with him when he was a boy.

"[The relationship] was between two consenting adults," said Clash. "I am deeply saddened that [the accuser] is trying to make it into something it was not."

The accuser has sought the legal advice of Andreozzi and Associates, famous for representing the Jerry Sandusky victims. The firm had this to say in a statement: In standing with Clash, Sesame Street is attempting to "discredit the victim in order to protect its employee and the image of one of its most valuable characters. This approach places a greater value on a puppet than the well being of a young man."

However this ends, we've come to realize one thing: Nothing in this world can be left untarnished, not even Sesame Street. Damn.

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[html]For many of us young bloggers the Goldeneye 007 video game was an introduction to James Bond. To celebrate the release of Skyfall, out November 9, we grabbed an old N64 system to see if it stills holds up. Watch and find out.

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In indie rock, five years might as well be a decade. Trends, bands and labels come and go so fast any group taking such a long break may find the music world a very different place than the one they left.

But for San Francisco duo Two Gallants time, it seems, has not weathered their personal and professional dynamic. Five years after their self-titled third album and a subsequent hiatus, Adam Stephens and Tyson Vogel, lifelong friends who started making music together before their teenage years, have picked up exactly where they left off. They dropped the excellent The Bloom and the Blight this past September and are currently touring across Europe.

At a recent Toronto show we found the guys in a quiet, soft-spoken mood, but gained some insight into their reformation.

How soon after the hiatus did you start playing together again?

ADAM: Two years, three? I don’t even know anymore. We’d planned (earlier) to get back together but things just kept getting in the way. Delayed by circumstances.

Was this reformation ever in doubt?

ADAM: No. We knew we’d work on new stuff. Old stuff is boring.

Upon coming back together did you find the chemistry was still there?

TYSON: Kinda, surprisingly. Nothing really changed. We were able to go back to the original point, the point of us making music together in the first place. Because of the break, having that chance to explore other things, we both came back with a broader perspective. With ourselves, on our own instruments, and together.

ADAM: Things change, everything changes. The new album, to me, feels more mature than our previous records.



Did you miss being on the road, the bane of every musician’s existence?

TYSON: Yeah. But we played with different groups. Adam toured a couple times under his own name, and I toured with other bands as well. We both had that experience, just with different musicians. Bands where there was more to the equation. We got a clearer view of the connection we had as friends, and musicians.

Is every show still a cathartic experience?

TYSON: We both feel most comfortable in the live environment, it’s where we thrive. Every show, every song, we do something different so we still depend on that catharsis. Some shows are more intense, some sound good, some sound bad, but we both try to reach that high point with every show.

ADAM: It depends on the crowd a lot. We can play well but get a totally unexpected reaction ... a Montreal show recently was very subdued. It’s unpredictable. Audience participation makes a good show for me.

You’ve been friends since, if I’m not mistaken, you were five or six years old. What can you attribute your long-standing friendship to, if anything?

ADAM: I dunno. There’s a certain understanding we have that most people don’t. We speak a similar language. We’re basically siblings for all we’ve done together.

Is that you two on the cover?

ADAM: [Nods] A recently rediscovered photo.

Did you discuss putting it on the cover at all, or did it just feel right?

TYSON: (Cover art) comes after the hard work of writing and recording. You don’t want it to be frivolous, you want it to support the music more than have its own sort of point.

Despite coming after years of being apart creatively, this is by far your shortest album. Is there anything to be read from that?

ADAM: It’s the shortest but it also has the most songs. Previously we were averaging four-five minutes. Now that’s just ... less.

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With Movember upon us, we bring you these classic moustaches. There were so many more we could have included but these will give you a good sampling of styles to achieve if you're participating in the annual month-long competition to grow 'staches while raising awareness and funds for men's health issues. We invite all to join Team TOROmagazine.com and we'll keep track of your progress right here on TORO. We're also giving away prizes. So share your pics, join our team, watch for more details about contests and may the best Mo' win!

