152 Orchard St., nr. Rivington St.; 212-673-3410
The bar’s Saturday-night party, Tiswas 2.0, comes with a rich pedigree thanks to past performances from Nick Zinner and the Strokes. But on any given night, you could be gazing through the smoke-machine fog at the next New York buzz band.
21 E. 36th St., nr. Madison Ave.; 212-684-0215
A unique array of local jazz, experimental, and world musicians are discovered here nearly nightly—from a solo violinist to the weekly Slavic Soul Party, featuring a nine-piece Balkan Brass Band.
Pete’s Candy Store
709 Lorimer St., nr. Richardson St., Williamsburg, Brooklyn; 718-302-3770
The stage accommodates the full range of Williamsburg’s sonic underground, from the predictable (indie rock, hushed folk duos) to the throwback (rockabilly, ska) to the unexpected (vaudeville country-pop).
503 Columbus Ave., nr. 84th St.; 212-579-3100
For twelve years, Prohibition has been a nightly home for the Upper West Side’s best bar bands, with their requisite unfortunate monikers in tow: Rock Junky, Tangled Vine, Sponge Worthy. Good-time rock and roll.
375 Third Ave., at 27th St.; 212-683-6500
Touring and local country-rock roots acts play to a honky-tonk-channeling crowd gnawing on chips and salsa and standing on peanut hulls. Everything from Hawaiian steel-guitar swing and Michigan hillbilly howlin’ to Mexican-cowboy bluegrass can be heard here, for free.