These Music Venues are Not for your Mom

An old man's guide to some of Toronto's better underground/newer music venues

If you’re like me, every few months you feel like you’re losing touch with what the kids are into and you panic that you’re becoming your Dad in terms of musical relevancy. Most of us have been to the bigger venues in the city like the Horseshoe, Opera House or Lee’s Palace, but where are the younger music fans checking out shows in the city? Here is an old man’s guide to some of Toronto’s better underground/newer music venues.

Double Double Land

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This hidden Kensington Market venue is a great place to catch up and coming bands, if you can find it! It’s a hole in the wall that specializes in punk and electronic and also hosts art events and dinner parties. You might look like a narc here, but suck it up and check it out some night.


This place is no great secret but I’ve seen some great shows here and it often gets overlooked in concert listings. There are a few different spaces in the building, from the intimate front room/piano bar to the larger back room; this venue hosts a wide variety of interesting music.

Parts and Labour

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Mostly known for it’s delicious food, Parts and Labour also has a music venue on the lower floor. It’s a good, sweaty room that mostly hosts punk, hardcore, hip-hop and DJ events. Go try their amazing burger and work it on the lower floor.

The Jam Factory

A relatively new venue, Jam Factory used to actually be a Jam Factory (like the preserve for toast). Now it’s a super cool space that doubles as a shared office space during the day. By night it’s an airy, open concept venue that boasts cheap beer and live music. It almost has the feel of a loft party…one that overlooks the DVP.