Once again bars, clubs and venues will be trying to lure punters in at the end of October by slapping the word 'Halloween' onto flyers and posters - and why not? Your local nightclub or pub will be hosting the usual spooky fancy-dress 'fun night' (we've a few in our full listings - see below), but maybe you fancy something a bit more organized, such as a big-name DJ, a top-notch band or just an array of musical ghoulishness (but not Olly Murs, we're not that cruel). We start with a few interesting club-nights, followed by a couple of unusual gigs.
Neon Noise Project
Secret meeting places are all the rage with London hipsters and two events worthy of attention include this one with Neon Noise Project and Digitalism at the Hearn Street Car Park venue (not really that 'secret', just tucked away), hosting yet another 'fight-night special' on the 30th - £14-£16.50. The second night really is 'secret' and features the masked kings of rave, Altern 8 giving it large in an East London warehouse. Watch yer bassbins etc.. It's £8 for this Saturday night event.
The renowned DJ will appear at SW9's Dex Club alongside Eskimo Twins for a sure-to-sell-out evening called 'Slide's 80s Halloween'. There are plenty of other DJs lined up throughout the night, but the main attraction is the cool Justin Robertson. Tickets are just £8.
A heavy bass-frenzy is promised at Brixton's popular Plan B club on the 29th with dubstep icons Loefah and Darkstar performing DJ and live sets from 10pm onwards. Tickets are just £6 for a piece of South London's finest.
The arty venue Proud will be taken over on Halloween itself by the Criminal Records club-night experience with a difference, featuring crazy decorations, characters and prizes for the best costumes. The classic-titled snuff-horror film "Big Tits Zombie" will be shown, there will be a gaming zone, a tarot and spells room plus of course a load of music from numerous acts including Capelle. Tickets are only £5. Dress To Kill!
Circo Loco [circoloco]
The famous Manchester club has an exclusive appearance from Circo Loco on the 30th, backed up a further clutch of DJing talent. The night is called Alloween 4 and costs £12 admission. Funky house DJ support comes in the form of Matthias Tanzmann.
Not far from Sankeys is Sound Control which is running its own Audio Farm Halloween evening the night before (Friday) with main-man Pete Heller at the controls giving every one the 'Farmival' experience, as well as an Oxfam dressing-up area, a cinema, tech-house and Cocoon-pioneer Jamie Anderson and, er, a human-sized rabbit-warren. Tickets are from £5.
For things a little bit Slinky with a capital 'S' then head to Bournemouth's aptly named club and venue for the Slinky Halloween Ball. Big-name DJs include the enigmatic Mr Jules along with Simon Patterson and a good dose of Bang Bang, a full on set of mash-up and dubstep plus plenty of top DJs across two packed rooms. £15 admission for the Saturday event.
Staying with Manchester and it's over to the Ruby Lounge for an altogether more organic (and heavy) experience. Yes, clubbing isn't all about wiggling your ass and pulling sweaty faces - it's all about 'custard wrestling' - yep, you read right. Caged Asylum is a rock and metal club with a difference and their Halloween night is no exception. A 40K system will blast out the sounds while you witness (or join in) the 'wildest Caged craze yet', physically romping around in a vat of Bird's (the custard). They've also got sumo wrestling and mechanical rodeo bull lined up - I mean, what's wrong with a Boddy's and a scotch-egg for gawd's sake? £5 to get in.
The Puppini Sisters
You know the deal with Puppini Sisters by now - glorious 40s and 50s harmonies given a sassy twist by three lovelies - so how's about getting right in the swing with this excellent 'Vaudeville Rave and Halloween Ball' in Oxford? Taking place on the 23rd (Ok it's not quite Halloween but a great way to celebrate it early), the Puppinis are joined by a trio of truly worthy acts all paying homage to post-War Britain, adding their own humorous twist. Mr B The Gentleman Rapper, swing-turntablists The Correspondents and creators of 'swing-hop' and 'swing n bass', Dutty Moonshine. Tickets are £15.
Halloween wouldn't Halloween without the Horrors and the band have a DJ set and full-on fancy-dress party night on the 30th all ready for you at Bloomsbury Bowling Lanes in Russell Square, London. Apart from the obvious ten-pin action, the boys will play you a classic set of spooky tunes with scary face painting, popcorn, horror-films, table football, hula-hooping and the electro trio Luxury Living. Tickets are £5/£7.