Remember when B1 Maximum had decent gigs? Yeah, neither do I. And the Russian saying of "how you meet the New Year is how you'll spend it" suggests that 2008 will not be a strong year. The club's New Year gig features ABBA "tribute" band BJORN AGAIN (December 31, B1 Maximum. 22:00), which is actually one of many troupes working under this name. Also performing will be the vocalist of BRAVO, ZHANNA AGUZAROVA. Tickets start at 5,000 rubles.
If you'd like a little more cheese on your New Year, German pop band BAD BOYS BLUE (December 31, CDK MAI, 23:00) – who were actually never really popular outside the former Soviet Union – will be singing and dancing to a tape back-up. Tickets start at 2,000 rubles if you just want to get in, and significantly more if for some reason you want to eat there.
New year's top picks
Cool New Year
16 Tons – 22:00
As one of the most authentic-feeling British pubs in town, it's no surprise that 16 Tons has come up with the most enjoyable-sounding program. Frenchman Stephane Pompougnac headlines the ceremonies, with his house DJ sets that made the Hotel Costes famous and have endeared him to celebs as far and wide as Mick Jagger, Madonna, and Naomi Campbell. The club will also have a Jazz Dance ensemble playing, in addition to assorted other DJs. Tickets start at 5,000r for a party pass, and 9,000r rubles for a table.
The Show Must Go On!
Rai – 22:00
The elitny-est New Year's party in town features former Soft Cell singer Marc Almond, who we wouldn't generally think of as elitny, but rumor has it that Modern Talking wasn't available. In any case, Almond's probably the only musician to perform at Rai who's worked with personages as varied as Nick Cave, John Cale and Psychic TV. Ex-Army of Lovers Swedes Vacuum also perform, as does British DJ Paul Wilkins, of the Hed Kandi party scene. If you have to ask how much tickets cost, you can't afford one.
New Year's at Ikra
Ikra – 23:00
Our favorite nightclub meets 2008 with Nochniye Snipery, featuring the femme fatale of Russian Rock, Diana Arbenina. The main gimmick of the Snipers' New Year gig is that they're going to play in their pajamas, and they recommend all their true fans to come dressed this way, too. We definitely wouldn't' mind going to the lingerie party that is sure to ensue, although we hope the men in attendance will be a little more conservative in their sleepwear. Getting in for the gig will run you 2,007 rubles until midnight, or 2,008 after (dropping to a mere 500 after 2 AM), while table tickets start at 3,000 rubles.