New bar alert: Rocka Rolla now open in Williamsburg

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credit: Gothamist

Rocka Rolla, 486 Metropolitan Avenue in Williamsburg

Rocka Rolla is the latest establishment from the people behind Skinny Dennis. We checked it out last night and its like Skinny Dennis for the classic rock and hair metal set, for those who prefer Van Halen to Merle Haggard. Unfortunately, it won’t have live music like its older brother. That said, it does have food — sausages and fries — which is a plus and an outdoor space with a view. Well, a view of the BQE that is. [Read more...]

Bushwick real estate undergoes the largest increase in the city in 2014

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In fact, median home value increased by a staggering 30% in the last year. To be precise, Crain’s has the numbers:

June 2013: $427, 200
June 2014: 560,500
a change of 31.2% in median home value

We guess this explains why Zosia Mamet spent over a million on the pink monstrosity pictured above.

Listen: Ty Segall’s ‘Manipulator’

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It’s annoying that Drag City isn’t on Spotify. Thankfully NPR is streaming Ty Segall’s latest, which is getting great reviews. We love it too:

Manipulator also recalls the way some of the best ’90s bands captured that era while making their own timeless records for the canon. Segall’s upper register makes his voice a dead ringer for that of Suede’s Brett Anderson, and Manipulator showcases the mysterious swagger of that group’s classic debut. The distortion monster “It’s Over” channels Blur at its catchiest, while “The Feels” captures the same arena-ready, world-takeover notions that powered Oasis through its early successes. [Read more...]

Permanent Records closing due to the over-inflated rent crisis that’s pummeling New York

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We just lost Lulu’s and Brooklyn Ale House is closing soon. Now this!

The main reason for the record store’s closing has nothing to do with being analog in a digital world, unfortunately it has to do with Real Estate. Like many businesses in Greenpoint, Permanent Records has fallen victim to an over-inflated, hyper-speculative, bullish market where astronomical rents and lost leases are becoming the norm. Cool folks like Permanent Records, who found love in Greenpoint, are now priced out of the neighborhood that once welcomed them with open arms.

“Permanent Records will close the Franklin St. location not because we’re not doing well, but simply because we’ve lost our lease. None of you reading this will be shocked to hear that after months of looking for an affordable suitable store front, we’re now priced out of the neighborhood we helped to shape. It’s an all too common story in the NYC retail / small business landscape.”

Body found floating in East River by Williamsburg’s Giando on the Water

From Broooklyn Paper:

The East River view of a tony Williamsburg restaurant turned grisly all of a sudden on Thursday morning when a man’s body floated to the water’s surface, cops said.

A 911 caller reported the corpse bobbing along the rocks lining the shore in front of Giando on the Water’s wraparound windows at the end of Broadway at 8 am, officers stated.

Police are still trying to determine the identity of the dead man, how he died, and how he got into the water, according to the NYPD.

The restaurant does not serve breakfast, according to its online menu.

This is of course horrible news. Oh, and what’s up with that odd “does not serve breakfast” line?

AM NY has more:

The man, who was partially clothed and appeared to be in his 30s or 40s, was spotted against the rocks near the Williamsburg Bridge and behind Giando On The Water, a Kent Avenue waterfront restaurant, the official said. He was found at about 8 a.m., police said.

A delivery person spotted the body, said a man who worked at the restaurant and declined to give his full name.

Video: Terrifying dust devil tornado-like thingamajig strikes McCarren Park

From Mother Jones:

The spiraling, orange tunnel-like phenomenon appears to be a textbook specimen of a “dust devil”, which according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration​ definition, is a “small, rapidly rotating wind that is made visible by the dust, dirt or debris it picks up.” It’s not a tornado, which is much more powerful and connected to a cloud, and certainly not as dangerous (though in 1992, an Alburquerque dust devil produced 70 mph winds, equivalent to a typical severe thunderstorm.) Instead, according to NASA, “a dust devil typically forms on a clear day when the ground is heated by the sun, warming the air just above the ground. As heated air near the surface rises quickly through a small pocket of cooler air above it, the air may begin to rotate, if conditions are just right.” And they were.

According to Gambale, who was relaxing in the park with friends, it lasted about a minute, leaving some locals “perplexed”, and others filled with a sense of adventure: “Some dude ran into it, that’s why I said don’t run into it,” Gambale added. “And he did! He just got all dusty. It wasn’t that strong obviously.”

But don’t diss the dust devil by calling it weak or short-lived: “It’s a dirtbag hipster tornado and it’s Brooklyn’s.”

Blind Barber, Williamsburg, Brooklyn – Have a pastrami taco while you get a haircut

Blind Barber; credit: Vanity Fair

Blind Barber; credit: Vanity Fair

Also, one more reason to make fun of the neighborhood:

Instead of merging an underground bar/club with a couple of barber chairs out front (as they have on the L.E.S.), the Brooklyn shop puts its emphasis on the cuts, fades, shaves, and pomades that gave the company its name. The new space is still dual-purpose, divided between a French-bistro-style coffee-and-sandwich-shop in the front and a spruced-up, well-equipped, though still-macho barbershop in the back. And while the shop’s design and the quality of its offerings are fantastic as always, the scene is defined almost entirely by its employees—a klatch of talented Midwestern-nice hunks who—instead of kicking your ass or mocking your jeans—are exceptionally kind and helpful, providing top-shelf cuts and understated advice to a bizarrely diverse cast of customers.

From their press release:

“When we built the first two Blind Barber locations, we wanted guests to come for a cut and then be able to disappear from their 9-5 in the back for the rest of the night. With Brooklyn, we created a space that customers will also want to visit from the time their day begins,” said Robert Stansell, owner of Emporium Design. [Read more...]

N trains infested with bed bugs

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And you thought your G and L train commutes sucked:

Bedbugs were discovered on at least three subway trains on the N line this week, authorities said.

Two trains were taken out of service Sunday after the unwanted riders were found onboard some cars, officials said. And on Tuesday, a third N train was also sent to the Coney Island yard in Brooklyn for fumigation. Some of the bugs were found in seat cushions in train cabs, which are used by conductors and motormen, sources said.

Time to start biking.