Seattle has becoming a well-deserved acceptability as a abundant music city, with a full-service arrangement of clubs and concert halls, an another radio base envied civic (KEXP), added abundant bands than you can agitate a glowstick at and a active music columnist that tries to accumulate anybody on their toes.
That said, the concrete acquaintance of audition music in the Emerald Burghal isn‘t consistently the greatest. Abounding clubs are charmless atramentous boxes breadth the article is to advertise as abundant booze in as abbreviate a time as possible; acoustics are generally an afterthought.
But as Mick Jagger already sang, you can’t consistently get what you appetite — at atomic all of the time. What follows is a account of the best night spots for alert to alive bands and DJs so you can booty yourself, or your summer visitors, out on the town. Aloof don’t apprehend all the venues to alive up to the air-conditioned agency of the book on stage.
(Note that best Seattle clubs action all-ages shows, some added frequently than others. Those that do not are flagged actuality as “21 and over.”)
Rock and Pop
The Neptune Theatre: Refurbished as a concert breadth in 2011 by Seattle Theatre Group, which additionally operates the Paramount and Moore theaters, this 800-seat, 1921 best University Commune cine abode has become a prime destination, hosting anybody from Patti Smith to Shabazz Palaces. With its raked seating, arced balcony, admiral bar and — pride of STG — restored, aglow eyeballs of its namesake god of the underworld, the Neptune offers acquaintance with a blow of ’20s amplitude (1303 N.E. 45th St., Seattle; 877-784-4849 or stgpresents.org).
The Showbox: The 75-year-old Showbox walls would acquaint abounding belief if they could talk, from backward swing-era dancers cozying up during shows by Paul Whiteman to jailbait bedrock acclaim in the ’80s by the Gang of Four. Not to be abashed with its big brother, the Showbox SODO, this Pike Abode Market breadth academy is a multilevel acreage of abounding railings and cocktail bars. But whether you accelerate up to a table up top with your date, animation on the adaptable ball attic or sulk with a acquaintance over a alcohol in the Blooming Allowance bench (recently renamed Kerns Music Shop, afterwards a business that already active the space), you’re abiding to be alert to music on the acid edge. Seattle bedrock admirers afresh awash the abode to apprehend Lorde, aloof afore she got absolutely acclaimed (1700 First Ave. S., Seattle; 800-745-3000 or showboxonline.com).
Neumos: With its area on hipster Capitol Hill and 20-year history as Seattle’s axial bedrock club (it started out as Moe), Neumos absolutely should accept added than aloof seven walls (four downstairs, three for the loft). But avoid the music at your music-cred peril. Some of the best acts canyon through. In one anniversary beforehand this year, the Posies, Thermals, Hey Marseilles and Goodness all captivated alternating (925 E. Pike St., Seattle; 206-709-9467 or neumos.com).
Barboza: Best bodies use basements for storage, but Neumos has developed a gem in its underground, with cautiously lit sconces, a candied little stage, bar and booths in back. It’s a abundant abode to ball to a DJ or t advancing bands that can’t ample the big club admiral (925 E. Pike St, Seattle; 206-709-9442 or thebarboza.com). 21 and over.
The Crocodile: “The Croc’s” green, reptilian assurance has been a signature in the Belltown nightlife commune for 25 years. Opened in 1991 by Stephanie Gorgan (who after affiliated R.E.M.’s Peter Buck), this 475-capacity allowance is famous, amid added things, for accepting hosted not alone R.E.M. but Nirvana, Pearl Jam, Death Cab for Cutie and many, abounding others. Closed for a brace years in the aughts, the adapted Croc continues to host a beck of cutting-edge talent, from Tuneyards to Sean Lennon. The capital allowance is apparent but the vibe is consistently positive; it’s accessible till 2 a.m., and the wood-fired pizza is solid. In the comfortable aback bar, archetypal grunge-era photographs by Charles Peterson beautify the walls (2200 Second Ave., Seattle; 206-441-4618 or thecrocodile.com).
Cha Cha Lounge: If any club in Seattle corresponds to the chat “grotto,” this is it. Admitting not a alive full-time music club, per se, this atmospheric, below-ground cave below Bimbo’s Cantina is busy with aglow atramentous lights and Day-of-the-Dead décor and serves as Seattle’s actionable artist headquarters. That’s partly because of the bargain drinks and Mexican hors d’oeuvres, but additionally because you never apperceive who will appearance up for Monday karaoke or Sunday bounded bands (1013 E. Pike St, Seattle; 206-322-0703 or chachalounge.com). 21 and over.
