Best live venue for hard rock/metal

Melody Inn

3826 N. Illinois St., 317-923-4707,

The Melody Inn is one of those places where someone can walk in a corporate yuppie and walk out feeling like a punk rocker. The staff is friendly, the Old Styles are ice cold and everyone who steps on stage gets attention from the audience; it’s not like you could ignore the band if you wanted.

1. Whiskeytits

With a song called “Goddamn Pirate,” how can you not like Whiskeytits? I mean, if you don’t like fast, nasty rock ’n’ roll, I suppose you could conceivably not like it. Its show schedule is hit and miss, so catch ’em when you can.

2. Llange

Llange made this list after an impressive show with Giant Squid at Radio Radio in March. For a band to play predominantly slow, mostly instrumental songs that aren’t boring, it’s worthy of repeated listening.

3. About the Fire

Vocalist Fat Sammy’s throat sounds like he eats hot coals and gargles with brake fluid. Anyone can scream, but this dude has nailed the yell. ATF shows are fun, fist-in-the-air crowd sing-alongs.

4. Emerson Rose

Emerson Rose, who won 2006’s Battle of Birdy’s, has taken the 12-year span of 1976 to 1988 and captured it in a bottle. It’s borderline cock-rock, but there are no songs about motorcycles and switchblade knives.

5. The Dream is Dead

TDiD, or T-Diddy, reminds me of Burn it Down during its two-minute song phase. Highly political and low on bullshit, TDiD’s 2005 release, Hail the New Pawn, is one of the heaviest, best-produced metal records to come out of Indy.