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'Spin the Bottle' at the Roxy gets children on their feet and dancing
It's a surreal scene, even for a club as storied as the Roxy. It's another Monday night, another night for the club "Spin the Bottle," and there are scads of teenagers everywhere, clumped in their habitual packs, laughing, dancing, hugging and screaming at each other in recognition. Most of them are girls, dressed in a style that could be called American Apparel meets the many moods of Chloë Sevigny. There is a small circle of tiny boys who can't be more than 13.
Next to the stage is a "yard sale," an elaborate merch area stocked with an impressive range of Cobrasnake memorabilia, including T-shirts, stickers and a pile of 8x10 glossy photos of Mark "Cobrasnake" Hunter in a Speedo, lounging like Burt Reynolds in his classic Playgirl centerfold. The club's host and MC, Hunter strides through the room dressed in what looks like an early '80s b-boy version of the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. He's followed by a gaggle of girls who start dancing behind the main merch table.
Onstage, DJ Marshall Barnes is spinning a banging set of brutal techno that at times seems to overwhelm the young crowd, until he's interrupted by Hunter, who commands the stage with a microphone. He announces a "jerk off," a dance contest based on the current L.A.-based jerkin' dance sensation. As Barnes cues up a remix of the New Boyz smash "You're a Jerk," a couple amble onstage to compete for the grand prize of a cellphone provided by one of the night's sponsors. While the girl's moves are nothing new, the guy's effort is admirable, to the delight of the onlookers.
"Oh man, my little brother is up front getting his mind corrupted right now," laughs Tatiana Nahai, 20, as rapper Dirt Nasty (a.k.a. former MTV personality Simon Rex) takes over the stage to spew some X-rated rhymes. As kids impulsively leap on the stage to dance around him, a bemused bouncer gently nudges them off.
The brainchildren behind "Spin the Bottle's" teen mob scene are Ike and Manny Adler, ages 15 and 16, respectively. The children of Hollywood stalwart Lou Adler and the younger brothers of Roxy owner Nic and musician Cisco Adler, these affable youngsters represent the next generation of party promoters to grow up in the shadow of the Sunset Strip.
"We were setting up for the party, and Ike was like, 'I'm nervous about tonight,' " chuckles Nic Adler about his younger brothers' first foray into the night life game. "I told him welcome to my world. I've been nervous for the past 18 years. That just comes with the territory. But it's really exciting to see them stepping up into this role and carrying on the tradition. They're constantly turning me on to all kinds of new DJs and music. They're not just doing this to be cool. They love the music."
"Nic approached us about helping promote an event for kids our age," says Ike about the summer-long weekly.
"We want it to be the best party of the summer," Manny adds. "Every week a house party in a nightclub for all ages."
With guests such as Steve Aoki, Skeet Skeet and DJ Them Jeans already lined up to perform, the brothers are enthralled with the current underground electro scene.
"My dream guests would be Kid Cudi, Bloody Beetroots and Deadmau5," says Ike, while Manny lists his brother (along with partner Shwayze), DJ AM and emerging rap sensation Drake as his top picks.
"See, I don't even know who this Drake guy is, but if Manny says I should check him out, I'll check him out," Nic says. "They're so on top of what's new it's scary sometimes."
'Spin the Bottle' Where: The Roxy, 9009 W. Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood
When: 8 p.m.-close, Mondays
Price: $20 cash, $25 credit
Contact: (310) 278-9457; www.theroxyonsunset.com