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CLUBS in and around Orange County

Harnessing Energy

The leather forecast calls for electric storms and the thunder of hard-core industrial goth.

July 23, 1998|GENA PASILLAS | SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

Proud of your tattoos and bellybutton ring? Flaunt 'em among friends at Club Harness, a Wednesday-night promotion at the Tiki Room in Costa Mesa.

The Tiki Room's decor adapts well to the Club Harness transformation. Black cloth draped over the lighting creates a dungeon-like atmosphere, and the cool tiki dude with glowing red eyes fits in.

Magnificent painted flames roar all around, but ventilation from fans and windows will remind you that you're not in Hades, though the clientele might make you wonder.

With hard-core industrial goth blasting, compliments of DJ Papa Duck (Matt Freyaldenhoven), you'll know you've found one of Orange County's few subculture outlets.

No, this isn't a secret meeting; it's only a nightclub. Anyone can attend: All you need is an open mind. And on recent night it seemed the twentysomething crowd had no problem blending in.

Be forewarned: Patent-leather bras and fishnet stockings aren't required, but if you just got off the Chitty-Chitty-Bang-Bang bus--or if you have a heart condition--Club Harness may not be for you.

Devo's nerdy plea to "Whip It" couldn't compare with Club Harness' implied roughness.

Leather goodies from alternative boutique Wicked Chamber are for sale. (The paraphernalia is for use in private, not at the club, please.)

The red-and-gray checkered dance floor and the strobe lights may induce vertigo, but you'll have no trouble finding a seat to regain your brain.

Need guidance? Maybe the bikini-clad gothic go-go gal can show you around.

Club Harness also has a licensed body piercer. "Rob-o" says he safely pierces any part of the body. Prices range from $10 to $30, not including jewelry.

(If you decide to puncture something, be sure not to indulge in alcohol until after your surgery--you don't want to spill a pint of precious plasma.)

When it is time for celebration, you'll be ecstatic about the full bar: imported and domestic beer and wine ($3-$3.50), call drinks ($4.50) and premium calls ($5.50).

You don't have to wear rubber to feel worthy--or unworthy. As long as you're 21 or older, you're welcome in the Harness.

Voyeurs can show up in jeans and observe the festivities, watch old episodes of MTV's "Aeon Flux" or test their skills at billiards and video games.

Can't muster the courage for a Wednesday? Worry not. The Tiki Room accommodates middle-of-the-roaders with Tuesday Ladies Night, featuring $1 drinks all night, and bands usually perform Fridays.

Soon Club Harness will appear only on the last Saturday of each month. Promoter Scott Tucker realizes the difficulty of getting a crowd of self-mutilaters to meet each week. The anticipation should be exquisite.

BE THERE

Club Harness is Wednesdays, 8 p.m.-2 a.m., at the Tiki Room, 1700 Placentia Ave., Costa Mesa. Cover: $5. 21 or older. Information: (714) 548-3533.

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