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10 Things I Hate About Clubbing in Los Angeles

The city of angels might be a new mecca of dance music, but that doesn't mean it's all sun and games over here.

by VICE Thump
Mar 18 2015, 7:33pm

Los Angeles has established itself as a worldwide hub for electronic music over the past half decade. Most of your favorite DJs shack up here, the festival scene is amongst the best in the world, and the underground community is fervent and vast. But sometimes it seems as though the dance scene in LA succeeds despite itself, the city, and all of the people in it as part of a perpetual struggle of disappointment and chagrin. It wasn't easy to narrow this down, but these are the ten things I hate about clubbing in LA:

Read The THUMP Guide to Clubbing: Los Angeles


10. Selfies

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At every club you go to, there's an element that are less concerned with the music and more concerned with their social media feeds. Listen, we know you're really stoked about your nose job, but a blurry iPhone picture of your coked out derpface in the middle of the dancefloor isn't going to set Facebook alight in quite the manner you're hoping. Are you sure it's chill to be insufflating narcotics during your healing period anyway?

9. Vaping in Clubs

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You know what smells more obnoxious than cigarettes? That fruit-flavored disaster you're wafting over the crowd. If you're gonna set off your own version of a C02 blast, at least wait 'til the drop, bro. At least those who are truly committed to their carcinogenic demise go outside to have a cigarette.

8. Street Hot Dogs

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You know what's worse than a comedown? A comedown with diarrhea. Sure, bacon wrapped street dogs are something of a cultural institution in LA, but so is Skid Row and nobody celebrates that place.

7. The Celebrity Rinse Factor

Photo via AdventurousKate.com

The moment some distant Kardashian cousin shows up at your favorite nightclub, it's time to move on. Next time out, there'll be a line around the block of midwestern try-hards trying to bustle their way into the background of a 'pap snap' in the hopes of landing an extra role on Blacklist. It's just another example of clubbing in Los Angeles being more about being seen than seeing any music.

6. The One Day a Year It Rains


Imagine the most ridiculous lineup ever: Richie Hawtin, Claude VonStroke, Carl Cox, Skrillex, Michael Jackson b2b Jesus Christ, a hologram of Bob Moog performing magic tricks – It doesn't matter. If it's raining in Los Angeles, the club is going to be empty because Angelenos lose their shit when it rains.

5. Actors Doing DJ Sets

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Photo via DJMasterCourse.com

Every time a phrase like "Hey that guy from Sharknado is doing a tropical house DJ set" is muttered, Frankie Knuckles sheds a tear from heaven. We need another reality star DJ set like we need a Carnage biopic starring Anthony Anderson.

4. The Line at Exchange

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Editor's note: This is not actually a picture of the line at Exchange

In a cosmic dimension a long time ago, Beelzebub, Saddam Hussein, Jeffrey Dahmer, and Aleister Crowley got together and concocted the most brutal way to ruin your night – The result as the entrance line at Exchange. There are about seven guestlists and your name isn't on any of them, and as you wait patiently halfway down Spring St like a sucker, every hopped up suburban superstar that gets out of an Uber is going to cut their way to the front.

3. Police vs. Warehouses

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You know there are, like, actual crimes going on, right? LA's mercurial warehouse scene is constantly under fire from authorities. It doesn't matter if the address is released ten minutes before the party starts and you have to get blindfolded and walked into the venue, it's getting busted. The police somehow manage to shut down every single party to ever take place in the industrial district, but are unable unable to stop so much as a dognapping anywhere else.


2. The Risk of DUIs

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Photo via Bravo TV

In Los Angeles, DUIs are like headshots – everyone's got one and they make you look really fucking stupid. With a lack of public transport infrastructure in the city, this situation has long been an unfortunate reality. Thankfully, things are finally beginning to change on this front.

1. 2 AM Closing Times

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Dance music flourishes in the wee hours of the morning, when the normcores are well asleep and the weird kids can do what they do best – push culture forward from the margins. But clubs in LA close at 2AM, right when things are supposed to get interesting. The fact that there are taco stands in Los Angeles that regularly close after nightclubs is a damning indictment of this city's culture. You can't dance to carne asada. Imagine if Berghain closed at 2AM – by that time of the evening, Marcel Dettman's barely finished his breakfast strudel, let alone his closing set.

More From This Series:
10 Things I Hate About Clubbing in New York City
10 Things I Hate About Clubbing in Toronto
10 Things I Hate About Clubbing in London

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