When I started the thread I guessed that Glasgow and Leeds would feature highly.
I’ve lived in both - Glasgow in the early-mid '90’s when I went to university. And I left Leeds a few years ago after living there for 7 or 8 years.
I’d say Glasgow in the mid-'90’s was OK, the Barras was outstanding obviously but the undercard was a bit lacking. Most things passing through King Tuts, and beyond that there wasn’t a lot (Cathouse and Nice and Sleazy from memory), but looking at current listings it looks to be much much better.
I really enjoyed Leeds and would also sing the praises of the Brudenell. I think the best thing is the booking policy, not sure there’s any venue in the UK with gets as many up and coming bands of a certain size passing through it and in the time I lived in Leeds it went from strength to strength. If I was being churlish I would say that the Leeds music was a bit too focussed on there - in the time I was there the Cockpit and Common Place closed which pushed more music out to Headingley. Shortly before I left the Belgrave Music Hall opened, but I really didn’t like there. I also missed the end of lots of gigs at the Brudenell in the rush to get the last train home from the station (I also missed the occasional train).
Completely agree about Sheff and Edinburgh punching well below their weight in terms of gigs. I’ve also spent a bit of time in Oxford and Cambridge and they also seem to be lacking, particularly for places with big young populations. And I guess Bradford suffers from being so close to Leeds but for somewhere with a similar population it’s dead.
Anyone got any thoughts about the best place in the world to be a gig goer? I lived in Melbourne after Glasgow and that seemed to be thriving, no idea how it is nowadays. I’ve also enjoyed Berlin when I’ve been there.