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CLUB REVIEW : It’s No Mystery: The Palace Offers a Reliable Showcase

If you’re heading out to catch a show by one of the hot pop acts of the moment, there’s a good chance you’re en route to the Palace.

The spacious Hollywood nightclub has consistently booked acts that reflect the mood of the times, and most of the current wave of new punk--from national acts such as Reverend Horton Heat to local newcomers Wax--have recently performed on the Palace’s stage, much to the delight of their younger fans (you don’t have to be 21 to attend the shows).

It’s an unusually cold venue, however, and the Palace’s soul seems to be lost somewhere within its cavernous walls. The club is such a well-oiled machine that there’s little room for the human touches that add to an evening’s suspense. If your name’s supposed to be on a guest list, it most likely is. The ticket-takers and the security are always polite. The performances generally start when they’re supposed to, and a list of show times is always visible at the entrance.

The guards keep people moving on the large stairwells, preventing clogged arteries. The balcony seating allows guests to get away from the dance floor, and the VIP lounge--which isn’t always just for the privileged--allows an escape from the main dance floor. In addition, the recently enhanced sound system doesn’t allow any room for complaint.

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Basically, the Palace is an excellent club--just not a particularly exciting one.

* The Palace, 1735 N. Vine St., Hollywood. 16 and over (18 and over during Friday and Saturday dance parties). Cover varies. (213) 462-3000 or (213) 467-4571.


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