Best Glasgow Venues for Indie Lovers

Indie kids often get a bad rep, painted in the media as pretentious music snobs in skinny jeans and thick-rimmed glasses (see also: hipster) and often preoccupied with obscure bands that make Sonic Youth look conservative. But indie music and an indie way of life dates back to the late 70s, when Stiff Records released its first single, independent of any major labels. Independent labels explored and opposed the status quo, carving a life for their indie kid disciples that they felt reflected their fight against traditional values and ways of creating music.

From Blur and The Libertines to Modest Mouse and indie enigmas Arctic Monkeys, indie music has remained a constant in student life and a soundtrack to our days of drinking cider in the park. To commemorate these good times, we’ve plucked out the best Glasgow venues for indie lovers – enjoy!




Its personal motto ‘Real Music: Hard Liquor’ could not ring truer. Known for its sleek, candle-lit interior where members of The Clash adorn the walls like indie guardian angels, Firewater asserts itself in the big city as the king of indie haunts. With an emphasis and passion for real music, from The Stone Roses to The Courteeners to Kings Of Leon, the killer vibes of this joint make for a great night out (complete with a boogie on their humble dance floor) or a casual couple of post tutorial cocktails. Tuesday’s to Thursday’s they are renowned for their 89p vodka mixes or maybe gin tickles your fancy for the same price…not to mention 99p spiced rum mixes. Sunday’s and Mondays sees £5.50 ‘Create Your Own Pitchers’! Its location on Sauchiehall Street makes it a perfect venue for indie music and cocktail lovers alike.


Nice N’ Sleazy

nice n sleazy

Glasgow’s notorious Nice n’ Sleazy has set the tone for unique live acts in a rough and ready environment, and you can even often spot bands there glugging a pint after their 02 ABC gig (I once met Newton Faulkner there on an impromptu Wednesday night). With comfy leather booths, great music and delicious Indian street food courtesy of Babu Bombay Street Kitchen, this place is perfect for a laid back hang or a hefty head bang complete with a mean white Russian.


The Flying Duck

flying duck

This hazy underground haven is home to some of the best of the city’s indie and electro DJs, while also playing old school rock and pop from old dusty records. If you’re looking for an eclectic mix of indie and alt rock with a healthy dose of the occasional folk session, The Flying Duck is not to be missed. Perks include their weekly life drawing classes from All The Young Nudes.


King Tut’s Wah Wah Hut

king tuts

Established in 1990, King Tut’s is famous in Glasgow for its cult shows and live indie, rock and alternative music. With The Verve, Radiohead and Oasis having all played within the same week during 1993, King Tut’s has carved reputation for itself as the place to be for indie lovers and lovers of eccentric tunes. Previous live acts include Fiona Apple, Biffy Clyro, Coldplay, Beck, Blur, Crowded House, White Stripes, The Strokes, Franz Ferdinand, Skunk Anansie, Paramore and Travis.


02 ABC


If you’re new to Glasgow or getting to grips with navigating the terrain of Sauchiehall Street’s pubs and clubs, or you’re simply looking for a decent bevvy and even better tunes, then O2 ABC’s Friday night Propaganda is likely to please. You better get there early as the queue often winds round the building, this popular club night plays the best of indie music from The Strokes and Radiohead to early American grunge gurus Nirvana. Its ample dancefloor means for a majestic night of cutting some mean shapes and reveling in indie glory.

Do you have a fave venue for indie music? Give us a shout and let us know over on Twitter.

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