It's back to school for university and college students, which means a huge influx of people looking to party their student loans away. Luckily, almost any musical desire can be satisfied in Toronto's clubs and bars. Club Pulse recommends some of the weekly events (generally much cheaper and more intimate than one-off parties) for meeting new friends. Here's a day-by-day primer.
IV Lounge hosts Vinyl Vermouth with DJ Shingo, a deep house and garage night that features discount martinis to start off your week. IV Lounge is usually free, and the musical programming is all over the map, hitting most urban genres at some point in the week. For more soulful house, check out Mellow Mondays at Nasa or Bumpin' with Andy Roberts at the Apothecary. On the live side, the Monkey Mob at Lava do a jazz-funk-house thing each week. If you're looking to get out of the lounge and dance, check out Martini Mondays at Bauhaus, where DJ Alvaro spins Latin house.
For your fix of live jazzy funk, check out Shugga at Lava, with Divine Earth Essence and DJ Roland. The Hooch and Gypsy Co-op host Salon 817, a deep house and rare groove night. For the hiphop heads, check out Footwork with DJ Fase at Nasa. This is another low- or no-cover bar that features a wide mix of dance music from house and hiphop to drum 'n' bass and techno.
The big clubs start waking up around midweek, and cover charges start growing, too. For Those Who Know... is at Tonic and features regular big-name DJs. Around the corner is Body Roc at System Soundbar, a drum 'n' bass night with a whole bunch of locals. If you're trying to avoid the harder stuff, check out Flirt at the Living Room with Carl Allen for choice hiphop, R&B, classic house and funk. For the lounge vibe, check out Abacus at Ciao Edie, spinning deep house and garage.
If you're into funk, soul and hiphop, you've got a lot to choose from. Uproc at Una Mas is the big one, often featuring special guests alongside residents John Kumahara, Mike K, Serious and Kola, who spin an eclectic mix that sometimes hits disco and house but rarely dwells there for long. On the more hiphop side of this equation, Element hosts Touch with DJs Fase and Hangman. Even System Soundbar gets in on it with Superfunk, although it tends to the jiggy side a bit. Themes And Variations at Gypsy Co-op with A Man Called Warwick substitutes Afrobeat and Brazilian for hiphop, and favours very rare funk and soul. If you're looking for house, check out Wide at Liquids. They also sometimes drop some dub reggae sets. On the live side, check out the Audiophiles, a jazz-house-disco band at Revival.
For the house heads, Glow (previously Heart And Soul) at Aria features Dino and Terry plus occasional international guests. Also on the house tip is Flow at Liquids, a no-cover weekly with the Poundhouse crew. Most of the other places rotate their Fridays between a few monthlies, with Lincoln and Nasa featuring some of the better and cheaper nights.
If you're looking for something eclectic and mellow, check out King Curtis at the Apothecary. Aria hosts Back To Basics with Peter and Tyrone and Ali Black, plus occasional international guests on the house side. Shifting Gears at Una Mas with Jason Palma and Dee Jay Nav is the soulful house and garage party to check out, but get there early -- it tends to reach capacity. Life and System Soundbar both host late-night hard house events if you want it bangin'. Peace Harvest plays house at Lincoln, a small, swank lounge.