Best hip-hop club
Avalon has long been legendary for its techno and for the big-name bands who play there when they swing through town. It's rock and electronica, it's Steve Earle and Paul Oakenfold. But Avalon has a new spin on Thursday nights. Hot & Heavy Thursdays has become the rip-rapping nexus of the hip-hop scene in Boston, and is a new winner in our readers' poll. This party has played host to DJs such as Green Lantern, Funkmaster Flex, MTV's DJ Clue, and Def Jam's Joe Budden. And resident DJs Caprice, Clinton Sparks, Big, and Al Gee drop the latest rap and hip-hop classics. A sexy flier for the night features a cross between J.Lo and Penelope Cruz wearing only a necklace. Phoenix readers agree: Thursday night is hot.
Still the premier place to hear indie rock, the Middle East also has garnered a reputation for serving up the cream of the indie hip-hop crop. Voted best hip-hop club by our readers for the third year running, the Middle East has played host to Mr. Lif, 7L & Esoteric, Los Nativos, Jedi Mind Tricks, Killah Priest, Outerspace, Irepress, Masta Killah, and Jake the Snake, to name a few. The Middle East has no rival when it comes to underground hip-hop.
Avalon, 15 Lansdowne Street, Boston, (617) 262-2424, www.avalonboston.com; Middle East, 472 Mass Ave, Cambridge, (617) 864-EAST, www.mideastclub.com.