Hey, what do you know? Monday is Halloween! Yes, Halloween -- that strange time of the year in San Francisco, rivaled only by New Years, when the streets flood with people, the cars seem to swerve more, and all the taxis mysteriously vanish. Do yourself a favor and avoid Halloween this year. Instead, check out one of the many excellent alternatives listed below. Not only will you hear better music, but you'll also have a statistically higher chance of not calling in sick on Tuesday.
Friday, October 28
Where: Public Works OddJob Loft
When: 10 p.m. - 3 a.m.
Why: The Icee Hot crew is back with another can't-miss party. This month sees the party going deep into the realm of underground techno with a double headliner. Representing the city of Detroit is Omar S, prolific producer and founder of the influential FXHE label (which started the careers of both Seth Troxler and Kyle Hall). Omar S got his start in the early-'00s and has garnered international renown from tracks like "Just Ask the Lonely," his cover of Midway's "Set it Out," and "Psychotic Synthesis." He comes to San Francisco having just released the LP, It Can Be Done But Only I Can Do It, and High School Graffiti, an EP (available for free from Scion A/V). Joining Omar S for the evening is Glasgow-based DJ Jackmaster. One of the guys behind the Numbers imprint, Jackmaster is a rare DJ that doesn't produce music. Instead, he focuses on the craft of DJing by releasing mixes left and right such as Fabriclive 57 and Detroit Special, his recent collaboration with Spencer.
What: Temple of Doom ft. Sasha
Where: Ruby Skye
When: 10 p.m. - 4 a.m.
Why: There are few combinations better than Sasha and Ruby Skye (though Tiësto and Ruby Skye go pretty well together too). The Welsh DJ's long and storied career has seen him play an integral role in the development of progressive house and trance. Nowadays he's considered one of the best DJs in the world with regular shows in places like London, Berlin, and Ibiza. His music is decidedly all over the place, including cutting-edge U.K. garage tracks (first hand accounts say he's been starting sets with Scuba's "Adrenalin"), and the mindless fun of big-room prog-house. Check out his relatively recent live-from-the-board set at Berlin's Panorama Bar.
Saturday, October 29
Where: Som Bar
When: 9:30 p.m. - 2 a.m.
Why: Pearson Sound, Ramadanman, and Maurice Donovan: These are the aliases of David Kennedy. A major player in the U.K. scene, his productions venture from the reverbed-out depths of British dubstep to the jubilant strides of '90s house. Like many of his peers, he's spent the past couple years combining aspects of the full spectrum of dance music to arrive at a brand new U.K.-specific style. You can get an idea of his mixing style by checking out FabricLive.56, his entry in Fabric's legendary mix series. For a clear picture of his productions, check out "Your Words Matter" and his recent white label release "Call My Name." Joining Kennedy for the evening is Dirtybird's Christian Martin and up-and-coming French producer Manaré.
Where: Vessel San Francisco
When: 9 p.m. - 3 a.m.
Why: You want to celebrate Halloween with as many '90s pop culture references as possible. Run by the same people who do Blow Up, Club 1994 is one of the city's longest running '90s nostalgia parties. As you might imagine, this week's party focuses on the darker side of the period, with an emphasis on Halloween and horror movies. Expect to hear all your old favorites (or as they call them, "TRL Classics") with a heavy dose of classic hip-hop (the headlining DJ is influential New York hip-hop radio personality Stretch Armstrong). To quote the Facebook page, "Remember Buffy? Blair Witch? Scream? Well, break out the scrunchies, backwards overalls, and babydoll dresses, because we're going to party like it's 1994!" If you're planning on going, save $10 and buy your tickets presale.