She blinded me with Dirty South science; Mess around with old soul and the Castro

For well over a decade, U.K. expatriate Thomas "Dolby" Robertson has been a trailblazer in bringing music to the Internet (which would sound sort of absurd if it wasn't the truth). He also founded Beatnik, a San Mateobased technology company that creates software and tools for mobile phones. And, oh yeah, he's the genius who gave us "Hyperactive" and "She Blinded Me With Science" in the early '80s, the biggest of dozens of his tunes that inadvertently built a blueprint for later electronic experiments. Pity, then, that few have dared to jack Dolby's instantly likable persona (or approximate something like his happy-go-lucky strangeness), instead retreating behind their computer screens to twiddle knobs all night. Tonight's show will fuse personality and machines with just the right dose of humor. Expect Dolby to perform material from throughout his catalog, with a live twist that varies the arrangements. Italy's Bochum Welt, a veteran producer signed to Aphex Twin's Rephlex label, will also appear, and resident DJ Safety Scissors will man the decks when Dolby headlines this month's installment of "Eggs" on Thursday, March 9, at Mighty; call 762-0151 or visit www.mighty119.com for more info. -- Tamara Palmer


440 Castro (the tame name of the club formerly known as Daddy's) has experienced a revamping in more than moniker. Its conscious catering to a music-savvy demographic couldn't have better timing, since watering holes like the Bar on Castro, Badlands, and the Café follow the same formula: little to no emphasis on the music, save a loud pop diva's bombastic and fractured remix on the turntables. 440's Thursday night weekly "CDXL" is part of the refreshing new wave to hit the 'hood, where the tunes are as diverse as the club's mixed-age crowd. (A hipster coup in the Castro, if you will.) DJ Underdog focuses on funky electro and pop beats, which dominate the night, along with a bit of bouncy '80s rock thrown in for good measure. And although you will no longer find a sleazy backroom of wandering hands here, a "go-go dancer" (read: male stripper) will be featured each week for your, um, enjoyment. Call 621-8732 for more information. -- Brock Keeling


Austin's Rapid Ric grew up on the West Texas/Mexico border, and first honed his turntable chops in the real Dirty South. Today, this community-minded DJ is pretty much the go-to guy for many of the Lone Star State's top rappers when they need live backup. They also call him "The Mixtape Mechanic": His "What It Dew" series, branded to look like the Mountain Dew logo, is particularly popular and will soon lead to a proper album. Here's the perfect opportunity to learn about authentic Texan DJ techniques -- such as songs that are "chopped & screwed" -- and hear a lot of solid talent that hasn't yet penetrated the local airwaves. Rapid Ric makes his first Bay Area appearance on Friday, March 10, at Studio Z. KMEL's lovely DJ BackSide, Ross Hogg (aka SF Weekly contributor Ross Viator), and Havoc (of drum 'n' bass party "Compression") will also appear; call 252-7666 or visit www.studioz.tv for more info. -- Tamara Palmer


Weekend club nights are typically reserved for the after-work 9-to-5 crowd or the bustling bridge-and-tunnel throngs who don't care so much about the music as they do about getting smashed. But new Monday night weekly "The Messaround" at Annie's Social Club (formerly the Cherry Bar and Lounge) is the perfect antithesis to such a scene. DJs Russell Quan and Soulciter seamlessly spin Motown hits, soul and rock rarities, and rocksteady, a run of genres that could be rendered limp in lesser hands. And with the majority of Annie's nights now showcasing live music, expectedly the DJing duo's aesthetic retains a rock edge while remaining dance floorfriendly. The "Messaround" crowd ranges from the boisterous service-industry set to musicheads looking to hear bands too new or unknown to get booked on a coveted weekend night. Call 974-1585 or visit www.anniessocialclub.com for more information.-- Brock Keeling

 
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