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Our friends in rising Toronto band The Box Tiger are set to release a brand-new single, “Set Fire to Your Friends,” on iTunes November 6. Before then we’re hosting an exclusive stream of the song. Do yourself a favour and listen below, as you may not hear a tighter indie rock track this season.

The Box Tiger will be playing a number of dates across Southern Ontario and the Northeastern US next month, including an opening spot for furious indie rock legends ...And You Will Know Us By the Trail of Dead November 20 @ Lee’s Palace in Toronto. Check out those dates and the stream:

November 8 - Portland, ME (Gelato Fiasco) - 8 p.m.
November 10 - Portland, ME (Flea for All) - 11 a.m.
November 10 - Brunswick, ME (Gelato Fiasco) - 9 p.m.

November 11 - Portland, ME (Slainte) - 9 p.m.  

November 14 - Brantford, ON (Therapy Lounge) - 8 p.m.
November 15 - Waterloo, ON (Radio Laurier) - 11 a.m.
November 15 - Waterloo, ON (Maxwell’s) - 8 p.m.
November 16 - Barrie, ON (Foxx Lounge) - 8 p.m. 

November 17 - Hamilton, ON (Dr. Disc - in-store) - 3 p.m.
November 17 - Hamilton, ON (The Casbah) - 8 p.m. 

November 20 - Toronto, ON (Lee’s Palace) - 9:30 p.m.

"Set Fire To Your Friends":



Related >> The Box Tiger Live @ TORO
Related >> TORO Interviews The Box Tiger

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Fashion retailer Gravitypope has just announced that it is opening a three-floor boutique in Toronto. The store will be located in a newly-constructed building (pictured above) in the trendy West Queen West neighbourhood in November.

Gravitypope opened its first store in Edmonton in 1990, and has since been Western Canada's premiere purveyor of men's and women's footwear, clothing, accessories, and apothecary goods.

The Toronto boutique joins five existing locations in Vancouver, Edmonton, and Calgary. Toronto is the largest business expansion in Gravitypope's history

"I’m thrilled to bring Gravitypope’s extensive array of carefully chosen collections and modern day brands to Toronto," said Dirks in statement. "I launched my business with the belief that creativity enlightens life, and I can’t wait to share this spirit with the city."

The boutique will have more than 4,000 square feet of retail space, its interior inspired by Louis XIV era design, Art Deco, and modern influences.

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[html]Our pals in Brooklyn band Antlers are hopefully keeping dry during Hurricane Asshole. In a bit of serendipity today they’ve released a video for “Drift Dive” from their Undersea EP - it’s a psychedelic drop into a deep pool of water, not unlike the sensation one gets from listening to their music. Check it out:





Related >> TORO Interviews Antlers

Related >> Antlers Live @ TORO

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According to the Star, Toronto city councillors have voted to go home early for Halloween. And we have voted to give them the finger.

Councillor Karen Stintz pitched the motion to break at 2 p.m. in the name of "celebrating a community event." Councillors responded in turn with a mixed bag of agreeance, outrage and indifference.

"We’re tricking our community to think we’re actually here slaving away for them when the first item of business is getting time off,” said Councillor David Shiner.

In a gallant act of compromise, resident forehead Denzil Minnan-Wong proposed the councillors leave at 4:30 p.m. instead.

As the clock ticked on the debate about free time, Mayor Rob Ford's brain, Doug Ford, burst out in a fit of rage: "This is absolutely ridiculous. We're either leaving or we're staying. Let's just vote." And for the first time in the history of ever, Doug Ford actually said something sensible.

Before council could look any more stupid in front of the media, they voted 29-14 in favour of breaking at 4:30 p.m.

If you need anymore proof that Canada's largest city is run by a bunch of Quadrapedal scoundrels, watch below.

Related >> His Worship Rob Ford Gets Gangnam-Styled

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