Best of NU: Best live music venue

Fenway’s House of Blues (HOB) opened just two months ago, but it’s already won the hearts of Northeastern students, showcasing famous acts like Thievery Corporation, Katy Perry, Ladytron and local favorites, Dropkick Murphys.
About a year ago, the HOB chain took over property formerly occupied by clubs Avalon and Axis at 15 Lansdowne St. The move was actually a return to its roots, since the first House of Blues was founded in Cambridge in 1992. It closed 10 years later, before HOB transformed into a well-known, nationwide chain of concert venues with a reputation for attracting the world’s most famous musical acts.
The venue is large and spacious, with colorful and creative interior decoration like intricate artwork. The club boasts a capacity of nearly 2,500, and three levels from which to view the stage. Concert attendees can also choose to sit at tables or stand.
Before the city’s newest HOB opened its doors, students were skeptical about the chain replacing smaller concert venues Avalon and Axis because they were unsure if management would give local, independent bands a fair chance to take the stage. ‘ ‘ ‘
David Rihoy, a freshman graphic design major who works with local bands, told The News last year he was concerned in particular about whether HOB ownership would raise ticket prices.
‘I hope they don’t start bringing in bigger acts just for the money,’ Rihoy said in a Jan. 8, 2008. ‘Boston is one of the biggest places for independent music. If they don’t have anywhere to play, they won’t be able to do anything.’
Although Lou Eney, a junior environmental sciences major, shared that fear, he said he’s still looking forward to an upcoming performance by Ratatat April 20.
Eney saw Ozomatli play at HOB on March 18 and said the show ran well and he liked that the new club salvaged some of the original layout of Axis.
Other upcoming events at the HOB include British pop singer Lily Allen April 19 and rapper Atmosphere May 13.
Eney said he also appreciates the box office’s more convenient hours.
‘I can just go there and buy the ticket and not have to pay the fees on Ticketmaster,’ he said.

‘- Anna Marden, News Correspondent

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