Friday, April 4, 2014

The Urban Lounge: an SLC treasure

I was at the Urban Lounge last night for
Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks, and don't think I've ever fully appreciated this venue before. At 241 S 500 E, Urban consistently brings in great national and local talent for a very reasonable price. Even being a well known act, the Jicks (great show by the way) were only $25.

The place is intimate and the crowds are generally laid back. One can easily saunter within 10 feet of the stage throughout the show. Their calendar is here and some surprisingly thoughtful Yelp reviews are here. Looks like the place is still run by Will Sartain (and the company he and Lance Saunders own, S&S Presents), whom you'll meet if you spend enough time at SLC shows.

One bonus feature: fine art. The drummer mentioned that they were trying extra hard to stay on their game because of this:

And Stephen Malkmus (still worthwhile, silly, and full of non sequiturs): 

Other notable acts that've come through in the last few years include Built to Spill (who perhaps have moved down from the Depot for good), the Silver Jews, Jeremy Enigk (of Sunny Day Real Estate fame), Nada Surf, Mates of State, and Neon Indian. The Jicks have been making the trek out every other year lately. It makes one swear off USANAESA, and the Maverick Center for good.

Note: one of our favorites, Kishi Bashi, will be at Urban on May 23rd. His NPR Tiny Desk Concert is here. In the last two years he's played at the State Room and Kilby Court.


  1. Long time listener first time caller. The Urban Lounge sounds like balls. Yes they consistently get solid bands. Yes everybody is pretty chill. But the Depot guys. Just as chill. Sounds like money. Use your ever growing public appeal to get better band at the Depot.

  2. Ha, so I take it G Love and Neutral Milk Hotel don't do it for you? Kind of with I had seen Neutral Milk, but other than that the Depot hasn't been much of a draw (for me at least) in years. Saw Built to Spill there twice in maybe 2010-11 and that was the last.

  3. St Vincent sounded great last week. You planning on Ray at Red Butte? What else should I have in my sights?

  4. Haven't gotten into Ray as much as most people. Will have to listen to more of his stuff.

    These look like ones we'll go to (you guys should come up):