The French house DJ and producer Cedric Gervais will headline Belly Up tonight, coming to the intimate 450-capacity club following weekend gigs at Marquee New York and Hakkasan Las Vegas. Those two venues are among the most prominent and taste-making dance clubs in the world. And, for the stretch of nights around the holidays and New Year’s, Belly Up likewise makes a case as an electronic music epicenter.
The two-week stretch straddling New Year’s included a set by homestate heroes Big Gigantic on Sunday, followed by Gervais on Monday night, deep house producer ZHU on Wednesday, a co-headlining set with the duo Bob Moses and “queen of deep house” Nora En Pure on Sunday, followed by a two-night New Year’s Eve run by future bass producer Flume. On New Year’s Day, it’s Emancipator followed in the first weekend in January by BoomBox and Dillon Francis.
This starry EDM lineup, during Aspen’s glitziest and busiest winter period, puts Belly Up in a league with premier international dance clubs.
But the venue isn’t aiming to be a DJ destination alone, said Belly Up’s David Goldberg, noting that a two-night set by the rock band Third Eye Blind is wedged between the big Christmas-New Year’s electronic shows and that the club hits an array of electronic sub-genres. The club, he said, is agnostic to genre and aims now — as it has in its 15 year history — to simply book the best live acts in pop music, which in recent years has been dominated by electronic music and hip-hop.
“We’re not trying to book big electronic shows, we’re just trying to book the biggest shows, period,” Goldberg said. “It doesn’t matter to us whether it’s electronic — we’re looking for the best and the coolest.”
Flume’s much-anticipated New Year’s Eve set marks just the second time that the club has booked an electronic act for it its New Year’s Eve show (the French duo Justice headlined last year), which followed well-received Christmas-New Year’s performances from major electronic acts like Kygo, Thomas Jack, Odesza, Martin Garrix and Diplo.
The club is also in the midst of its 15th anniversary series, for which Belly Up tagged 15 winter shows as part of its “BXV”celebration (the Galena Street sign for the venue has been replaced temporarily with a “BXV” one). It culminates over X Games weekend — when the club opened its doors in 2005 — with shows by Illenium, the Chainsmokers, Alesso, Rae Sremmurd and Bazzi.