Philadelphia is teeming with both small performance venues (think The Electric Factory, The Fillmore, and The Barbary) and indie gallery spaces, such as the James Oliver Gallery, Vox Populi, and the ICA. Street sought out a space that was the best of both, located deep under Callowhill Street.
Underground Arts is a two–room venue known for hosting indie bands, art festivals, comedy nights, theatre, and poetry. Its most prominent programming is its live musical performances, which take place in either the larger lounge space flanked by murals or the separate bar room with a more intimate stage and small dance floor area complete with a disco ball. Most events are 21+, but some, like the Warpaint concert Street attended, block off the smaller venue space as the designated bar area and open up the event to those 18+. Other events, such as the upcoming Pancakes and Booze Art Show, fill both of these rooms with art vendors and create two distinct gallery spaces.
Ticketing was an easy process that could be accomplished either online or in a small box office tucked among Underground Art’s heavily muraled lower lobby. For those of us lucky enough to be “of age," the bar area has an extensive selection of craft beers, ranging from Philly faves like Yards Love Stout to smaller indie brands like Walt Whit Witbier. Moving out of the bar, Street encountered the opening act of the night, The Dove & The Wolf, a local indie band that frequently opens and acts at the venue. As soon as their small set was over, cheers arose from the crowd as Warpaint played a toned down, lounge version of their hit, “Undertow." Much of the band’s set was played in this more jazzy manner.
Warpaint is not the only show playing at Underground Arts that may appeal to Penn students. Street has rounded up a few more opportunities for students to go there:
Tuesday, September 26th, Alice Glass Solo Show
Out with new material after leaving Crystal Castles, this show promises to make both old and new fans happy. Tickets can be purchased for $18.00 and are 21+.
Saturday, September 30th, Dance Yourself Clean—Indie Techno Night
Music inspired by the likes of LCD Soundsystem, Neon Indian, Purity Ring, and Swedish favorite, The Knife. Rivaling the likes of the infamous Digital Love of Dolphin/Barbary fame, this show is sure to give event–goers their much needed dose of techno. Tickets are $12.00 and 21+.
Thursday, October 12th, Girlpool with The Dove & The Wolf and Queen of Jeans
Featuring the same opening act as the concert Street attended, this show focuses on Philly native Girlpool's growing catalog of material. Tickets are $10.00 and 18+, so this is a must–see for any Penn student.