The Tractor Tavern: Known in an beforehand apotheosis as the aloof New Melody Tavern, this aloof Ballard tav has become Seattle’s prime alt-country joint, admitting you’ll apprehend rock, folk, applesauce and apple music from time to time, too. Here’s breadth you can sit in rows of folding chairs (or angle at the abounding bar) and accept to Cahalen & Morrison, the Maldives or Sarah Jarosz, or beat your accomplice on square-dance night (5213 Ballard Ave. N.W., Seattle; 206-789-3599 or tractortavern.com). 21 and over.
The Paramount Theatre: Erected in 1928 as a admirable cine alcazar (where alive bands played afore and during the films), this 2,800-seat, two-balcony amphitheater was advised to a multimillion dollar, velvet-seat-to-chandelier advance aback in 1999. It’s one of the city’s gems. Host of musicals (“The Lion King”) bedrock and pop (Morrissey, John Legend) ball (Robin Williams, Jerry Seinfeld) and ball (Alvin Ailey), the Paramount can magically alter its arena attic seats to become a flat-floor ball anteroom or feast allowance (911 Pine St., Seattle; 877-784-4849 or stgpresents.org).
The Triple Door: Another attractive night spot, the Triple Door was an underground caricatural abode that had collapsed into decay until Rick Yoder, the artistic and acknowledged restaurateur who runs Wild Ginger upstairs, absitively to bandy a actor or so bucks into renovating it in 2003. With its tiered berth basement and atramentous tables, apparent complete system, starry-night ablaze appearance and Asian fusion-food service, the Triple Door has becoming its acceptability as one of the best elegant, flush venues in town. The club presents jazz, folk, blues, rock, pop and, in the spirit of its heritage, burlesque. In the entryway, alleged the Musiquarium, bounded bands absorb a active bar army (216 Union St. Seattle; 206-838-4333 or thetripledoor.net).
The Royal Room: Seattle keyboardist and artisan Wayne Horvitz and his wife, accompanist Robin Holcomb, opened this discreet Columbia Burghal pub (with grub) three years ago, and it’s become a above hangout, not alone for applesauce musicians and their families but for folkies and bluegrassers, too. The aliment is best avoided, but appropriate beer and wine can be had. If you’re there to apprehend the music, be abiding to assets a table by the stage, as the din by the bar is not accessory to alert (5000 Rainier Ave. S.; 206-906-9920 or theroyalroomseattle.com).
Bake’s Place: Proof that burghal Bellevue has an absolutely burghal downtown, Bake’s Abode — called for its adapted owner, Craig Baker — is an airy, affable allowance with a aerial ceiling, loft, aces complete arrangement and accomplished food. The agreeable book is a mix of jazz, pop, dejection and world, played by locals. Be on the anchor for Brazilian pianist Jovino Santos Neto, who is a approved (155 108th Ave. N.E., Bellevue; 425-454-2776 or bakesplacebellevue.com).
The Century Ballroom: Salsa ball lessons, anyone? Bachata? Swing? This is for you. With a animated ball floor, abundant angled pillars, aerial beam and two ballrooms, this Capitol Hill bazaar has been, to bread a phrase, “the home of blessed feet” for Seattleites for abounding years now. Acquaint announce the dances, sometimes accompanied by alive music, sometimes by recordings (915 E. Pine St., Seattle; 206-324-7263 or centuryballroom.com).
Q Lounge: For dancers with roots in disco, abode or trip-hop — and added currently, EDM — this spacious, high-tech, high-design -friendly Capitol Hill bar is the “it” lounge of the moment. Creative EDM DJs like Steffi and Alarm D’Void circuit on a advanced complete system. The lighting is as abundant a allotment of the ambient as the complete (1426 Broadway, Seattle; 206-432-9306 or qnightclub.com). 21 and over.
Dimitriou’s Applesauce Alley: Musicians who bout the apple will advisedly acquaint you that Dimitriou’s is one of the best applesauce clubs in the world. Applesauce Alley has abundant sightlines, a brittle complete arrangement and a date that accommodates aggregate from abandoned acts to big bands. A full-service, sit-down restaurant with good, if pricey, food, and a abounding band of wines and cocktails, the club has an upscale, genteel vibe — abundant for a date. The music calendar appearance not alone jazz, but bland jazz, alarm and apple music (2033 Sixth Ave., Seattle; 206-441-9729 or jazzalley.com).
Paul de Barros (206-464-3247 or [email protected]) covers music at blogs.seattletimes.com/soundposts/ or on Twitter @pdebarros
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