Find Love Week alternatives in "Meat," "Charlie Horse," "Pussykat," and Nouvelle Vague

Lots of club promoters try to lure in patrons with drink specials, but few really give people what they want: free meat. Luckily, the aptly named "Meat" has recognized this void, offering a tasty variety of flesh (burgers, ribs) while DJs mix a blend of dark, pounding dance sounds (mainly industrial and the European strain known as EBM, for "electronic body music"). It's the antithesis of San Francisco's twee house-music parties, and hallelujah for that. "Meat" is 3 years old (the club, not the food served there), and September marks two years of hosting monthly parties at the DNA Lounge. This month's throwdown takes place during San Francisco Fetish Week, and to mark the occasion there will be a battle of the sexes -- sorry, make that a "gender grudgematch" -- as boy DJs (Devon, Mitch, Netik, Ritter Gluck) square off with girl DJs (Apex, Blau, Jessic[k]a, Jordan) on Thursday, Sept. 22; call 626-1409 or visit for more info.-- Tamara Palmer

Nearly a year ago, hordes of people could be found tearing up the streets of San Francisco, violently ripping out clumps of hair, crying foul over the shocking results of the Miss Trannyshack Pageant. OK, so that's a wee bit of an overstatement, but in some circles there really was an exaggerated firestorm of controversy sparked when the stellar Anna Conda ended up the night's surprise winner, with Kiddie, who branded her arm during the talent portion of the competition, receiving second runner-up. But God works in the most mysterious of ways, because today you can find these two holding court on Friday nights at different venues in the city, vying for your attention yet again.

At one end of the cafeteria, Miss Anna Conda puts on "Charlie Horse" at the Cinch in the very crack-sy Tenderloin. There, electro, rock, drugs, alcohol, and blackouts take center stage, with your host sitting behind the decks helping to helm one of the better parties to attend on a Friday night when meeting up with your favorite pals to destroy your livers. Meanwhile, at the cool-kid lunch table sits the alarmingly brilliant Kiddie. In the equally crack-sy Lower Haight venue Underground SF we have "Pussykat" -- another great place to drink away your hard-earned rent money while hunting for male game. It's perfect for those of you who frown upon the gay saturation of the Castro and SOMA, but who, oddly enough, don't seem to mind stumbling home drunk around the projects (er, I mean affordable housing). DJs TCKat, Liesl, Hiro-C, and Juanita More pump out rock 'n' roll to the shy boys and drag kids flailing about on the dance floor. Hit both venues and you have the elusive perfect night out; call 776-4162 (the Cinch) or 864-7386 (Underground SF) for more info. -- Brock Keeling

With their self-titled 2004 debut, Frenchies Marc Collin and Olivier Libaux, who call themselves Nouvelle Vague, hit on an unusual formula that they continue to practice: translating songs from the punk and new wave eras into sumptuous bossa nova and jazz arrangements with chic French vocalists. In their capable hands, Joy Division's "Love Will Tear Us Apart" becomes a sassy Latin hip-shaker instead of a dour vein-opener, Dead Kennedys' "Too Drunk to Fuck" is playful and inquisitive rather than icky and belligerent, and Depeche Mode's "Just Can't Get Enough" breaks its electro-pop shackles to become a scatty jazz number. Sure, it's a novelty, but Collin and Libaux's keen ear for a groove makes it a worthwhile one. S.F. band Scrabbel, which mixes traditional instruments like the clarinet with 808 drum machines, opens for Nouvelle Vague on Saturday, Sept. 24, at Bimbo's; call 474-0365 or visit for more info. -- Tamara Palmer

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