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Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Weekend Party Preview: Chelsea Wolfe at 120 Minutes, Optimo at No Way Back, and More

Posted By on Wed, Aug 31, 2011 at 11:08 AM

Labor Day is the San Franciscan holiday. It's the one time of the year when everybody's happy: the burners enjoy themselves at Burning Man, and the rest of us get to stay behind and enjoy a city without burners. It's a win-win situation, and one that I doubt anybody complains about. Appropriately, nightlife during this brief period is usually delightful. Here are a few choices that I think you'll enjoy.

Chelsea Wolfe is at 120 Minutes this Friday.
  • Chelsea Wolfe is at 120 Minutes this Friday.

Friday, September 2

What: 120 Minutes One-Year Anniversary with Chelsea Wolfe, S4NtA_MU3rTE, and GuMMy†BeAR

Where: Elbo Room

When: 10 p.m. - 2 a.m.

Why: If you're into Supreme, pentagrams, hip-hop, and goth culture. 120 Minutes is this city's ground zero for the new crossover sound that's got a hundred names: witch house, drag, grave wave, rape gaze, and based-goth. Love it or hate it, it's a force in popular culture that cannot be denied. Now, on their first anniversary, 120 Minutes is doing it big by bringing up L.A. artist Chelsea Wolfe, whose music they describe as "...raw, dirging doom-folk with hints of black metal, deep blues, and minimal synthesizer music." This one's gonna be too freaky to miss.

What: Shame Spiral with Bus Station John, Stanley Frank, and Jenna Riot

Where: Public Works

When: 9 p.m. - 2 a.m.

Why: The tagline says it all: "disco is fucking gay, so we're going for it." Promoter Aysha Cromeenes obviously means it, as she's enlisted the help of two of this city's finest discaires: Bus Station John (Tubesteak Connection) and Stanley Frank (Viennetta Discotheque). Expect to hear sleazy bathhouse joints, Hi-NRG Italo, classic cruising tracks, and a whole bunch of records you've probably never heard before. For a taste of the evening check out this mix Stanley Frank did for Honey Soundsystem's Honey Potcast.

Saturday, September 3

What: No Way Back Presents Optimo and Mi Ami (Live)

Where: Public Works Oddjob Loft

When: 10 p.m. - 4 a.m.

Why: The always-tasteful No Way Back crew continues to set the bar high with their latest booking of Glaswegian DJ duo JD Twitch and JG Wilkes (a.k.a. Optimo). Legendary in its native U.K., Optimo has never played in San Francisco as a whole unit. Expect to hear an impressive blend of house, post-punk, acid, industrial, and a bunch of unpredictable leftfield choices. To get an idea, check out this classic essential mix Twitch and Wilkes did for BBC Radio. As if that wasn't enough, local favorites Mi Ami are set to play their first live show in San Francisco since singer Daniel Martin-McCormick moved to New York. Rounding out the bill are solid DJs Conor, Solar, Pickpocket, and Ryan Poulsen.

What: KONTROL Presents D.Diggler and Kollektiv Turmstrasse Live

Where: The Endup

When: 10 p.m. - 6 a.m.

Why: Casting a wide shadow on the topography of San Francisco nightlife is monthly techno party KONTROL. Held at the historic (and sometimes messy) Endup, KONTROL features three excellent resident DJs and a booking policy that manages to catch some of the biggest names on the touring circuit. This month they've got D. Diggler and Kollektiv Turmstrasse, two shining examples of German techno. Expect lots of bleeps, bloops, some epic breakdowns, and a couple anthemic risers. Check out this mix by D. Diggler and this video for Kollektiv Turmstrasse to get a feel for the vibe.

Sunday, September 4

What: Honey Labor Day With My Cousin Roy

Where: The Holy Cow

When: 6 p.m. - 2 a.m.

Why: Gay, straight, or whatever: Honey Soundsystem is one of San Francisco's best weekly parties and certainly Sunday night's best kept secret. Since its opening five years ago, Honey has cultivated a unique identity for itself by using the history of queer nightlife in San Francisco to inform its operations in the present. Along the way, the party has booked some seriously awesome DJs. One such selector is My Cousin Roy, this month's guest DJ. Though he's mostly known in dance music circles as the head of trendy NYC based nu-disco label Wurst, Roy's been making waves recently with the tracks he's released with Nick Chacona as Beg to Differ (playing the same day, actually, at Café Cocomo). To get a taste of the evening, check out this mix Roy put together for XLR8R. Also, if you like beer busts and BBQs, Honey's doing both from 6-8:30. You can't say no to good music and $10 for all the Bud Lights you can drink, can you?

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Derek Opperman

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