Boston Walking Distances

I’ve been making several jaunts around the city for the past 30 days since I got here. Generally speaking, you can easily cover a lot of distance around town if you know where you are going.

If you are walking from Northeastern towards Fenway Park, you must realize that there is a pretty decent sized green area called Fenway that could fuck you up along the way. Basically the big thing on one side of it is the Museum of Fine Arts and the big thing on the other side is Fenway Park. If you are near the Museum, keep walking until you get to the outer edge of park, make a turn, and keep walking straight ahead until you get to what is called Landmark Center (a big ass art deco building). Along the way you should pass Simmons College and Emmanuel College. Once you get to Landmark, keep heading straight down Brookline Avenue and you’ll end up very close to Fenway Park. You’ll have to take a right down Landsdowne or Yawkey…the choice is yours. The walk is about 20-25 minutes which is really nothing in the grand scheme of things.

If you are walking from Northeastern to Boston Common, you shouldn’t run into any problems. It’s about a 25-35 minute walk down Huntington, Columbus, or Tremont. If you walk down Huntington, you are going to have to change direction a little bit and travel up Boylston because Huntington stops near the Convention Center. I think Columbus is faster and more convenient than Tremont, but Tremont is a pretty fun walk because it’s a bit less “urban” in the sense that there are more antiquated small housing residences. Once you get to the Common you can keep walking straight past the Financial District and Faneuil Hall until you get to the North End.

There’s really not much going on Northwest of the Common. There’s hospitals and old little housing units. If you head past Northeastern to the West, you’ll end up in Allston, Brookline, Newton, or some other place like that. If you keep walking past Boston University that is.

This may be of no interest to you, but if it is then cool!

KLYAM Boston Venue Guide

These aren’t known levels or anything; a mix of opinion and fact, if that’s all right with you.

Level One
– Lizard Lounge (Local bands; usually unsigned; capacity 80)
– O’Brien’s Pub (Local bands; usually unsigned; capacity 70)
– Several other small venues without any prerequisite venues.

Level Two
– P.A’s Lounge (Typically signed w/ a good size following; capacity 150; example: Jens Lekman)
– Club Passim (Mid-size acts of the folk persuasion w/ good size following; capacity 125)

Level Three
– Middle East Upstairs (Prerequisite of Level One/Two shows; mid-size bands typically signed; capacity 194; example: Rural Alberta Advantage)
– T.T the Bear’s (Prerequisite of at least 3 Level One/Two shows; mid-size bands typically signed; capacity 300; example: Sam Roberts)
– Great Scott (Headlines fairly popular signed local/national/international bands, often from Northern Europe; capacity 240; example: Handsome Furs)

Level Four
– Harper’s Ferry (Headlines low-demand mainstream/high-demand independent bands; capacity 400; examples: Wale, Flobots, Jay Reatard)
– Middle East Downstairs (Headlines highly visible independent/slightly mainstream bands with strong followings; capacity 575; examples: Black Lips, Walkmen, Dinosaur Jr.)

Level Five
РParadise Rock Club (Headlines established/new national touring acts  that easily sell out Level Four venues; capacity 728; examples: King Khan & the Shrines, Anti-Flag)
– Wilbur Theatre (Headlines national touring acts that have established quite an audience; capacity 1223; example: Sonic Youth)
– House of Blues (Headlines national touring acts, which may or may not be considerably mainstream, that have established quite an audience; capacity 2425; examples: New Kids on the Block, Animal Collective)
– Orpheum Theatre (Headlines national touring acts, which may or may not be considerably mainstream, that have established quite an audience; capacity 2763; examples: Regina Spektor, Yeah Yeah Yeahs)

Level Six
– Wang Theatre (Headlines highly visible bands and artists who have, usually over a number of years, developed a vast following; capacity 3700; examples: Pixies, Lady Gaga)
– Bank of America Pavilion (Headlines highly visible bands and artists who have developed a vast following; capacity 5000; examples: Flaming Lips, Elvis Costello)
– Agganis Arena (Headlines very big names in rock and pop; capacity 7200; examples: Weezer, Kings of Leon)

Level Seven
– Comcast Center (Headlines the biggest names in rock and pop; capacity 19900; examples: Radiohead, Nickelback)
– TD Garden (Headlines the biggest names in rock and pop; capacity 19580; examples: U2, Bruce Springsteen)

Some bands, undeniably, have a greater potential to rise to the top than others. For instance, Kings of Leon have worked their way up rather significantly in the past few years. Just two years ago they played the Paradise. This past April, they played the 10X larger Agganis Arena. Take Radiohead. They played the ‘Dise back in 1995 and just a few years later performed at the 20,000+ Suffolk Downs race track. Even King Khan & BBQ Show have been an upwardly mobile success story. They went from TT The Bears in 2005 to Great Scott in 2007 to the Paradise in 2008. For other bands like Black Lips, it’s been a somewhat slower ride. A touring band since 2000, they hit up TT’s in 2007 before selling out Middle East Downstairs the past two years, thanks in some part to critically acclaimed album releases Good Bad Not Evil and 200 Million Thousand. I’m not going to put money on it, but I wouldn’t be totally surprised if they move up the ladder to the Paradise (provided dates are available) for their next U.S tour.

Sonic Youth Wilbur Set-List

The review is coming up soon, but for now here is their set list from last night at the Wilbur Theatre:

1. “No Way”
2. “Sacred Trickster”
3. “Calming the Snake”
4. “Stereo Sanctity”
5. “Walkin’ Blue”
6. “Anti-Orgasm”
7. “Leaky Lifeboat (For Gregory Corso)”
8. “Shadow of A Doubt”
9. “Antenna”
10. “Malibu Gas Station”
11. “Poison Arrow”
12. “Tom Violence”
13. “Massage the History”
——-Encore Break——–
14. “The Sprawl”
15. “Cross the Breeze”
—–2nd Encore Break—-
16. “What We Know”
17. “Death Valley 69”

Boston’s Best Concert Venues

Middle East Downstairs – A+ – Capacity: 575
My favorite concert venue! It might be that all the bands I’ve seen here have been amazing, but it’s the intimate nature of the basement (and the hot hipster chicks) that makes me always leave Nabil’s premise drenched in sweat smiling.

Paradise Rock ClubA – Capacity: 650
A truly awesome place to see a concert.  There is enough room for rocking out in front of the stage (besides one annoying pole), enough room to just sit or stand around and watch, and enough room on the stage to fit a seven person band.

Continue reading “Boston’s Best Concert Venues”