Thrills for the week

Going down? A City Symphony, an artfully machine-driven and surreal black-and-white flick documenting the demolition of San Francisco's quake-damaged Embarcadero Freeway, will get you there, piece by piece. Bay Area filmmaker Dominic Angerame appears in person for an 8:30 p.m. screening at the Bug Performance and Media Art Center, 3654 Navajo; for tickets, $7 ($5 members), call 477-5977.

Soul food: A trip tonight to E-Town will do your jaded ticker good. The environment-friendly radio show's taping features a pair of musical acts whose messages come straight from the heart. African-American, all-woman, a cappella group Sweet Honey in the Rock can uplift an entire room with a single, perfectly harmonized note, borrowing the soul of gospel music, the bedrock of the blues and the joy of an African chant to create a sound steeped in social consciousness and cultural pride. In contrast, country-blues revivalist Kelly Joe Phelps digs deep into Mississippi Delta mud for his inspiration, drawing a glorious, lonesome sound out of little more than a bar slide and a lap-held Gibson Jumbo guitar. Fine picking skills and a gruff voice that recalls Skip James complete the Phelps package. Both acts appear at 7 at the Boulder Theater, 2030 14th St., Boulder; admission is $9 in advance ($11 day of show). For tickets and information call 786-7030.

November 10
Can 'do: Remember the guy in the apron at the grocery store who used to stack soup cans into impossible pyramids, inviting pranks and certain disaster? The results of the CANstruction Design/Build Competition, on display at the Denver Design Center, 595 S. Broadway, gives those supermarket architects a shiny new image--while benefiting the Food Bank of the Rockies. Ten crews of real architects went blueprint-to-blueprint Saturday to create structures from canned and boxed foods; you can drop by and see the results through Wednesday. After that, the edible building materials will be dismantled and donated; if you'd like to join in with a donation of your own, call the food bank at 371-9250.

November 11
The beat goes on: The jump from her homeland of Cameroon to the cosmopolitan hotbed of Paris might seem unsurpassable, but not so for worldbeat star Sally Nyolo, a former member of the acclaimed Zap Mama whose Afro-European roots are her stylistic bread and butter. Nyolo's blistering vocals hold those multicultural influences in resonant check, with traditional and electronic percussion and instrumentation trading beats at every turn. A truly global artist, Nyolo performs tonight at 8 at the Boulder Theater, 2030 14th St., Boulder; for tickets, $10, call 786-7030.

November 12
Miami voice: Hold on to your seats, ladies and gents. Tonight at the Tattered Cover, Carl Hiaasen is in the house. A powerhouse purveyor of outrageous, offbeat plotting, unforgettable characters and laugh-out-loud wit, the Florida journalist-turned-author is in town to threaten--on the heels of Strip Tease and Stormy Weather--with Lucky You, his latest and potential best-selling detective laugher. Hiaasen reads at 7:30; free tickets for a seat and a place in the book-signing line will be given out beginning at 6:30. The Tattered Cover is located at 2955 E. 1st Ave.; call 322-7727.

Firm foundations: So. You'd rather keep your feet on the mile-high ground of your own home, sweet home. Okay, here's an alternative: The other Tattered Cover, at 1628 16th St. in LoDo, is hosting a book-signing of a totally different ilk. To showcase a second collection of handy, slim, pocket-sized and thoroughly informative Historic Denver Guides, a handful of contributing authors and photographers will discuss and sign the new four-volume series, which focuses on historic buildings and neighborhoods in Capitol Hill, Potter-Highlands and along East Seventh Avenue. Meet the historians tonight at 7:30; for details call 436-1070.

Sturm and twang: Loosen up. Dress down, chew on a straw, mosey on up to Boulder and show up on the doorstep of the Fox Theatre, 1135 13th St., tonight around 9, when local throwback country-Western band Slim Cessna's Auto Club teams up with Oxford, Mississippi, trio Blue Mountain for a down-home evening of music. Too durn much. Tickets are $5.25; call 443-3399.

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