Top Club in America is in Denver?

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May 172009

Is it the banging sound of tracks not to be released for weeks even months on the best sound systems, the continuous crowds contributing to a positive vibe weekend after weekends, the sunshine terraces with hot sweaty dancers, clubland holds the night owl draw for many of us. It’s

DJ Mag produced on March 25th, their “definitive” list of Top Clubs of the World for 2009, but I just saw this about a month ago and wanted to comment. There’s not much listed as to how this list is compiled except that it’s voted on by readers of the magazine. I’ve always questioned these voter polls legitimacy, because there’s no criteria except for attendee (or listener, in the case of DJ polls) preference and rightly so at times.

No surprise that clubbing meccas Ibiza, Berlin and London are at the top and I’ve had the pleasure to experience at least 4 of them (bold):

01. Berghain – Berlin
02. Fabric – London
03. Space – Ibiza
04. Womb – Tokyo
05. Amnesia – Ibiza
06. Ministry Of Sound – London
07. Pacha – Ibiza
08. Watergate – Berlin
09. D-Edge – Sao Paolo
10. The End – London

Unfortunately as of press time, The End has reached its end so 11 moving up would be: Cocoon – Frankfurt, Germany.

Of the 100 list, the following are the top American clubs:

23: Beta – Denver, Colorado
25: Ruby Skye – San Francisco, California
28: Space – Miami, Florida
30: Pacha – New York, NY
34: Cielo – New York, NY
40: Avalon – Los Angeles, California
53: Vanguard – Los Angeles, California
60: Mansion – Miami, Florida
65: Vinyl – Denver, Colorado
83: 1015 – San Francisco, CA

There’s some interesting tells of this top US clubs list from the global Mag offering. First, Denver is the top US Club? What? I didn’t see that coming. Not NY, LA, Miami or even Chicago… but Denver. I’m still curious to know what’s the voting criteria here. I understand the DJs and mag subs voted on this but really, what are the standards? Club layout? Sound? Crowd? Lighting? Set up? Back stage perks?

I’m ecstatic to see my home hood of SF represented here, and somewhat malcontent that Ruby Skye is the top club still of the city. I would have thought someone else would have stepped up in the scene and created a contender.

The usual suspects from LA, SF, NY and Miami are represented, I’ve been to all of them except those in Denver, and they all seem to have a repeatable formula in layout, sound and dance music styles that don’t venture too far clubbing mainstream. Space for it’s terrace and Cielo for it’s sound and minimalism are unique in separating from the formula. Conspicuously missing are any venues from Chicago or Las Vegas (the self proclaimed mega club venue of the US).

One thing is clear, America’s club scene is well behind that of the global community according to DJ Mag with Germany, UK, Spain, Brazil, Canada, Singapore, Holland, and Argentina all topping the list; most with multiple clubs representing. These are all countries where electronic, dance and house music are just as popular as other genres and even more so in some areas as you hear it saturated in every aspect of life: stores, radio, internet and even elevator musak. At least we still have an auto industry and their commercials to help support the scene…

Top 10 Christmas Movies to remember the holidays

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Dec 222008

Ah happy day. The day that all those Christmas movies will stop playing (that and some dog movie starts up tonight), and of course some families gather and celebrate the “holiday’s”. I just caught a show on the history of Christmas and learned a few interesting things in passing. Christmas Trees derive from pre-Christian Germanic paganism where the tradition of decorating fir trees and evergreens in the winter was to signify the solstice. I also understand that Christmas started as a pagan festival spanning most of the month of December even before anyone had heard of Jesus Christ. Last, most historians believe Jesus was not born on the 25th. I’ll be relaying this to my Jehovah family that’s actually joining us this year for dinner.

