There’s no place to lose yourself in the indie band scene than New York City. The sheer amount of people squashed into this metropolis means you’ll have all kinds of talent, levels of creativity, and perhaps some truly revolutionary acts scratching around the underground.
NYC’s small music venues make for a veritable treasure trove of indie music of all genres. Many of these places on our list of the top five indie music venues hold nothing back in hosting all kinds of acts.
See below our list of the five best venues to see indie music and discover your next favorite local indie band creating on their own terms.
This divey restaurant and bar is the epitome of indie music venue. Crusty, vulgar, and set up with a great sound system, shows in the backroom here have become a mainstay of the Brooklyn indie band scene.
Bands that play here are truly local. Many of them play the local circuit endlessly, and the venue has created a following because of that. Throw in some of the cheapest drinks you can find in NYC, and you have yourself a true blue indie music venue.
140 WILSON AVE BROOKLYN, NY 11237 – 347-413-8801
2. Saint Vitus
A small but popular music venue for all kinds of heavy, loud, crazy artists, Saint Vitus is more than a place for live music.
Established in 2011, Saint Vitus is a metal bar mecca on Manhattan Avenue where you can rock out to exclusive shows in a sleek industrial atmosphere.
1120 MANHATTAN AVENUE, BROOKLYN, NY 11222
3. 538 Johnson
Essentially a warehouse of performance spaces, 538 Johnson is the truest form of underground music venue you can find. With shows being promoted mainly by word-of-mouth, you have to know somebody who knows somebody to find this spot.
One of the incubators of the infamous NYC noise music scene, you’ll have a chance to catch some truly novel underground performances. If you’re looking for something different, do not sleep on 538 Johnson.
538 JOHNSON AVENUE BROOKLYN, NY 11237
4. The Ho_se
Small, literally underground, and known for its high-energy shows, The Ho_se is not a place to take a date.
Featuring everything from psych rock to punk, to noise, hardcore, and everything else under and over the sun, the Ho_se has become one of the best kept secrets of the DIY underground indie band music scene. Bring your earplugs – this place tends to get loud and packed real quick.
28 LAWTON STREET #1 BROOKLYN, NY 11221
If what you’re looking for is experimental music, then look no further than this spare room attached to a bowling alley.
Filled by local and touring musicians, the scene at The Spare Room is insular, singular, and altogether out there. But don’t let that scare you – come with an open mind and you’re sure to feel the exhilaration of this defining establishment in underground music.
200 N 14th STREET BROOKLYN, NY 11249