Let 2013 all hang out at these musical blasts
TOFU AND WHISKEY If you're like me, you'd much rather chug the Champagne of Beers straight from the can in flower-print stretch pants while loud music ricochets through your skull than hit a club club on New Year's Eve. You're down to party, but you want to keep it cheap, right? Or at least keep it weird.
Clearly, the cheapest way to do NYE is to hit a house party or an underground show. And obviously, I'm not here to rep those secret gems, because, you know, cops and party poopers. Go out and find those on your own, check Facebook feeds and emoji-filled text message chains and keep pestering your most social friends.
But there's another option: that awesome live show or local bar party that, while not so underground, is still not a $150 nightmare of sputtering randos in a warehouse. These are some quality events at which to gather your favorites and ring-a-ding-ding in 2014. (All take place Tue/31.) Find more NYE dance parties here and fun general events here.
"Hello Earthlings. We are just landed." If you really want to get down on NYE, London-via-Montreal duo Blond:ish can help put you in the mood. It's all pulsing bass lines and feather-thin synths leaping along, like a beautiful insect just pushing forward, following the path it's been given and dispensing drips and drops along the way, all to the all-important beat. Blond:ish comes as part of the Mighty Mammoth Masquerade, which also includes (whoa) visuals, a photo booth, free food bites, and the very-important midnight Champagne toast. With Pink Mammoth resident DJs Gravity, Moe Moe, Jonathan Will, and more. 9pm, $40. Mighty, 119 Utah, SF. www.mighty119.com
Weirdo rap forever, am I right? There's little more invigorating than a Danny Brown cut. The Detroit rapper's flows feel like warped tickles, his rhymes tight and clever, and his beats fresh and trippy. He's ridden the hype train for the past few years, and in 2013 played Coachella, toured with Baauer and Kitty (Pryde), and released Old (Fools Gold), the successor to 2011's excellent XXX and 2010 breakout The Hybrid. His live shows are playful and animated, that adorable gap-toothed grin shining like a bolt of light from the stage, quickly hidden and then flashed again while its owner leaps and bounces along the front, spitting words and revving up the already-freaking crowd. With Flatbush Zombies and Traxamillion. 9pm, $45. Mezzanine, 444 Jessie, SF. www.mezzaninesf.com
Born on the border of the US and Mexico, Calexico has long been indie rock's dusty, crunchy sidekick, blending elements of Americana with Latin American style and instruments. As is breathlessly reported in every mention of 2012's Algiers, the Tucson duo's most recent full-length was raised in New Orleans, far from the band's origins. But despite the total scene change, the album stays true to Calexico's comforting songwriting prowess and light instrumental flourishes, like a pair of dirty, perfect-fitting boot cut jeans. Also keeping with Calexico tradition, the album maintains political undercurrents, named after a Louisiana neighborhood that was deeply affected by Hurricane Katrina. But beyond Algiers, Calexico has a stable of lovely albums, notably 2006's Garden Ruin and 2008's Carried to Dust. If you want to make like John Wayne, or even Troy Dyer, consider pulling up a stool to Calexico at the Fillmore. 9pm, $65. Fillmore, 1805 Geary, SF. www.thefillmore.com