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Top 5 Midlands Music Venues

Nottingham Rock City

A monolithic labyrinth of a rock venue, Rock City’s famous club nights are the stuff of legend, and arguably the best of their kind in the UK. However, Rock City more than holds its own as a live venue, too, and has even played host to legends such as Nirvana and Rage Against The Machine. The building houses two stages – one downstairs which holds about 200, perfect for bands on the ascendancy, and the much-larger upstairs venue in the main club room. Both have excellent sound, a great atmosphere, and a well-stocked, reasonably-priced bar. Quite simply, the perfect rock venue.

Scruffy Murphy’s

Not one for the faint of heart, but those with heavier tastes can do no wrong by visiting Scruffy Murphy’s, located right in the centre of Birmingham. An archetypal rock pub by day, Scruffy’s regularly devotes its evenings to hosting the best touring bands on the circuit; its gig history including the likes of Municipal Waste, Carcass, and Napalm Death, who can regularly be found drinking in the establishment. Scruffy Murphy’s is about a 40-minute drive away from our Easirent site in East Midlands Airport, but for those with a thirst for heavy music, it’s well worth the trip.

The Victoria Inn, Derby

Against all odds, this tiny little venue has become a permanent fixture on the ticklist of up-and-coming touring bands from across the UK. On the surface, it seems like just another rock pub venue, but you only have to see one if its many gigs in full swing to see that the hype is entirely justified. The management’s passion for music is infectious, and with Derby’s strong rock heritage, you’re guaranteed a decent crowd any night of the week. Its jam-packed for months to come, and features some of the UK’s most exciting musical prospects across all genres. A great place to catch the next-big-thing.

O2 Academy Birmingham

Okay, so it’s not exactly the most adventurous choice, but it’s a safe bet with a quality sound system, and there’s no doubting the musical pedigree that has passed through this venue. Formerly known as the Hummingbird, this 3-stage complex has hosted countless legends throughout the last few decades, and the future looks bright for the venue, too. Acts on the horizon for the remainder of 2015 include Frank Turner, Foxes, Yelawolf, Catfish & the Bottlemen, and ascerbic US comedian Doug Stanhope. The O2 also plays host to the ever-popular indie/alternative club night Propaganda, which makes use of all 3 rooms within the venue. Full listings are available here.

The Maze, Nottingham

The Maze is a compact, charming venue, and is perfect for those seeking out the best musical talent on the local scene. The venue is a must for emerging touring acts, with its accommodating staff, strong PA system and cheap bar providing the perfect atmosphere for a local gig. It’s not just rock, either – there are regular jazz and folk bookings, and the venue alsohosts a twice-monthly open mic night, where the standard is impressively high. Full listings are available on their website.

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