Who's where during the NXNE showcase showdown
B-SiDE (129 Peter, 416-204-9660)
A mix of electronic music, pop rock and singer/songwriters here, with sets by Red Suede Red, PH10 and a showcase by artists on the Fading Ways roster including Galore and Neil Leyton.
BLACK BULL (298 Queen West, 416-593-2766)
Roots rock and alt-county take over. Jay Clark and the Jones, Vaughn Passmore and Hank Engel & the Hoosier Daddies strum on, and there’s a cool people-watching patio, too.
BOVINE SEX CLUB (542 Queen West, 416-504-4239)
Earplugs are recommended at this loud rock club. Crack City Rockers, the Band from Planet X, the Helens and fabulously named Millions of Cats that Turned on Their Masters host.
C’EST WHAT (19 Church, 416-867-9499)
This east-side brew pub’s singer/songwriter night includes sets by Winnipeg’s fab mod pop crew Telepathic Butterflies, Ellen Reid and balladeer Alun Piggins & the Quitters.
CAMERON HOUSE (408 Queen West, 416-703-0811)
While DJs spin in the front lounge, the Cameron’s intimate back room features singer/songwriter Chris Staig, all-female dancehall reggae crew Women Ah Run Tings and pop rock combo Stella Luna.
CLINTON’S (693 Bloor West, 416-535-9541)
Blue Rodeo drummer Glenn Milchem’s pop crew the Swallows, dub reggae outfit Resinators and power poppers Outrageous Cherry highlight solid and surprisingly diverse nights on Bloor West. If the music sucks, go upstairs and make your own in a karaoke booth.
COMFORT ZONE (480 Spadina, 416-975-0909)
The jam band basement club goes urban again, with sets by Mood Ruff, reggae crews Sonia Collymore and the Souljah Prophets, Montreal hiphop favourites Butta Babees and New Yorkers Mike Control.
FREE TIMES CAFE (320 College, 416-967-1078)
There are no bands here, just singer/songwriters like Cicero, Megan Slankard, Martin Posen and Mark Islam.
HEALEY’S (178 Bathurst, 416-703-5882)
Jeff Healey’s underground blues bar welcomes jazz, bluegrass and even some hard-nosed rock, with locals Grand Total, the Bobby Cameron Band and Japan’s Baraka all plugging in. Play nicely and Healey himself might join the fun.
HOLY JOE’S (651 Bathurst, 416-504-0744)
This tiny room’s singer/songwriter folk night includes sets by Two Thirds Water, Taylored and Boyce’s Road.
HORSESHOE (370 Queen West, 416-598-4753)
Showcases by Six Shooter Records, MapleMusic and the CBC ensure long lineups here. Highlights include Tift Merritt, Jim Bryson, Ghetto Concept, the Deadly Snakes and explosive New York rockers Mooney Suzuki.
KATHEDRAL (651 Bathurst, 416-504-0744)
Those who love it loud will like it here. Flamboyant, occasionally naked rockers Merkury Burn, Guilt Trip, Shaftdrive and Loco bring the noise.
LEE’S PALACE (529 Bloor West, 416-532-1598)
Chart Magazine hosts its annual NXNE throwdown, featuring Toronto-via-Ottawa popsters Starling and a rare showing by Montreal’s punishing Bionic. Arrive early or stand in line.
LOUNGE 88 (14 Clinton)
This new chilled-out lounge offers a strong and diverse lineup of singer/songwriters, including Jack Breakfast, Gentleman Reg and Matt Murphy.
OASIS (294 College, 416-975-0845)
Tapas and folk music here, including Reid Jamieson, Stu Harcourt, Evalyn Parry and Andrea England.
OPM DEN (418 Dundas West, 416-582-5481)
This club cranks up the volume with a hard rock night. Tonedealer, Cheap Suits, Starving Friday and the ominously named Three Inches of Blood rock out.
RANCHO RELAXO (300 College, 416-920-0366)
Swearing at Motorists, Ohio pop crew 84 Nash, Vancouver’s Riff Randells and former James guitarist Kulas highlight this club’s three nights of roots rock and pop.
REVERB (651 Queen West, 416-504-0744)Celtic crew Slainte Mhath, the often-outrageous White Cowbell Oklahoma and the even more incendiary Robin Black & the Intergalactic Rock Stars mix it up Thursday and Friday.
RIVOLI (332 Queen West, 416-596-1908)
Edge 102 hosts a night of modern rock featuring the Snitches and Memory Bank, followed by sets by rising star Graph Nobel and punks Billy Talent. Saturday is MapleMusic night, including Bodega, Sam Roberts and Blurtonia.
SILVER DOLLAR (486 Spadina, 416-975-0909)
Massive twang ensemble Silver Hearts stuff themselves onto the stage here, joined by blues crews Mojo Grande and Falkin Blues.
TEQUILA LOUNGE (794 Bathurst, 416-968-2001)
NOW magazine hosts the festival’s only night of hiphop, including head-nodding sets by DJ Serious, Abs & Fase, former Len DJ Mackenzie and D-Sisive.
360 (326 Queen West, 416-593-0840)
The newly redesigned 360 reopens with the rock of Luke Duke, National Anthem and Toronto’s Plastic Bag.
TRANZAC CLUB (292 Brunswick, 416-923-8137)
This folk club hosts a showcase by the Paquin Entertainment Group as well as sets by Kathryn Rose, Jughead and the Verbal Teabags.
VICTORY CAFE (581 Markham, 416-516-5787)
It’s hard to pin down one dominating style of music at this quiet cafe. A Northern Chorus bring the space rock, Bob Egan and Stratochief add roots rock and Blackeyes fall somewhere in the middle.