When it comes to music venues, there’s more to Liverpool than the Cavern Club. And while that famous Mathew Street basement hangout of the Beatles has a firm place in pop music’s history (albeit in its reconstructed form these days), it’s the city’s cafes, bars, concert halls, warehouses and even churches that are driving Liverpool’s music scene towards the future. Discover the hottest spots below.
Here are our picks
The Invisible Wind Factory, Carlton Street, Liverpool, Merseyside - Visit now
When the Kazimier on Wolstenholme Square closed its doors at the end of 2015, it was seen as a dark day for the city’s music (and experimental theatre) scene. But the team behind it have quickly followed up with the Invisible Wind Factory, a larger and arguably more ambitious venue near the Kingsway Tunnel, off the North Liverpool docks. The flexible former warehouse space hosts regular live music including Liverpool’s celebration of the freakscene, WRONG Festival, as well as headline shows by the likes of Car Seat Headrest, Asian Dub Foundation and Wooden Shjips.
Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, Hope Street , Liverpool, Merseyside, L1 9BP - Visit now
Liverpool’s popular concert hall is situated in a 1930s Grade II-listed building on Hope Street, to the east of the city centre. The art deco-style hall seats over 1700 people and hosts both its resident Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra as well as visiting ensembles and artists. The venue’s expansive contemporary programme, meanwhile, features familiar names such as The Waterboys, Echo & The Bunnymen and Jools Holland.
Jimmy’s Liverpool, 130 Bold Street, Liverpool, L1 4JA - Visit now
The sister venue to Jimmy’s in Manchester, George and Jimmy Craig have brought the best up and coming bands and music legends to the basement of Jimmy’s Liverpool on Bold Street. They’ve already hosted gigs by the Coral, My Life Story, Babybird, Red Rum Club, Space and Dreadzone, and a new partnership with club promoter EVOL looks set to bring some of the most in demand tours to Liverpool in 2021.
Camp and Furnace, 67 Greenland Street, Liverpool, Merseyside, L1 0BY - Visit now
Home to one of Liverpool’s truly international events, the annual Liverpool International Festival Of Psychedelia, Camp and Furnace would be the envy of most cities. The cavernous three-room complex in the Baltic Triangle is part bar-restaurant (boasting its own beer) and part flexible event space – meaning it can host a film shoot one day and the likes of Mogwai, Martha Wainwright, Optimo or John Cooper Clarke the next.
The Shipping Forecast, 15 Slater Street, Liverpool, Merseyside, L1 4BW - Visit now
The vaguely nautically themed Shipping Forecast is a great place to catch new bands on the up. Its basement club, “the hold”, is a sweaty rock ‘n’ roll mainstay for the city – offering gig-goers the chance to catch the likes of Russian shoegaze band Pinkshinyultrablast or South African duo Early Years for as little as £6.
District Liverpool, 61 Jordan Street, Liverpool, L1 0BE - Visit now
The creation of 70s punk legend Jayne Casey, District Liverpool is a vibrant multi-purpose venue in the Baltic Triangle that hosts gigs, club nights, film screenings, cabaret, festivals and much more. District is home to some of the city’s most popular and eclectic music nights, including Beers For Queers, Positive Vibration and EAT ME + Preach, and is a key venue at the likes of Liverpool Sound City, Liverpool International Festival of Psychedelia and Threshold Festival.
LEAF on Bold Street, 65-67 Bold Street, Liverpool, Merseyside, L1 4EZ - Visit now
Above Leaf’s popular ground floor café, its event space boasts mirror balls galore. Musically, expect to hear things at the more folk end of the spectrum – with Gomez singer Ben Ottewell, Californian singer-songwriter Phoebe Bridgers and Canadian country outfit The Deep Dark Woods among recent highlights. Leaf’s ground floor hosts regular acoustic and DJ nights too – many of which are free entry.