Best Underground Club - 2007
Various basements on Cherokee Street
The best underground shows exist in the grit and grime of the city, advertised only to close-knit supporters of alternatively attuned music via word of mouth, Web or haphazardly distributed flyers. But down in the dusty basements on Cherokee Street, this is no stingy contingent. A community of free thinkers and open-minded individuals exists in these areas, rife with sincere performers seeking to broaden people's musical perspectives on a basis that is sometimes sporadic at best. That said, what could be more underground than actually being underground? Melissa Debus, booker of shows at one such below-surface venue, says, "I kind of want to be the catalyst for showing people that there's a different side of life than probably what they're used to." If Debus is referring to the south side of life, then it seems as though she's advocating for the right kind of fight one without a judgmentally based divide, in which people from all backgrounds coincide. Adds Debus: "It doesn't hurt to check out bands that you've never heard of and it doesn't hurt to take the risk. Try something new."