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RINGING IN 2008

They dance Together as One

Revelers pack the Sports Arena for a glowing set of DJs to welcome the new year.

January 02, 2008|Liam Gowing | Times Staff Writer

No end in sight to the war in Iraq. Gasoline at record highs. A crisis in mortgage lending signaling a possible recession.

These were just a few of the big, ugly stories that plagued us in 2007.

Yet, judging from the utter bacchanalia that went down at the Los Angeles Sports Arena as some of the biggest DJs in the world gathered for the Together as One New Year's Eve party, it was a heck of a year.

Drunk to the point of invincibility, 27-year-old Floridian Colin Dooley summed up the party vibe in the crowded 20,000-person venue:

"I can't say enough good things about [event promoters] Insomniac and Go Ventures. They do this . . . right! One hundred dollars for an open-bar VIP ticket? I drank that much in beer already!"

It wasn't just the alcohol he was enjoying, of course, but also the music and the scenery -- chock-full of unusually scantily clad young women and their fellows, the majority of whom appeared drunk on something more than beer as they waved their glow sticks, chewed on pacifiers and danced up a storm.

The DJs enabled it all.

Up from 9 to 10:30 p.m., Lee Coombs brought the '80s and the aughts together as one with remixes of both Depeche Mode's "Everything Counts" and Bloc Party's "Banquet" that the crowd gulped down like candy.

Spinning from 10:30 p.m. to 2:30 a.m., Sasha and John Digweed were the main attractions. Quietly sandwiched between two giant video screens and a revolving pair of go-go dancers, the reserved icons still owned the writhing dance floor with their patented blend of simultaneously subtle and monotonous trance.

Up last, Dutchman Ferry Corsten may have had the coup of the night, though -- a rejiggered version of a U2 chestnut just perfect for the occasion. Well, almost perfect: Despite Bono's insistent vocal, all was not quiet on New Year's Day.

--

liam.gowing@latimes.com

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