Scene & Herd - New York, New York

A monkey, a Ferry and a new dimension

thom foolery: Thom York has no memory of recording Amnesiac. He doesn’t really have much to say about any of Radiohead’s albums. He does, however, have an important message for fans of the band. He wants you to know that a 30-year mortgage with no prepay penalty is preferable to a 15-year mortgage. That’s because, you can pay a 30-year in 15 years, but you can’t pay a 15-year in 30.

The Thom I spoke to is Thom York, the real estate agent, not Thom Yorke, the singer of Radiohead. Although the band’s Stone Mountain Park concert Monday happened after this newspaper’s publishing deadline, it’s too important to ignore, so I called Thom after I saw one of his signs on someone’s lawn. Thom prefers country music over rock, but when the Radiohead song “High and Dry” played on the stereo of the coffeehouse where we spoke, he liked it.

Love is the drug: I was able to attend Roxy Music’s reunion tour show at Chastain Thursday. However, the performers almost missed it. They very nearly didn’t make it back to Atlanta in time from their New York City shopping trip. The band arrived at the venue so late they didn’t even have a chance to soundcheck. They’re as well known in this country for their style as they are for their music, so that’s somehow excusable. Their tardiness did allow me to hang out for a while at the box office window, where I learned that, for some reason, the A-L will call window is a lot busier than the M-Z window.

The band was magnificent. They broke up in the early ’80s and I never thought I’d see them live. Their set emphasized their early-’70s quirky art-rock songs such as “In Every Dreamhome a Heartache,” an atmospheric chant about a man’s doomed love affair with an inflatable doll. The lyrical climax, “I blew up your body, but you blew my mind,” is not your typical Chastain fare. At 55, singer Bryan Ferry still has his matinee idol good looks and is by far the most star-like performer I’ve ever seen in person. I hope I look one-fourth as good as he does when I’m his age. It probably won’t happen. I’m half his age and don’t look one-fourth as good now.

Chimpan-A to Chimpan-Z: Before I went to Planet of the Apes Friday night (the movie, not the planet), I stopped by Trinity Downtown to check out its Planet of the Apes party. Other than a bunch of posters, there was nothing really Planet of the Apes-like about the place. There was, however, one guy there who looked a hell of a lot like a monkey. I would have taken his picture for this column, but since he wasn’t actually in costume, he probably would have gotten mad. Sorry.

Velvet Jones: Despite the fact I was invited and I RSVP’d, getting inside Dennis Rodman’s Stripper’s Ball at the Velvet Room in Midtown Saturday night was a bit of a chore. Showing up around 1:30 a.m., I walked right up to the headsetted doorman to introduce myself. Instead of letting me and my friend in, he was instructed over his radio headset by someone he called G-Man to send us around to the back door (no Midtown jokes, please). Around back we went. After several minutes of knocking on the back door, a guy finally opened it, but he refused to let us in, despite me threatening that if he didn’t let us in that I would write my entire story about the door (green, metal, sturdy, painful to knock on, and probably fireproof).

We went around front again and with G-Man’s remote blessing, we got in. Regrettably. It was nothing but an overcrowded sauna of a room with a slippery dance floor and mean bouncers.

I saw neither Dennis nor any strippers, even though he was supposed to be holding some sort of stripper’s competition with a $1,500 prize. When I asked one of the guards if he saw Rodman, strippers or a competition, he said, “Man, I ain’t seen shit.” I was later told that Rodman had already split for another club. It appears that the people who paid the $20 cover got nothing for their money but perspiration and the comfort of knowing that G-Man thought they were cool enough to let in.

Creative Loafing will crush your soul: A group of artists at bluemilk’s Paradigm Artspace in Midtown opened a portal to a new dimension Friday night. I joked to myself that it was a radical artistic attempt to relieve the terrible traffic on 14th Street. My joke actually wasn’t too far from the truth. The dimension that the portal led to is called Prudenia. In Prudenia, adults exist in a pure, childlike state, untainted by the spirit-crushing demands of hectic modern life.

The most memorable character to me was a man who called himself Fierce Grape. He wore a cape, smiled a lot, looked confused, and ran around drawing on the floor with chalk. My only criticism is that one of the show’s skits depicted the soullessness of modernity by having characters read from Creative Loafing while running around in circles and mumbling aloud. That’s not fair. Don’t they know we have a feature called Karma Cleanser???