Thursday, January 31, 2013

Club Reports: LEV3L, Mynt, The Bank (Windsor)

Had the opportunity last Saturday afternoon to visit Canada.....for an hour! We always want Blog readers to have club information for anywhere you go!  That's hard to accomplish in an hour so instead we'll show you some other scenes from my visit and give you some Canada trivia.  And some club reports!  That's the Ambassador Bridge above which crosses from Detroit, Michigan to Windsor, Ontario.  Canada is similar to the United States but there are distinct differences too.
For instance, I think you can only buy beer at government-run stores.  Trivia: The drinking age in Ontario is 19.
Petro Canada is one popular brand of Canadian-owned gasoline stations and are found from BC to Newfoundland. Trivia: American gasoline brand Exxon is able to use their Standard Oil name in Canada, thus doing business as Esso. (S.O.)
Canadians love their donuts and the country's largest chain is Tim Horton's!  It's a must-do stop for any visiting American!  The company has crept into the northern United States and we'd love to see them put in a branch beside the Canadian pavilion at EPCOTTrivia: An expanding partnership with Cold Stone Creamery could bring them to O-Town! 
Canadian department store chains fell on hard times a decade ago and the only large survivors are Sears Canada and The Bay.  The latter, more formally known as the Hudson's Bay Company, has been in business since the year 1670!  Trivia: They're changing their name back this year to Hudson's Bay.
You thankfully won't find a Walgreen's on every corner.  Instead you'll find a Shopper's Drug Mart on every corner!  Trivia: Aspirin is still a trademark of the Bayer Company in Canada so Aspirin is a brand name.  Everyone else has to call their product acetylsalicylic acid.
Branches of "Bee Mo" can be found throughout Canada.  Trivia: They can be found in Orlando too along with Canadian competitor Toronto Dominion Bank.  Remember TD Waterhouse Arena?
Roots is a retail store selling rugged outdoor clothing of high quality, emphasizing Canadianism.  Trivia: The company was made famous dressing Canada's Olympic team members.

OK, here are some Windsor club reports compliments of DJ Ken-E (CDN).  LEV3L features EDM including Saturdays from DJ Chris James.
While EDM nearly died out in the United States last decade, Canada was more aligned with Europe and did not fall for Hip Hop to the same extent as here.  Not that Detroit radio stations aren't listened to.  But EDM is bigger than ever there now.  Mynt Night Club with Owner/DJ Ni-ko has "I Love House Music" on Thursdays and more EDM on other weekend nights.
A third downtown Windsor club is newly opened The Bank Nightklub, open Fridays and Saturdays only for Electronic Dance Music.  It's also home to the largest Disco ball in Canada so you know it's gotta be a great place!
Heading over the Detroit River and back into the good old USA.  No time to visit clubs this trip but I'll be back to check them out!  That's Detroit on the left, Windsor on the right.  Trivia: Because the river runs generally east-west in this stretch, this is the only place along the entire American-Canadian border where Canada lies south of the United States!

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

PI Update: Is News Imminent?

Are we finally going to find out what Disney is planning to do with Pleasure Island?  Here's are two articles from Orlando Business Journal, one from Monday where the writer Richard Bilbao brings up the subject and then another article from yesterday reporting on Disney's response to his inquiry:
The author refers to the Stitchkingdom website as indicating to him that news about PI should come out very soon.  And even the Disney spokesperson says "We look forward to sharing additional details soon.”
Sure hope so.  This waiting is getting old.  Thanks to our roving reporter Thommy for the links!

This Weekend In Techno Town

DJ duo Infected Mushroom (IL) brings there "Fungusamongus Tour" to Orlando tomorrow night at The Beacham.  Known for a fusion of music genres such as Electronic Triphop and Psychedelic Trance, this is sure to draw a huge crowd!  They're also at the Amphitheatre in Tampa on Friday night.
A freestyle DJ music contest where the winner moves to the next level, check this event out at The Social on Friday night.  Contestants include DJ Nova, DJ Rincon, DJ M-Squared.
Friday EDM nights at Vain Nightclub are back, this weekend with DJ duo The Disco Fries (USA) spinning mostly Top 40/House.
(Ladies Free until 12; Guys $10)
DJ/Remixer Kap Slap (USA) is at Roxy this Saturday night playing Top 40/House.
While downtown at Tier Nightclub, Las Vegas-based DJ Sinatra returns following his successful December visit for House.
(Price NA)

