Something about DJ Zygote's mixed bag of melodic IDM and delicate indie rollicking gives "Under the Radar"
the slightly dour charm of an ex-lover's mix tape. But just when you start to get nostalgic for the old days of spinning Amon Tobin records with your long-lost sweetheart, the soundtrack takes an unpredictable twist, to an armchair exploration of sampled jazz, a lounge classic, or even, ahem, a pop song. This combination can make Wednesdays at the Julip Cocktail Lounge a real trip, especially when coupled with the bar"s slightly haughty urban décor, shadowy ambience, and strong drinks. But don't be put off by the chichi vibe and sheepish fashionistas. When the crowd loosens up after midnight, just point those Chuck Taylors to the dance floor and enjoy the revelry. "Under the Radar" transpires from 9:30 p.m. to 2 a.m. at 839 Geary (at Hyde), S.F. Admission is free; call 474-3216 or go to www.julipsf.com
-- Nate Cavalieri
Sometimes you discover such a jewel of a spot that you don't even want to whisper its name, for fear you'll find it infested with hordes of clubgoers. This is one of those times. But alas, this find is just too awesome not to share. DJ Bus Station John hosts the very new "Tubesteak Connection," where he spins boss bathhouse classics, smack dab at the nexus where the '70s meet the '80s. The Hi-NRG and Eurodisco tunes that govern the dance floor provide a much-needed break from the techno, house, and ambient beats that have taken the club scene hostage these days. And the promoters promise "super-cheap booze, with even cheaper boys." What more do you need? The connecting takes place on Thursdays from 9 p.m. to 2 a.m. at Aunt Charlie's Lounge, 133 Turk (at Taylor), S.F. Admission is free before 10 p.m., $3 after that; call 441-2922 or visit www.auntcharlieslounge.com.
-- Brock Keeling