Gojira a Go-Go

SUN 12/11
We need some advice. Godzilla's 51st birthday is coming up, and we haven't a clue as to what to get the big fella. Imagine the pressure involved with selecting the perfect gift for this ungodly creature that's laid waste to numerous cities and battled everyone from Mothra to onetime Phoenix Suns superstar Charles Barkley. Julian Moraga has the right idea. The 33-year-old head manager of Atomic Comics is throwing Kaiju Fest, a beastly bash celebrating Gojira (the Japanese name for Godzilla). In addition to screenings of such classics as 1962's King Kong vs. Godzilla and Godzilla 1985, there'll be prize raffles, birthday cake, and plenty of love for the Lizard King. "He's this unsupportable force in nature," says Moraga. "He just blows things up with his fire breath. It's just awesome." Better save some cake, Julian; we hear Godzilla's got a big appetite. The fest starts at 10 a.m. Sunday, December 11, at the store's locations in Mesa (1120 South Country Club Drive) and Phoenix (10215 North 28th Drive). Admission is free. Visit www.atomiccomics.com. -- Benjamin Leatherman

Cover Model
Don't judge them by their books

THU 12/8
Chip Kidd believes in love at first sight. Labeled "the closest thing to a rock star" in the field of graphic design by USA Today, Kidd is a master at selling literary works with first glances. Some of his instant-classic covers include those for David Sedaris' short-story compendium Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim and the graphic novels Batman: The Dark Knight and Frank Miller's Sin City. Befitting the man credited for writing the book on contemporary American book design, Kidd has freshly minted his own monograph (and, yes, he designed the cover). Chip Kidd: Book One: Work: 1986-2006 lovingly shows off the artist/designer's entire collection of eye-candy covers. Kidd discusses and signs Book One at 7 p.m. Thursday, December 8, at Changing Hands Bookstore, 6428 South McClintock in Tempe. Admission is free. Call 480-730-0205 or visit www.changinghands.com. -- Casey Lynch

Hackers Rave On
Land of a thousand trances

SAT 12/10
Audio sluts and techno whores get an orgy of sound at "Hackers," the latest trillion-DJ dance do taking place Saturday, December 10, at the usual "undisclosed location." Psytrance guru Ghreg On Earth headlines the event, with sonic support by local hip-hop hoodlums Cut Throat Logic, industrial spinster Kevin Brown, Hot Pink! mixmaster Nimh, and breakbeat bad-ass LP. Other DJs on the bill include Starr, Sonik, Zak, Rize, Sixxx, Audioflux, Hanh the Barbarian, Pac D, Matthew Harris, Simmy, Noah, and Drama. Tickets cost $15 at the door. Call 602-208-9871 the day of the show for location and go time. -- Niki D'Andrea