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Taboo Masquerade Coming To Orlando

If you miss Venue 13 and are looking for some Alternative Dance, Techno and Industrial to pass your Saturday night, check out the first annual Taboo Masquerade & Fetish Ball coming to Orlando on Saturday, February 16th at Firestone Live. There will be burlesque and fetish performances, open play dungeon equipment and cirque-style aerials to keep you occupied when you're not dancing.  Advance tickets are $15 here, $20 at the door.  DJ Sean (The Castle) from Tampa will be one of the DJ's performing as will DJ Dem Rok (Independent Bar, Barbarella).  So, if you're not psyched about DJ Erok performing at The Groove that night, this might be the place to be.  However, please note that the dress code is fetish, masquerade or latex. Failure to come in costume requires you to pay a $5 party pooper fine at the door!  Fetish/Burlesque/Latex

Monday, January 28, 2013

Could Brazilian Tragedy Happen Here?

This website is all about having dance club fun.  But we're forced to take a timeout following the fire at the Kiss Club in Santa Maria, Brazil this past Saturday night in which more than 200 died.  The fire was reportedly started when a band or band crew member set-off pyrotechnics inside the crowded club.  Could such a thing happen here?

I'm not aware of anyone setting off indoor pyrotechnics at Orlando-area dance clubs but I'm not aware of any laws against it either.  Most places do allow cigarettes though so fires can start in other ways.  No telling how downtown's older buildings would fare if a fire began. Hopefully area fire department chiefs are this week examining clubs in the areas that they serve.  I feel better about the fire-retarding capabilities of more-modern structures such as we see on Disney and Universal property.

The best thing that any of us can do individually are to always be aware of our surroundings in any bar or club entered.  FA's on my flights this past weekend reminded passengers to be aware of where the nearest exit is located and that it might be behind where you're sitting.  Likewise, clubbers should be aware of the location of club exits (many places have only a front door and a back door) and if ever a padlocked exit door is encountered, immediately bring it to the attention of authorities.  Be safe.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Club Reports: Eye Spy, Native Social Bar, Ghost Bar & Lounge

Following a visit to Spybar in Chicago, felt it appropriate to visit Eye Spy in Orlando.  At least the latter has some "spying" features; i.e. secret cameras allow you to spy on fellow clubbers. 
Alas, the music was better in Chicago.  Eye Spy is all Hip Hop with a smattering of Top 40.
The crowd didn't care though; the outdoor dance floor was packed!
The setting was perfect for the beautiful Orlando evening.
Native Social Bar is open for business in the space formerly occupied by Mako's.
The DJ plays from a 2nd floor spot overlooking the ground floor.
The view down onto the ground floor. There must be a reason for the name but I did not see any American Indian theming if that was the intent.
There's a back room with a different DJ but they were both playing Hip Hop.
A third room directly behind the DJ houses yet another bar.  Take some stairs up from here and you can connect into Club 23 where the DJ was playing EDM.
The other new venue we previously reported on is also now open for business; Ghost Bar.
DJ Andolini plays from a perch at the front of the club overlooking the ground floor.
This multi-level venue was also crowded.  All of downtown was crowded following the end of a country music concert at Amway Center and traffic was horrendous.
Have no idea of why they're calling the place Ghost Bar as I saw no related theming here either nor any features like you find in other cities that have clubs using that name.  The Beacham is the only local club that I'm aware of that actually has a ghost living in it!!

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Club Report: Spybar (Chicago)

In Chicago for the day; visiting Spybar for the night!
Opening DJ Garret B playing a pure House mix, mostly non-vocal but really good.

 The kind of House music heard often on Florida Beat
It took awhile but by midnight the dance floor was pretty full.
Spotted: DJ Lauren Lane (USA) having just arrived at the club.
The dance floor really filled-up now as she came on to play.
Her set at Electric Daisy Carnival - Puerto Rico last September stopped me in my tracks; she was spinning House music but her selections are different and unique.
Her set did not start until 1:45am, far later than we see headlining DJ's begin their sets in Orlando.
The 4am closing time has something to do with that.
Fur Coat was supposed to play as well but he cancelled due to scheduling problems.
You can never go wrong with Go Go girls!

