On October 20, DJ Mag revealed its annual Top 100 lists, an accounting of the best in the business when it comes to clubs and DJs. But while Vegas is considered a major destination for cutting-edge nightlife—all of the Top 10 DJs play here on the regular—I had to click through 79 clubs from places like Moscow, São Paulo, Berlin, Miami, Denver and Sharm El Sheik, Egypt before finally hitting on a hometown hot spot. When I did, it was the relatively young Marquee Nightclub, coming in at No. 80, with Encore Beach Club following it up at 91. Of course, last year, not a single Vegas venue made the list, so these rankings are something to be proud of. But they’re also a reminder that there’s a big, bumping world of nightlife out there, and Vegas still has room to grow.
And so too does the DJ Mag Top 100 DJ list. On October 28, DJ and writer Hanna Hanra issued a critique of the list in The Guardian, noting the conspicuous absence of women on the annual list that’s a reference point for the nightlife industry. As she points out, just one woman has made the list in the last four years, Claudia Cazacu, No. 93 in 2010. Hanra also cited her own experiences hitting the glass ceiling as a female DJ in a notorious boys club. “I always thought that term applied to women in skirt suits in big, windowed office blocks—not those whose working day starts at 11 p.m. and involves sticky floors and a disco ball.” And she’s not the only one who feels that way. The story garnered well over 100 comments and racked up 2,000 Facebook recommends. Which means it’s time to remind female DJs in Las Vegas—women like DJ88 and Mika Gold and those still experimenting in their bedrooms or at house parties—that there’s an audience for you. And one day, there’ll be a list that shows it.
It’s a match made in indie EDM heaven: Rivers Cuomo and Steve Aoki. The friends teamed up on the first single off Aoki’s new artist album Wonderland, set to debut around Christmas. “Earthquakey People,” released on iTunes last week, is an exuberant party anthem with all the right elements to earn it regular rotation status on the Strip in no time. Maybe we’ll get lucky and Cuomo will show at one of Aoki’s upcoming Vegas appearances November 18 at Surrender or November 21 at XS. Until then, we’ll just have to make do with the indie rock hero singing, “Don’t be afraid to dance” while falling through nothing in a space suit. Seriously.