The Top 10 Best Club Sound Systems in San Francisco
Union Square might not be the first place that comes to mind when thinking about club culture. Yet the tourist mecca can provide some excellent sound (and respite) if you know where to look. Located just off Stockton, on Maiden Lane, Vessel is one such club. Inside, it's an intimate and lounge-y situation, with ultramodern decor that features surreal lighting and indoor foliage. Hop on the dancefloor and you'll enjoy a combination of good room acoustics and the club's state-of-the-art Funktion-One speaker array. Vessel puts its system through its paces at the guest-centric/tech-house oriented Thursday night Base parties, with a revolving cast of guests that's so far included the likes of Seth Troxler, Sasha, and Art Department.
Opened in 2003, Mezzanine has long since become an integral part of the city's nightlife, with performances by the likes of Carl Craig, LCD Soundsystem, and the Knife. Sandwiched between Sixth Street and Mint Plaza, it's a cavernous bi-level space in a former printing plant. Powering this large interior is the first Funktion-One sound system to be installed in a San Francisco club, a move that seems to have inspired a trend. Featuring the full acoustic might of four subsonic woofers, when the bass drops at Mezzanine, the floor nearly falls with it. For the full experience, head to the club for one of Dirtybird's quarterly parties.
Kahley Avalon Emerson BeatBox
A fresh take on an old venue, BeatBox is the name of the latest incarnation at 314 11th St. While previous iterations never seemed to make it, we have a feeling BeatBox will stick around. Step inside and you'll notice the place has been spruced up a bit, both visually and sonically. Most important, however, is the club's Danley Sound Labs installation. The first of its kind on the West Coast, this system boasts a clean sound that's so far provided the perfect stage for the extended techno journeys on offer at As You Like It (winner of SF Weekly's "Best Promoter 2012") and the occasional weekend workouts of Housepitality.