The Reader's Choice: Logan Square Auditorium
Just to be clear, "best" in this case doesn't refer in any way to the sound quality in this echo chamber of a ballroom. It's the bane of the city's live sound engineers, whose valiant efforts are almost always defeated by its cavernous expanse. But if you've ever been a small- town punk, the same things that make the Logan Square Auditorium feel like a VFW hall retrofitted for live music—the dated utilitarian decor, the temporary-looking stage, the preponderance of all-ages shows—also make it feel like home. The fact that, unlike your typical VFW hall, it hosts not just daylong showcases of bad suburban metalcore but touring acts that are pure music-snob catnip—Congolese street musicians Konono no. 1, Dutch avant-punks the Ex with Ethiopian saxophonist Getatchew Mekuria—just makes it more lovable. 2539 N. Kedzie, 773-252-6179, lsachicago.com. —Miles Raymer
& Our readers' choice: Metro
3730 N. Clark, 773-549-0203, metrochicago.com.