Fall Arts: Fall on high

Duck rock and leather-feathers in Clubland

Forget that catchy monster musical Avenue Q anthem "Everyone's a Little Bit Racist" (isn't there a dance remix yet?) — here's something really tickly-tacky. Last month my inverse fabuloid, anti–drag queen amigo Downy (think hairy white Whitney with nylons over her head) threw a huge party in Manhattan called "9/11 in July." Business-suited patrons were doused with baby powder on entry, to the strains of Enrique Iglesias's "Hero" and the post-tragedy oeuvre of Mr. Bruce Springsteen. Flyer tagline: "Too early?" It was packed.

Here in the Bay, our benchmark of club-style civic self-critique is still the slew of "Fuck Burning Man" parties that spring up right about now. (What, no Muni-meltdown tunnel takeovers? And how 'bout all those unguarded downtown construction-boom sites? IMHO, jes' sayin'.) Still, autumn is smokin' for clubbers, with enough sassy subversion and genre-bending events to make nighttime terrors of us all. Fall's buzz: neon laces, wine cocktails, big scarves, duck rock, blinking LEDs, and cutoffs with fishnets. Party!

Start big — and in the daylight, when both the out-rave-ous San Francisco Love Fest (Sept. 29, www.sflovefest.org) and the fetish-fantastic Folsom Street Fair (Sept. 30, www.folsomstreetfair.com) converge on San Francisco in an — eek! — angel-winged orgy of fun fur and leather. This year the intertwined events have pulled a surprise musical switcheroo. The usually local-oriented and charmingly low-tech Love Fest goes steroidal, with a lineup of international '90s kinda supastar dance acts: Chemical Brothers, the Crystal Method, Paul van Dyk, and almost a hundred more. Then Folsom — renowned for its circuit techno overkill — injects itself with some indie dance-pop cache, with live performances by Imperial Teen, Cazwell, and the Ladytron DJ Tour. The other giant, hideously glamorous switcheroo of the season, of course, will be the Miss Trannyshack Pageant, where fun fur and leather get drenched in competitive drag queen guts. But you'll have to watch the Trannyshack Web site (www.trannyshack.com) for the date and location; it's like a virtual game of hide the salami!

The clubs keep pumpin' it out too. The promoters of the huge, fabled, much-delayed Temple Nightclub (www.templesf.com), with its three dance floors, six bars, and attached restaurant, assure me it'll be ready for its Sept. 7 grand opening party — it's already hosted a Hilary Duff meet and greet! Prepare for an onslaught of ginormous parties to fill the cavernous space. In the meantime, you can check out the club-oriented big time of Mezzanine (www.mezzaninesf.com), with night owls screeching for dyke punk-funk-crunk rappers Yo Majesty (Sept. 12), DJ Jefrodesiac and friends' Robot Rock party featuring Kentucky's (only?) house rockers VHS or Beta (Sept. 14), "Do the Bartman" remixer Diplo (Sept. 22), and Christ-obsessed French techers Justice (Oct. 10). And the powerhouse musicologists of Blasthaus (www.blasthaus.com) present, at various locales, the ambient mindfunk of Bonobo (Sept. 9), Argentina–via–Los Angeles global groove heartthrob Federico Aubele (Sept. 21), and post-punk techno god Superpitcher (Oct. 19).

Too big for you? Head down any night this fall to 222 Club (www.222club.net), which just revamped its system to become the hottest little tech-dance venue in the city. Also hottt, but newer: too-fab hotel haunt Bar Drake (www.bardrake.com), awesome Latino-tinged hang Cantina (www.cantinasf.com), and drunken queer craziness at Truck (www.trucksf.com). What to drink at all of these places?

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