Sneaky Pete’s, Edinburgh
Located on the bustling vein of Edinburgh nightlife that is Cowgate, Sneaky Pete’s is difficult to miss but snugly tucked away beneath the arch of George IV Bridge. As a poky, sweaty room that can hold 100 heads, most gigs will be a squeeze but for the many fans of Sneaky’s that’s a large part of the appeal.
Having existed in many incarnations here since the 70s, it is an increasingly important establishment in a city of dwindling gig venues for young crowds – despite its size, it hosts the best up-and-coming bands, artists and DJs from all over the UK and beyond, many of whom have gone and will go on to see huge international success. Thomas Jack, Avec Sans, Frankie Rose, Diet Cig and locals The Spook School are all playing in the next couple months.
Leith Depot, Edinburgh
With its deep burgundy walls and dark wood panelling, the Leith Depot is your typical backroom pub venue, accessed through an unassuming side door in the bright restaurant-bar downstairs. Lying the end of Leith Walk, it’s not the most central venue, but it is a great little spot for catching young indie upstarts.
The legendary Barrowland Ballroom has stood proudly in east-central Glasgow since 1934, and could earn itself a place on any gig guide based on local lore alone. Everything about the venue is wonderful, from the magnificent 60s stairhall with lyrics on each step to the glowing ceramic stars on its domed ceiling and original sprung floor (designed for maximum comfort and bounce when dancing btw).
The rush of spotting the huge neon Barrowlands sign looming in the distance as you make your way down Gallowgate before a gig is hard to beat – the combination of the venue and the Glasgow crowd makes for a rollicking night. The greatest names in musical history have graced the stage too: Bowie, The Rolling Stones, Oasis, Pixies, etc. Upcoming gigs include LCD Soundsystem, Public Service
By Ruth Murphy
La Belle Angele, Edinburgh
The unassuming appearance of La Belle Angele gives no hint to the venue’s legendary status. The dingy entrance way, which seems to cower beneath the Cowgate, leaves no traces of the likes of Oasis and Radiohead who have once passed through it.
A faulty fuse in 2002 is a lasting testament to this statement.
The resulting fire although devastated the bricks and mortar, did not deaden the spirit of the place which returned in 2014.
Whilst La Belle has had to, like most venues, give into the popular demands of university students like ourselves, it still retains some of the gritty atmosphere of its original days with its bare walls and low ceiling.
Look out for the Ruts DC coming up later this month who are sure to bring back some of that gruffness and lifeblood. In this way, La Belle very much exists as one of the last bastions of Edinburgh musical and cultural heyday.
A debunked warehouse on the periphery of Glasgow. This shell of a venue hosts a whole range of events, showcasing both music and art with concrete walls offering a blank canvas for some unique performances. The Black Angels and King Krule will be among the highlights during this semester.
Always full, this central hive is a frequent with locals. Offering a much more intimate setting in comparison to the SSE, the 02 Academy, and the 02 ABC, Broadcast features smaller bands, both UK and international. Check out HMLTD, TOPS, and Little Cub are among the array. Grab some cheap tickets and some homemade kimchi at the Korean culinary residency inside for a guarenteed fun night.
King Tut’s Wah Wah Hut
“Quite possibly the finest small venue in the World” -NME. The Libertines, Primal Scream, The Strokes, and Oasis (where thery were famously signed by Alan McGee) have all graced its stage.
By Angus Barrett