 Black is definitely her color!
Lauren Lane is based out of Los Angeles.
And a good time was had by all, Chicago style!

Friday, January 25, 2013

PI Update: Remembering 2006, The Beginning Of The End

Does anyone remember the changes that hit the Island back in 2006, fully two years before the plug was pulled on the Pleasure Island comedy and dance clubs?  2006 was a year that Disney was researching ways to freshen the Island and bring back the excitement that once existed.  We were told at the time that management was out in Vegas trying to get some ideas from there.  But it was also a time when the Island went into transition from an exclusive gated community to a place open to the public, even at night!

Here is how website "AllEarsNet" described what was going on:

Beginning in March 2006, Pleasure Island will undergo some big changes. The West End Stage and the Hub Stage at Pleasure Island are under refurbishment, continuing into late 2006.
Other closings at Pleasure Island include:
-- Superstar Studios -- closed March 3.
-- Missing Link Sausage Company -- closed March 19.
-- DTV -- closed March 19.
-- Zen Zone -- closed March 19.
-- Reel Finds -- will close April 1.
-- Changing Attitudes -- will close April 1.
-- Orlando Harley-Davidson -- closed March 19, but will relocate to the former home of Reel Finds and Changing Attitudes.
In reality the West End Stage and Hub Stage were eliminated.  The whole focus was to get pedestrians easily from the Marketplace over to the West Side and that entailed eliminating the West End Stage so that a new #4 Bridge could be constructed in it's place.  Pedestrians turning at the Hub could then see the bridge to the West Side, something not possible in the bridge's original spot. They would no longer have to trek around the gated club district.  In reality, neither stage was needed because the last thing they wanted at the time was to offer free entertainment to non-paying passersby.

The building housing Missing Link and several stores was gutted and renovated with no announced plans of what was coming.  The renovations turned out to be a complete waste of money because ultimately Paradiso 37 leased the space and ironically the building had to be gutted all over again to meet their specs!  2008 quickly arrived along with the announcement that all the clubs were closing.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Electric Daisy Carnival Update

Beginning with a single concert in Los Angeles, Electric Daisy Carnival has become the premier multi-city EDM event in the United States.  The LA show now takes place in less-political Las Vegas and the event has expanded ever since.  In 2011 they added events in Orlando, Denver and Dallas.  Only Orlando was successful enough to continue.  EDC-Puerto Rico has been a surprise run-away success.  In 2012 they added New York City and they've now announced a 2013 show for Chicago (Joliet), the birthplace of House music.  Tickets are now on sale for the 3-day event taking place over Memorial Day weekend.  Insomniac has confirmed that EDC-Orlando will be returning in 2013!  No dates yet but the 2012 event was in November and we expect similar this year.  EDC-Chicago tickets can be purchased here.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

This Weekend In Techno Town

Last Thursday night at Roxy it was Cosmic Gate, this Thursday night it's DJ Thomas Gold (D)!  Got to see him last September at EDC-Puerto Rico and he was probably the highlight of the night.
Also on Thursday night over in Tampa at Amphitheatre, the #16 DJ in the world, Paul van Dyk (D) will be performing many of his hits including songs from his 6th album "Evolution" released last year.
It's January which means EDM on Friday nights at Vain.  This Friday it's New York City DJ Jimmy Ponzio headlining with local DJ Chad Andrew opening. House, Dance & Top 40.   ($10)

Lost in Trancelation returns for another year this Friday night at Bikkuri Lounge on West Colonial Drive.  It's all about Trance of course, the line-up this month includes DJ Agni, DJ Robb Blak and DJ Intrikit.  

We haven't forgotten that Friday night is 80's Night at Backbooth; we just haven't visited in awhile!  Doors open at 11:59pm for 80's Top 40 videos.
Coming up fast in the EDM world, Baauer's first Orlando visit is sure to be impressive since it's backed by both Disco Donnie and HTG.  Expect a full house at Firestone Live!
($10) ($15)
Should be another good crowd at Roxy for Corporate Slackers (USA). Don't know much about them but it's one more Saturday night option.