Better to celebrate in a secure establishment, where the alcohol comes at a price (there is a cap-off incentive for you overindulgent drinkers), and the music pumps loud and hard — plus, you won't have to invite the neighbors to keep them from complaining, you don't run the risk of eviction, and the coppers can't pop your party balloon. Besides, holiday spirit invariably incites downright dancing, which you can't do in a crowded, carpeted living room. So get a comfortable pair of kicks on and get your rocks off this weekend with the best damn DJs in town.

Friday, December 20: Deepfeel, DJ Epstine at Half-Time Sports Bar. 'Tis the season of the dreaded gift set: spice racks, shiny martini shakers, silver fondue pots sooned to be dulled with dust. Jaime Lopez — Deepfeel — has something better for you to dip into: his funk-tional "melting pot of good grooves." Lopez brings da funk, fused with house and disco, to the friendly Northwest side neighborhood dive. DJ Epstine opens with a solid good gift set of contemporary house.

Saturday, December 21: DJ Dan, Synthetic, DJ Mac at Club Fuel. I love crisp, winter air, but my breathing orifices are so congested with congealed phlegm that I can barely muster a weak wheeze. The lack of oxygen to my brain has me entertaining visions of a West Coast wonderland: trees swaying in a light breeze; the warm sun on my shoulders; snow-capped mountains on the horizon. I'm settling for imported air this season, cool waves of sound spinning off DJ Dan's turntables — escaping for at least one evening. A top techno DJ during the peak of LA's rave scene in the early '90s, DJ Dan later broke out in the Bay Area with house sets. Influenced by funk and hip-hop fusion with breaks and melodies, DJ Dan has since fine-tuned signature West Coast house to an artform, and is one of electronic music's prominent producers. The night opens with local DJs Synthetic and DJ Mac.

Sunday, December 22: Ron-E, DJ Shawn Jackson, Synthetic, Boss at Far West Rodeo. After successfully missing two Austin appearances in the last year, I was looking foward to seeing Miami-based trance DJ George Acosta live in action. But it looks like this time I won't even have to try to miss the show: Acosta cancelled his SA gig. DJ Ron-E turns the tables on disappointed tranceheads, stepping up to headline at Far West Rodeo, a colossal country corral that (thankfully) loses its quaint Western trappings in the dim lighting. Ron-E will spin an extended set of progressive, hard-edged trance. DJs Shawn Jackson, Synthetic, and Boss open.

9pm, Friday, December 20
Half-Time Sports Bar
8931 Wurzbach, 696-5411

9pm, Saturday, December 21
$10 21 and up, $12 18 and up (before 11pm)
$15 21 and up, $18 18 and up (after 11pm)
Club Fuel
1305 East Houston, 472-FUEL

9pm, Sunday, December 22
$10 21 and up, $15 16 and up
Far West Rodeo
3030 NE Loop 410 @ I-35, 646-9378


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