There’s still time to nominate local icons for Best of D.C.
Monument Lab Field Trip
Though exact numbers are elusive, D.C. is dotted with hundreds of memorials, statues, and monuments. As protestors draw fresh scrutiny to exactly who these monuments celebrate—and who they exclude—there’s no better time to embark on a Monument Lab Field Trip. Developed by a Philadelphia-based independent public art and history studio, the self-guided field trip uses a printable zine to guide participants through a gradual process of noticing, analyzing, and questioning the monuments they encounter. Each question will help you unknot the issues that surround monuments—such as their physical context, how they represent power, and why they were originally created—in scribbled observations and sketches. You’ll also encounter prompts to seek out monuments you might not be familiar with, and you’ll be encouraged to design a monument of your very own. If you feel comfortable going on a masked stroll, you can pick a day with good weather and embark on a socially distant wander. But if you prefer sticking closer to home, the Field Trip was designed to work just as well online via Google Earth or Street View. The instructions are available at monumentlab.com. Free.—Michelle Delgado
Watch archived ’80s hardcore punk shows on YouTube
The ’80s hardcore punk scene has taken on a semi-mythic quality for independent music fans. It was during this heyday that a young man named Sohrab Habibion immersed himself in the sounds of D.C., one of hardcore’s primary beachheads, by attending shows all around the area and videotaping whenever he could. Habibion kept his recordings for decades, not knowing they would become dispatches from a much mulled-over chapter in music history. He ultimately donated them to the D.C. Punk Archive, a project of the DC Public Library that preserves artifacts of D.C.’s hardcore scene. Habibion also shared his recordings with Roswell Films, a subsidiary of the Roswell Records label, which digitized the recordings. (Roswell Records was founded by Dave Grohl, who at one point played in the band Scream, featured in Habibion’s recordings.) Though the digitized versions of the shows have been available on Habibion’s site for some time, they can now be streamed, liked, and shuffled into playlists on YouTube. Check out little-known performances from Gang Green, Fugazi, and Moss Icon. Also, you can see the Lemonheads play an incredible set to feeble applause at the Hung Jury Pub or watch GWAR bust up WUST Radio Music Hall (later to become 9:30 Club), complete with early versions of their costumes and primitive pyrotechnics. The Punk Archive itself is also worth a browse—there you’ll find zines, posters, recordings, and other relics that, if it weren’t for Habibion and your local library, would almost certainly be lost to the obscure traffic of history. The videos are available on YouTube or at the Punk Archive. Free.—Will Lennon