Back to movies, here’s my top 10 Christmas movies – in no particular order:

  • The Christmas Story – Ah Ralphie, we all felt your pain in reaching for that Red Ryder BB Gun, finally getting it and then… shooting your eye out. “Only one thing in the world could’ve dragged me away from the soft glow of electric sex gleaming in the window. “
  • National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation – “Where do you think you’re going? Nobody’s leaving. Nobody’s walking out on this fun, old-fashioned family Christmas. No, no. We’re all in this together. This is a full-blown, four-alarm holiday emergency here. We’re gonna press on, and we’re gonna have the hap, hap, happiest Christmas since Bing Crosby tap-danced with Danny fucking Kaye. And when Santa squeezes his fat white ass down that chimney tonight, he’s gonna find the jolliest bunch of assholes this side of the nuthouse. ” That pretty much sums it up.
  • Elf – I seriously saw parts of this movie at least every other day this whole month. “It’s just like Santa’s workshop! Except it smells like mushrooms… and everyone looks like they wanna hurt me… “
  • Gremlins’ – ah the simple movie of how ignorance and human error brings considerable chaos and evil to all…. and partying with your friends for the holidays! What a great film. – “The worst thing that ever happened to me was on Christmas. Oh, God. It was so horrible. It was Christmas Eve. I was 9 years old. Me and Mom were decorating the tree, waiting for Dad to come home from work. A couple hours went by. Dad wasn’t home. So Mom called the office. No answer. Christmas Day came and went, and still nothing. So the police began a search. Four or five days went by. Neither one of us could eat or sleep. Everything was falling apart. It was snowing outside. The house was freezing, so I went to try to light up the fire. That’s when I noticed the smell. The firemen came and broke through the chimney top. And me and Mom were expecting them to pull out a dead cat or a bird. And instead they pulled out my father. He was dressed in a Santa Claus suit. He’d been climbing down the chimney… his arms loaded with presents. He was gonna surprise us. He slipped and broke his neck. He died instantly. And that’s how I found out there was no Santa Claus. “
  • Die Hard – Die Hard can arguably be one of the best action films of the 80’s and it helped catapult Bruce Willis to star material as he portrayed the most real and vulnerable action start to date. – “Hey babe, I negotiate million dollar deals for breakfast. I think I can handle this Eurotrash. “
  • Love Actually – I didn’t like the movie at first but it grew on me after a few viewings. I’ve even karaoke’d Mariah Carey’s hit song on the bus. – “Daniel: Well, because I thought it would be something worse.
    Sam: [incredulous] Worse than the total agony of being in love?
  • Scrooged – Bill Murry is one of my early favorite comics and how can you not enjoy is Frank Cross character: “The bitch hit me with a toaster.” or “I never liked a girl well enough to give her 12 sharp knives. “
  • The Simpsons Christmas Special – now when they merge the Halloween special with the Christmas one, that will take this show to the top of my list. – “Homer: Aah! Thirteen bucks? Hey, wait a minute!
    Clerk: That’s right. One hundred and twenty dollars gross, less social security, less unemployment insurance, less Santa training, less costume purchase, less beard rental, less Christmas club. See you next year.
  • How the Grinch Stole Christmas – this one was a toss up from the animated Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer and the animated version of this soul warmer where the Grinch’s heart grew three sizes that day- “And his fib fooled the child. So he patted her head, he gave her a drink and he sent her to bed. And when Cindy Lou Who was in bed with her cup, he crupt to the chimney and stuffed the tree up. Then he went up the chimney himself, the old liar, and the last thing he took was the log for their fire. On the walls he left only hooks and some wire. And the one speck of food that he left in the house was a crumb that was even too small for a mouse”.
  • The Nightmare Before Christmas – What the Simpson’s didn’t do, Tim Burton succeeded – “Jack Skellington: [singing] There’s children throwing snowballs / instead of throwing heads / they’re busy building toys / and absolutely no one’s dead!”

Movies set in and around NYC

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Sep 122007

What a waste of time, but I compiled a list off my top movies set in or around New York City:

The Godfather I & II
American Psycho
Wall Street
Boiler Room
Rear Window
Miracle on 34th Street
Taxi Driver
Midnight Cowboy
The Usual Suspects
Chasing Amy (well, much of it is Jersey)
Do the Right Thing
Coming to America
Devil’s Advocate

Ghetto girl crossing against the light, as cabbie honks: Dat’s right! Dat’s right! Dat’s right! Hit me! I needs the fuckin’ money!
Brit tourist, waiting for ‘Walk’ light: Oh, how charming.
From Overheard in New York