London is one of, if not the most exciting city in the world, especially when you’re a uni student. There are so many things to do around the city, no matter what you’re interested in. I know I’m biased as someone who’s from here, but it is truly the greatest city in the world. If you like clubbing, there are club nights all over the city. If Indie music is your thing, or you simply want to try out a new kind of club night, this article has got you covered. Here are some of the best indie clubs in London.
1. The Lexington
Located in Pentonville in the heart of Islington, The Lexington is one of the most iconic bars in the city. It is an award-winning bar that also frequently hosts live music. The Indie night, also known as the White Heat Club night, starts at 11pm sharp every Friday. There is a wide variety of indie music on offer, from the classics like Fleetwood Mac and New Order to some of the newer indie stars like Wet Leg. It’s everything an Indie fan could want.
Address: 96-98 Pentonville Road, N1 9JB
2. The Old Blue Last
The tagline on The Old Blue Last’s website is “We’ve had so much fun, the roof caved in on us twice.” If that’s not a sign that this venue will provide a good time, then I don’t know what is. In the heart of Shoreditch, the venue holds 300 years of music history and it claims to be haunted by Shakespeare. The gigs will generally be about £10 a ticket, but some are completely free (you’re not a student if you don’t love free things). And, if you arrive before 6pm, you can take advantage of their early bird prices (£4 for everything). Again, what more could you want?
Address: 38 Great Eastern Street, EC2A 3ES
3. Retro Bar
Retro Bar is one of the best indie clubs in London, if not the best, for the LGBTQIA+ community. While the bar does not offer the indie club night you would expect, there are indie DJs every Friday night from 8-11pm. The bar also hosts a number of different additional activities, from drag bingo to music quizzes. One thing to note is that most nights, the venue shuts its doors at 11pm. But, it’s the perfect option if you want to have a fun night out but you’ve got things to do the next morning. You get the best of both worlds.
Address: 2 George Court, WC2N 6HH
4. Brixton Jamm
One for the South Londoners. If you don’t want to cross the river, Brixton Jamm provides a great alternative. A convenient 10-minute walk up Brixton Road from Brixton station, it is one of the last truly independent music venues in the city. It features the first in-house Martin Audio MLA Compact sound system in the UK, a giant LED visual display and one of the most vibrant and exciting atmospheres in the city.
Address: 261 Brixton Road, SW9 6LH
5. Moth Club
Housed in an old servicemen’s club in Hackney, the Moth Club boasts an eccentric glittery ceiling, combined with a rich history. It offers a unique blend of indie events from live music to club nights. From emerging artists to established acts, the Moth Club consistently offers an eclectic mix, becoming a staple for indie enthusiasts seeking an intimate, quirky venue.
Address: Old Trades Hall, Valette St, Hackney, London E9 6NU
6. Shacklewell Arms
Located in Dalston, the Shacklewell Arms offers the perfect harmony between a traditional British pub and an atmospheric indie venue. The back room, often bathed in neon lights, has become a haven for up-and-coming indie acts. With its beer garden and regular live music nights, the Shacklewell Arms remains at the forefront of London’s indie scene, championing new talent and diverse sounds.
Address: 71 Shacklewell Ln, Dalston, London E8 2EB
Strategically positioned next to Hackney Central station, Oslo offers a trifecta of dining, clubbing, and live indie music in a Nordic-inspired setting. The spot seamlessly blends culinary experiences with pulsating indie beats, becoming an essential stop for indie music fans looking for an evening of dining and dancing.
Address: 1A Amhurst Rd, Hackney, London E8 1LL
8. The Social
The Social is by far one of the best indie clubs in London, as it melds a relaxed bar setting with an electric indie atmosphere. With its iconic red neon sign and underground feel, it has been an integral part of London’s music scene since the late ’90s. Its consistent dedication to hosting eclectic indie nights and promoting grassroots talent makes it an indispensable gem in the city’s indie circuit.
Address: 5 Little Portland St, London W1W 7JD
9. Camden Assembly
Previously known as The Barfly, Camden Assembly, located in the musical heart of Camden, is steeped in indie rock heritage. With its intimate setting, it has been the launchpad for numerous indie rock artists over the decades. The venue continually refreshes its lineup, ensuring a perfect blend of established acts and emerging talent.
Address: 49 Chalk Farm Rd, London NW1 8AN
10. Sebright Arms
After a significant refurbishment, Sebright Arms emerged as an essential venue for indie lovers. Nestled in Bethnal Green, it’s a hive for up-and-coming talent. With its fusion of classic pub vibes and a dedicated gig space, it consistently showcases the best in indie and alternative music. Its commitment to nurturing emerging talent makes it a must-visit for indie aficionados.
Address: 31-35 Coate St, London E2 9AG
11. Bush Hall
With its ornate Edwardian décor, Bush Hall offers an elegant backdrop for indie concerts. Over the years, it has seen both renowned and rising indie acts grace its stage. It was originally a dance hall in the early 1900s, so combines a rich history and ornate ambience make it a distinctive venue in London’s music landscape.
Address: 310 Uxbridge Rd, Shepherd’s Bush, London W12 7LJ
12. Paper Dress Vintage
Offering a seamless mix of daytime vintage shopping and nighttime indie gigs, Paper Dress Vintage is a truly unique spot in Hackney for music and fashion lovers. It’s an embodiment of Hackney’s vibrant culture, marrying fashion and music seamlessly.
Address: 352A Mare St, London E8 1HR
Club nights are only one of the many things that form a great night out for students, with some of the best indie clubs in London being a great place to start. Check out this article with some of the best freshers’ events to do in London this year.
A student from University of Nottingham.