Top venues for Indie fans

London is the UK's indie hotbed - Manchester and Liverpool will try and lay claim but purists know the truth... it's London, baby.

Getting into an indie club is easy... just show the bouncer your black nail varnish, skinny jeans and subversive T-shirt (featuring politics or a retro snack... but preferably both) - and you're in. Fail on any one criterion and you'll be marched to the nearest All Bar One where you'll undoubtedly be more comfortable.

With more indie venues than you could shake a battered Telecaster at - particularly in and around Camden - searching out the best can take an age, so allow us to provide a shortcut to what we consider to be some of the best...

The Amersham Arms
388 New Cross Road SE14 6TY
Region: New Cross
Nearest Station: New Cross

AIL Says: Anybody unfamiliar with the Amersham Arms has probably never been on a night out in New Cross. If you’re an indie music fan then that’s a sin. The student population of Goldsmiths make sure that the music policy remains as fresh and fun as the boisterous crowd who attend nightly.

  • OUR REVIEW 7/10
  • USERS 8/10
The George Tavern
373 Commercial Road E1 0LA
Region: Shadwell
Nearest Station: Shadwell (0.2 miles)

AIL Says: This might just be Whitechapel’s only rock and roll retreat and it is more than enough for the area. If it’s not encouraging people to smear (fake) blood over each other during messy indie Halloween nights it’s putting on new bands and making an almighty musical racket from the turntables.

  • OUR REVIEW 9/10
  • USERS 10/10
St Moritz Club
159 Wardour Street W1F 8WH
Region: Soho
Nearest Station: Oxford Circus (0.2 miles)

AIL Says: Home to Gaz’s Rockin’ Blues – London’s longest running weekly club night – the St. Moritz is almost royalty. It appeals to the students – particularly on Thursday nights – but its music policy makes it one of central London’s most consistent venues.

  • OUR REVIEW 7/10
The Boogaloo
312 Archway Road N6 5AT
Region: Highgate
Nearest Station: Highgate (0.1 miles)

AIL Says: Get ready to pose, pose and pose some more. Up in Highgate at the Boogaloo Bar everyone looks the part. And if they look indie and they act indie then they must be indie. You’ll always find a ramshackle night of action here and in truth the atmosphere is some kind of fun. There’s a handy terrace at the rear too.

  • OUR REVIEW 8/10
  • USERS 8/10
The Alibi
91 Kingsland High Street E8 2PB
Region: Dalston
Nearest Station: Dalston Kingsland (0.1 miles)

AIL Says: The Alibi is a mixture of tastes both bad and really bad at times but that’s why it’s so great. Hear anything from pop punk to boyband classics spun by DJs. Like the website says, ‘something good happens every night.’ And they’re right you know!

  • OUR REVIEW 8/10
The Lock Tavern
35 Chalk Farm Road NW1 8AJ
Region: Camden
Nearest Station: Chalk Farm (0.2 miles)

AIL Says: The Lock Tavern was spinning indie rock when most of us were still in our nappies bopping to the Bangles and it shows. The slick line-ups feature new bands and manage to snag live and DJ sets from established artists. Kitty, Daisy and Lewis were just one recent vintage to take to the decks.

  • OUR REVIEW 8/10
  • USERS 1/10
The Roxy
3 Rathbone Place W1T 1HJ
Region: Fitzrovia
Nearest Station: Tottenham Court Road

AIL Says: The Strokes, Taking Heads, Blink-182: these are the sounds of The Roxy and long may it continue. If you’re ever caught in a pickle and need an indie looking direction in which to turn then head off Oxford Street and into The Roxy. Pure unadulterated indie pop!

  • USERS 10/10
The Lexington
96-98 Pentonville Road N1 9JB
Region: Islington
Nearest Station: Angel (0.2 miles)

AIL Says: American bourbon bar below, indie club above. Between its relentless line-up of new and established bands and its collection of indie nights like White Light/White Heat there’s not a night that goes begging at The Lexington.

  • OUR REVIEW 8/10
The Old Blue Last
38 Great Eastern Street EC2A 3ES
Region: Shoreditch
Nearest Station: Bethnal Green (0.1 miles)

AIL Says: The Old Blue Last has hosted the likes of The Maccabees, Klaxons and The Horrors in the past. Chances are the band you see today will be next year’s one to watch. Live music almost nightly.

  • OUR REVIEW 8/10
  • USERS 7/10
22 Kingsland Road E2 8DA
Region: The City
Nearest Station: Hoxton (0.1 miles)

AIL Says: The indie venue’s indie venue, Catch is as divey as they come but that doesn’t hinder the quality of bands they put on. If it’s not live then you’re likely to find DJs spinning the likes of The Pixies, Violent Femmes and anything else jingly and jangly.

  • OUR REVIEW 7/10
  • USERS 8/10

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