comScore

Best of

the Twin Cities

BEST ROCK CLUB

First Avenue

There's a huge gulf between the earthly bounds of the small-capacity bar/nightclub and the teeming edifice of the 18,000-seat sports arena—not just spatially, but in the type of bands that take the stage. Fortunately, it's a gap that First Avenue has been filling admirably for decades. The feat has been especially impressive in the last few years, when First Ave has had to weather a nasty booking market and competition from newer, bigger venues. Yet the club grinds proudly on. April alone has brought us alt-country star Neko Case, the recently emancipated from Audioslave Chris Cornell, Afrobeat funksters Antibalas, and the weekly hipster-friendly dance night Too Much Love. These events, like thousands of shows before, always hold the potential to be the best you ever saw, or at least one worth storing in the hard drive you keep in your head. It's a native right to complain about First Avenue's grotty looks, but the fact is that the atmosphere defines "rock club" for everyone who calls the Cities home. Close your eyes, and we bet you can picture the checkered dance floor, the faintly glowing skyline silhouette on the second floor, or the hundreds of band-logo stickers that cover the door to the DJ booth. The room never seems to change, but in fact it does: Recent improvements include food catering and flat-screen monitors for those clubgoers stuck near the back. Our memories should be safe as long as they don't paint the ceiling white.

Best Concert Venue (2014) First Avenue

Best Sound Team (2014) First Avenue

Best Concert Venue (2016) First Avenue

Best Concert Venue (2013) Cedar Cultural Center

Best Rock Club (2013) First Avenue

Best Concert of the Past 12 Months (Touring) (2012) tUnE-yArDs at First Avenue

Best Concert of the Past 12 Months (Local) (2012) Doomtree Blowout 7 at First Avenue and 7th St. Entry

Best Dance Club (2012) First Avenue

Best Dance Night (2012) Get Cryphy

Best Concert of the Past 12 Months (Touring) (2011) Ms. Lauryn Hill at First Avenue

BEST ACOUSTIC PERFORMER Piper's Crow

BEST ACTOR Ansa Akyea

BEST ACTRESS Tracey Maloney

BEST ALBUM OF THE PAST 12 MONTHS Chooglin'

BEST ALL-AGES VENUE The Garage

BEST AM RADIO PERSONALITY Tom Mischke

BEST ART CINEMA Oak Street Cinema

BEST ART GALLERY Creative Electric Studios

BEST BAND NAME Huge Rat Attacks

BEST BAND TO BREAK UP IN THE PAST 12 MONTHS The Soviettes

BEST BLUES BAND The Butanes

BEST BLUES BAR Famous Dave's

BEST BOOK BY A LOCAL AUTHOR 900 Miles from Nowere

BEST BUDGET MOVIE THEATER Roseville 4

BEST CHOREOGRAPHER Ananya Chatterjea

BEST CLASSICAL PERFORMANCE OF THE PAST 12 MONTHS Minnesota Orchestra performing Beethoven's Fifth Symphony

BEST CLUB DJ E-Tones

BEST CONCERT OF THE PAST 12 MONTHS (LOCAL) The Plastic Constellations and Tapes 'n Tapes at First Avenue

BEST CONCERT OF THE PAST 12 MONTHS (TOURING) Rakim

BEST CONCERT VENUE Varsity Theater

BEST DANCE CLUB Foundation

BEST DANCE PERFORMANCE OF THE PAST 12 MONTHS Anytown: Stories of America

BEST DANCER Karen Sherman

BEST DIRECTOR Wendy Knox

BEST FESTIVAL Grand Old Day

BEST FILM Sweet Land

BEST FM RADIO PERSONALITY Bill DeVille

BEST HIP-HOP ARTIST Brother Ali

BEST HIP-HOP RADIO PROGRAM Redefinition Radio

BEST INDEPENDENT THEATER Emigrant Theater

BEST JAZZ ARTIST Frank Morgan

BEST JAZZ CLUB Dakota Jazz Club and Restaurant

BEST KARAOKE James Ballentine VFW Post 246

BEST LITERARY JOURNAL Conduit

BEST LIVE ARTIST Dance Band

BEST LOCAL MUSIC COMPILATION Duluth Does Dylan Revisited

BEST LOCAL RECORD LABEL Afternoon Records

BEST MOVIE THEATER Riverview Theater

BEST MUSEUM Minneapolis Institute of Arts

BEST MUSEUM EXHIBIT Kara Walker: My Complement, My Enemy, My Oppressor, My Love

BEST MUSIC STORE (CHAIN) Guitar Center

BEST MUSIC STORE (INDEPENDENT) Twin Town Guitars

BEST NEW BAND Mouthful of Bees

BEST OLD BAND Dan Wilson

BEST OPEN MIC BALLS Cabaret

BEST OPERA The Grapes of Wrath

BEST PLACE TO BUY VINYL Hymie's Vintage Records

BEST PLACE TO RENT FOREIGN FILMS Cinema Revolution

BEST PLACE TO WATCH A MOVIE OUTDOORS Stevens Square Park

BEST PUBLIC ACCESS CABLE TV PROGRAM Black Focus

BEST PUBLIC ARTS PROJECT Art Shanty Projects

BEST R&B ARTIST J. Isaac

BEST RADIO PROGRAM AFTER MIDNIGHT Radio Riot

BEST RADIO STATION KFAI (90.3/106.7 FM)

BEST READING OF THE PAST 12 MONTHS Mark Mallman and Chuck Klosterman Kill Themselves to Live

BEST ROCK BAND Little Man

BEST SINGLE ARTIST SHOW Jaron Childs: Ruptures

BEST SONGWRITER Jeremy Messersmith

BEST SPORTS TALK RADIO HOST Paul Allen

BEST STAGE PRODUCTION Last of the Boys

BEST THEATER FOR COMEDY Brave New Workshop

BEST THEATER FOR DRAMA Children's Theatre Company

BEST TV STATION TPT:Channels 2 and 17

BEST VOCALIST (FEMALE) Prudence Johnson

BEST VOCALIST (MALE) Mike Gunther