03/27/15 10:28am
East Village stalwart B&H Dairy Photo via Instagram

East Village stalwart B&H Dairy
Photo via Instagram

An explosion blew the front off a tenement building on Second Avenue in the East Village yesterday, leading to a raging fire, which caused the complete collapse of two buildings, and devastated several others in the immediate area. Nineteen people are injured—several of them critically—and at least one person has been reported missing. The explosion and subsequent fire are believed to be caused by a gas leak, and the New York Times reports that Mayor “de Blasio said workers from the utility Consolidated Edison had been on the site about an hour before the explosion and had found the work being done there to be deficient. But he said there were no calls reporting gas leaks before the explosion.” A gas leak was also the cause of a building explosion which killed eight people in East Harlem in March of last year. (more…)

03/27/15 9:37am

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Usually when you think of an animal hanging out in a fire station, it’s a Dalmatian or some other floppy, lovable dog. But it turns out that cats are just as often the residents of FDNY fire houses, and two of them are racking up followers on Instagram. Carlow, a cat who lives at Ladder 24 near the empire state building, and Boogie, who hangs out at Ladder 13 in the Upper East Side have recently become social media stars. And like, OK, we’ll give it to them: They’re pretty cute.

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03/27/15 9:07am
(Photo: Flickr Creative Commons, Jon Lee Clark)

(Photo: Flickr Creative Commons, Jon Lee Clark)

Scientists are finding the Hudson River has an alarmingly high number of tiny plastic baubles floating around and they’re making their way not just to the ocean, but also up the food chain. WNYC spoke with Sherri Mason, a scientist at SUNY whose research finds the river has 62,000 particles of plastic per square kilometer which is significantly more than the notoriously filthy Lake Erie which caught fire in 1969 (yes, I recently confirmed this actually happened and wasn’t another one of my Dad’s acid befuddled “memories”).

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03/26/15 3:34pm

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Get ready for summer, punks, because this time in a couple months you could be completing a sweet couple of rounds of mini golf in our very own borough. Red Hook is getting a sprawling 18-hold miniature golf course this summer called “Shipwrecked.” The themes: pirates and adventure. “Let’s just say it feel like a little mini adventure,” co-founder and prop supervisor Chris Schneider told DNA Info. “Think Indiana Jones meets miniature golf.” Sold.

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03/26/15 2:14pm
Rockaway Taco (Photo: Chris Goldberg/Flickr)

Rockaway Taco (Photo: Chris Goldberg/Flickr)

The annual opening of Rockaway Taco on Beach 96th Street has attained a sort of ritualistic importance, marking the unofficial start of summertime, if summertime includes interminable rides on the A train. What Chuck the Groundhog is to the coming of spring, Rockaway Taco is to summer’s arrival. And so few announcements have occasioned more disbelief in the Brooklyn Magazine offices than this morning’s report from The Rockaway Times that Rockaway Taco will not be returning to Rockaway Beach this summer. Naturally, the news falls on a day besmirched by dismal, late-winter weather.

Lest you think we’re doomed to skip summer altogether, there is some good news: Andrew Field, the co-founder of Rockaway Taco, will be opening a new taco venture at the Rockaway Beach Surf Club on Beach 87th Street. It will be called Tacoway Beach.

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03/26/15 12:50pm

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It’s not just bodegas and banks that are getting robbed in Brooklyn these days. A wave of theft recently struck Brooklyn nail salons, where thieves relieved the establishments of hundreds of bottles of nail polish. Last week, Williamsburg salon Nail It had 1,200 bottles of nail polish stolen from the premises. That’s a dollar value of roughly $7,500. (Yes: Nail polish can be expensive.)

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03/26/15 11:58am
Photo via Whiskey Soda Lounge's Instagram

Photo via Whiskey Soda Lounge’s Instagram

With his seemingly ever-expanding dynasty of restaurants (which currently includes Pok Pok Ny, Whiskey Soda Lounge and Pok Pok Phat Thai), Andy Ricker has provided as compelling an excuse as any for outsiders to make the complicated commute to the Columbia Waterfront District. But when it comes to WSL—which pairs Thai drunk food favorites with Ricker’s patented drinking vinegar-based cocktails—his primary intention was to create a regular watering hole for locals.  (more…)

03/26/15 11:46am
Photos by Jane Bruce

Photos by Jane Bruce

“It’s been this interesting drama, being perceived as a black metal band and judged as one and judged for not doing certain things based on that,” says Hunter Hunt-Hendrix, frontman for Brooklyn band Liturgy. “In a way, black metal has never been the primary influence.”

He guesses his first exposure to heavy metal came when a teacher smuggled some Metallica or Sepultura into his guitar lessons around age 10. In high-school his interest gained velocity, speeding past Korn or Cradle of Filth to get to terrifying, corpse-paint-smeared Norwegians like Darkthrone. “My attraction to black metal is, in a word, that it’s such a ‘cosmic’ form of music,” says Hunt-Hendrix. “I was listening to a lot of screamo and hardcore in high school too, and that stuff only went so far in this cosmic direction.” Born a New Yorker, Hunt-Hendrix moved to Bushwick after college to start the band who’d become both one of the most loved and hated examples of black metal’s continued creep into the politer confines of indie-rock. (more…)