A Quest for Thursday Night’s Ultimate Downtown Dance Party
Lizzy Von Stange
By Thursday, most of us are ready for the weekend and eager to release workaday tensions—what better way to accomplish this than to go dancing? Last Thursday I set out on a mission to find the best dance party in Downtown Albuquerque with my sidekick Miss Eva “Badass” Blaylock.
We ventured into unknown territory, hitting up every spot that typically has DJs. Our first stop was One Up Lounge (301 Central NW) where DJ Hump was posted up in the corner spinning mixes by DJ Quik, Mary J. Blige and Aaliyah. Unfortunately, at 10:45 p.m. the night was young and the floor was empty.
Next stop was the 405 Lounge (the dance club formerly known as Raw, located at 405 Central NW). While we were there, DJ Chil played the Black Eyed Peas and Sir Mix-a-Lot’s “Posse on Broadway.” Despite sweet late ’80s beats, there were only nine people in the house. During our brief stay we met Tamara, a bubbly 25-year-old student studying to be a broadcast journalist. She alerted us to a booty-shaking contest at The Library Bar & Grill later in the evening. That sounded entertaining.
We attempted to hit goth night at Room 406, downstairs at The Distillery (406 Central SW), but were informed by the door guy that the event was “on hold.” (But don’t fret goth-goers, KGB Klub is scheduled at Blackbird Buvette on Thursday, March 3.)
Fed up with no real action, we headed to old-faithful Burt’s Tiki Lounge (313 Gold SW), which usually has decent music—played by CLKCLKBNG—on Thursdays. At 10 minutes ’til midnight there was a long line. This place was a madhouse with college kids—a much less tolerable situation without alcohol, I might add (my quest was a sober one). To my surprise, on stage accompanying the DJs was a guy playing a bongo drum. We got down on the crowded floor for a song or two, but I was hauling a big-ass purse and jacket. Party tip: Pack lightly when heading out to dance.
We moved on to Lotus Nightclub and VIP Ultralounge (211 Gold SW) for Temptation Thursdays, an 18-and-over night featuring DJs AI and J-Roc, who play primarily hip-hop and club music. All three rooms were packed, and everybody was moving to pounding music. We didn’t stay long as we had to get to The Library by 1 a.m. for the booty shaking contest, and then end the night at Blackbird.
The Library (312 Central SW)—which, I must admit, I’ve enjoyed on previous occasions—was full of people, and we got there just in time for the contest. With a prize of $100 at stake, the 10 participating ladies were invited on stage to shake their rumps to hip-hop and Latin grooves mixed by DJ Justin Credible.
After the booty, we made it to Blackbird (a favorite dance spot for Eva and me, located at 509 Central NW) but last call was nigh and things were winding down. I liked what I heard though—I believe it was coming from DJ duo The HOST.
Determined to dance, we boogied over to Effex Nightclub for Circus Thursday. A decent amount of people were still there and spirits were high. Resident DJ Chris de Jesus was on point with progressive, house and club music such as Estelle’s “Freak.” At Effex we worked up a sweat for about 20 minutes before they threw us out (not literally).
We spent more time searching than dancing that night, but the research was worthwhile. Overall, Lotus and Effex had the best vibe, but I wouldn’t rule out Burt’s or Blackbird either when looking for Thursday night dance action.