October 12, 2017

The best places to see live music in London

Last week I got to see Portugal the Man in Heaven which was a bit of a change from the usual London concert venue.

After living in the capital for five years on and off, i’ve been to quite a few music venues, some giant ones such as Wembley Stadium and some small ones like the old Camden Barfly.

And it got me thinking, out of all of the concert venues i’ve been to, what are my favourites?

So here I am putting together a list of my favourite gig venues.

The Albert Hall

Thought i’d start off with possibly my favourite concert venue in the world. I remember seeing The Killers there for their Radio 1 show and just being in awe at my surroundings.

We’d got last minute tickets behind the stage which meant I was seeing exactly what the band were seeing and it was incredible.

Albert Hall London

There are lots of different genres of music that can be seen at the Albert Hall. I’ve seen indie bands to classical music there – and I would really love to see some comedy there at some point.

You can either buy tickets online or another good shout is seeing what tickets are left at the box office – then you can see exactly where your seat will be.

Read more: The ultimate London bucket list

Brixton Academy

I know this is a bit of a weird one because I know of so many people who literally despise the Academy but I really appreciate its floor which has a slope to it meaning you can stand anywhere and get a good view. Plus the sound there is always amazing.

Loads of good bands are playing Brixton in the next coming months so it would be a good idea to see what’s coming up on the venue’s website.


I really love the intimate feel of Koko despite the fact that the balconies stretch over three floors. If you’re looking for a London concert venue that has a complete range of music then Koko is your go to.

Koko concert venue London

(Credit: DIY Mag)

I’ve heard of Jessie J playing there to indie bands such as the Temper Trap. One thing I would say though it get there early as it fills up on the ground level and you might end up stuck next to the bar. What a shame that would be!

Also if you’re looking for tickets at the last minute, then gigs at Koko are always a good shout.

Read more: An ode to The Killers

Bush Hall

Most people have heard of Shepherds Bush Empire, but they’re not likely to have heard of Bush Hall just a few minutes walk up the road.

Much smaller than Shepherds Bush Empire, Bush Hall is quite frankly the hidden gem of the music venue world and has a nice set of chandeliers to go with it.

Union Chapel

I almost forgot about this one. It’s an actual church that hosts live music concerts. Yep. When you get to the venue, all you have to do is take a pew and wait for the band to come on.

Concerts at Union Chapel are usually acoustic gigs with big bands such as Coldplay and The Killers having played. At the beginning of the year there are usually quite a few benefit concerts that big artists (even U2) play!

How do I book tickets?

Booking tickets depending on the act can either be easy or difficult. Like I said about the Albert Hall, you can either book online or head to their box office to pick out the seat you want.

The main sites I use to find concerts are Dice and See Tickets. Dice is handy if you’re visiting London and just looking to take in a random concert that evening while See Tickets is if you know what you want to see and just want to get the tickets.

Is there anything i’ve missed? What’s your favourite concert venue? 

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2 responses to “The best places to see live music in London”

  1. What great places! I’ll have to give them a go next time I’m in the city 🙂

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