Sure, there's no shortage of EDM clubs and nights in Hollywood these days (Avalon, Vanguard, Playhouse, Supper Club, Dim Mak Studios, … ). But, considering that ours is a celebrity-focused and rockist scene, it's quite a treat when a venue owner comes along and decides to open a space 100 percent designed for dance music and DJ culture. It still feels rare to us.
That's the case with Sound Nightclub, which opens its doors to the public tonight with one of L.A. Weekly's top-ranked DJs in the world, Sander Kleinenberg:
We recently caught up with Sound principal “Russian” Rob Vinokur, who provided us with some deets about this high-tech endeavor.
He described Sound as a mid-size venue focused on filling a void beyond the over-the-top superstar DJs of Saturday night.
Sound's interior was curated by Manhattan's iCrave firm. It will also have L.A.'s premier video-projection set-up, created with the help of VJ king Vello Virkhaus and designed to give the space a different environment on each night.
“EDM is on a weird curve these days where DJs are demanding huge money and it's hard on owners and patrons,” said Vinokur, who co-owns Muse Lifestyle Group (Playhouse, Chi Dynasty, Calle Tacos) with Kobi Danan and Mikayel Israelyan.
Sound, at a location that housed Element and, if memory serves, Vinyl, is 8,000 square feet and hosts the latest version of the state-of-the-art Funktion One Sound system. It only has capacity for 500.
That pales with other 1,000-plus cap venues such as Avalon and Vanguard, or even the 750 or so for sister club Playhouse. And the owners wanted it that way.
The idea is this: Now that EDM is pop and celeb venues have finally discovered the sound, there's room to hook Hollywood on local talent and more underground DJs. And, true to that form, the club will be open until 4 a.m. on weekend nights.
“A lot of what we're looking for is geared toward that deeper house, groovy house and tech sound,” Vinokur says. “Not as much fist pumping house music.”
He told us local legends Doc Martin and Droog, who DJ'd the venue's private opening Saturday, will be residents. Vinokur says it will also be looking to book some of the European scene's deeper tech-house titans such as Loco Dice and Sven Vath.
His DJ wish list includes …
… Jamie Jones, Loco Dice, Marco Carola, Sven Vath — not typical for L.A. They're DJs who can't always fill a large facility like Avalon and Vanguard but who have a following.
Vinokur describes a venue that like, say, Fabric London or Vath's Cocoon club in Frankfurt, attracts people via the sheer virtue of its quality vibe, interior production and consistently good music rather than booking the flavor of the moment.
He says Muse Lifestyle Group doesn't use promoters (though it does have a “partnership” with Monday Social at Playhouse), so it's not necessarily about theme or demographics.
“The greatest thing about this venue truly is the intimacy and the technology,” he says.
Sound is at 1642 N. Las Palmas Ave. Tickets for New Year's Eve can be had here.