Best of

the Twin Cities

Best Concert Venue

Palace Theatre

The $15.6 million renovation of St. Paul’s long-dormant, 101-year-old Palace Theatre fills a crucial need in the Twin Cities music scene. The 2,800-capacity Palace provides a stylish general admission venue that fits in comfortably between the venerable State and Orpheum theaters in Minneapolis, and the outdated gymnasium that is the nearby Roy Wilkins Auditorium. Operated by First Avenue, the Palace burst out of the gates with a stellar string of top-quality bookings. Opening weekend in March saw a trio of high profile, sold-out shows from Atmosphere, Phantogram, and the Jayhawks. Regina Spektor and a two-night run from the String Cheese Incident kept the early musical momentum going. A diverse run of upcoming gigs includes names like Tycho, the xx, Slowdive, At the Drive In, Jason Isbell, Ryan Adams, Bryan Ferry, and the Pixies. The Palace’s sightlines, sound, and spaces are all impeccable, managing to make even larger shows feel intimate. So far, it looks like one of the best — and most essential — live music venue additions to the Twin Cities in years.

Readers’ Choice: First Avenue/7th St. Entry

Best Acoustic Performer Sam Cassidy

Best Album 'Wordless Wonder' by Real Numbers

Best Album Cover 'Bend Your Bones' by Fraea

Best Band Name Lazy Scorsese

Best Band to Break Up Frankie Teardrop

Best Club DJ DJ Keezy

Best Concert (Local) Communist Daughter record-release show at First Avenue (Nov. 11, 2016)

Best Concert (Touring) Kanye West at Xcel Energy Center (Oct. 10, 2016)

Best Cover Song 'Congratulations' by Dessa

Best Earworm 'Phone' by Lizzo

Best EP 'Nite Time' by Ness Nite

Best Hip-Hop Artist P.O.S

Best Hip-Hop Producer Travis Gorman

Best Hip-Hop Verse Finding Novyon on 'Cups' by Sean Anonymous & DJ Name

Best Jazz Artist Zacc Harris

Best Jazz Club Dakota Jazz Club

Best Jukebox Turf Club Clown Lounge

Best Karaoke The Infernal Singalong Machine at Grumpy's

Best Live Artist Lizzo

Best Metal Band Sunless

Best Compilation 'Sound Verite Records/IX Vol. 1 2016'

Best Music Controversy Pro-consent reimaging of 'Baby, It's Cold Outside' goes viral

Best Music Festival Eaux Claires

Best Music Residency Andrew Broder & People: A Residency for Music and Action at the Turf Club

Best Music TV Show 'The Lowertown Line'

Best Music Video "It's Good to Be Alive" by Mark Mallman

Best Music Video Director Mercies May

Best Musical Act of Protest Kitten Forever donate music sales to fight Trump

Best New Band Poolboy

Best Place to See a Show with Kids The Garage

Best R&B Artist Ness Nite

Best Record Label Doomtree Records

Best Record Store Day Location Flashlight Vinyl

Best Reunion Happy Apple

Best Rock Band Hippo Campus

Best Selling Out Hamburger Helper's 'Watch the Stove' mixtape

Best Single 'Kismet Kill' by Haley

Best Song to Cry To 'Someday We’ll Linger in the Sun' by Gaelynn Lea

Best Song to Have Sex To 'Full Court Press' by Tickle Torture & Velvet Negroni

Best Songwriter The Cactus Blossoms

Best Stage Style Finding Novyon

Best Venue to Close Mill City Nights

Best Venue to Open The Warming House

Best Vocalist Lady Midnight