Roland “Nightrocker” Fuentes offers the least ladylike “ladies’ night” I’ve ever seen. For girls who just wanna have fun — and by fun I mean slamming 50-cent tequila shots, watching half-naked dancers waggle their tits, and listening to rap-rock — the newly revamped Nightrocker Live offers good times in excess. If you equate “ladies’ night” with cheap cosmos and low-cal appetizers, however, this ain’t the place for you.
Nightrocker Live celebrated their reopening last Tuesday with the return of their Tattooed Ladies’ Night, recently voted Best Ladies’ Night (again) in our annual Best of San Antonio issue. It re-ignited an ambitious weekly line-up of regular Nightrocker programming to punch up SA’s lackluster mid-week nightlife scene, which also includes a reggae night on Wednesday and a comedy night on Thursday. Improvements made by Fuentes and his staff include repainting, new pool tables and a jukebox, and rennovated bathrooms. But the dude-heavy crowd hardly noticed, because up on stage there was a whole lot of shakin’ going on courtesy of the true ladies’ night attraction.
Each week the lusciously sardonic Katie Red of the Pastie Pops burlesque troupe hosts a revolving door for burlesque and cabaret performers at Nightrocker. Last week featured La Femme Fatale, an edgy troupe of three seemingly barely legal babes. As promised, these ladies were tatted up, slinking around to songs that ran the gamut from Marcy Playground’s “Sex and Candy” to Hugo’s bluegrass-y cover of “99 Problems.” I managed to catch a full dance by cowgirl-esque Mia Manic and a dominatrix-inspired one by Ivana Rafaela McMeans, both of whom used little more than a folding chair as a prop. That’s about as far as their performances stretched the imagination, from what I caught, although I have a feeling that the evening’s earlier efforts, before the effects of the free-flowing El Perrito tequila hit the dancers, were probably more coherent.
While high-concept their performances weren’t, La Femme Fatale were all cute in that Suicide Girls way, and in possession of bodies anyone could admire. Ditto their lingerie choices; sisters should start a side business as personal panty shoppers. Katie Red was just delightful as the world-weary host, as if Dorothy Parker reinvented herself as a strip-club announcer. According to Red, each week can feature different dancers (though it appears La Femme Fatale is a regular), and the show may stretch between 8 p.m. and midnight, usually with sets broken up by a musical act.
Last week it was my misfortune to catch The Chimpz, an L.A.-based band still worshipping at the altar of Limp Bizkit, with their sound cranked up to an unforgiving 11. When not hosting live music, the house DJs on Tuesday eve generally consist of DJ Dantes Prayer and a guest spinning industrial, goth, and ’80s underground tracks, among other sounds, which fits the evening pretty well, unlike the decidedly unsexy featured band. I was just glad that as a tattooed lady, I didn’t pay any cover (guys and non-inked gals pay $5). It did give me an excuse to order another 50-cent tequila shot (regularly $1) and take my accompanying Lone Star tallboy ($2.50 all the time) outside to join the majority of the customers.
Among the audience that night were artists, military men, heavy metal chicks, that guy who sells incense at clubs, and a cobbler named Garbage, but precious few women aside from those tapped to perform or support the evening’s entertainment. Everyone seemed about as respectful as you can be when you put such a testosterone-fueled crowd in a room with pasty-sporting boobies.
Not that the Femme Fatale women seemed to mind any offstage ogling. In fact, they happily posed for iPhone photos and acquiesced to some female-on-female drunken ass grabbing. Again, it’s hard to tell how much of that can be attributed to unbridled exhibitionism and how much to unbridled booze. By the time the Femme Fatales teetered off the stage after their last semi-chaotic group dance, I was paying my tab. There’s only so much fun this lady can handle on a Tuesday night.
605 San Pedro