149 7th Street, Gowanus

Big, booming, baroque Bell House brings a bit of the metropolitan thing to typically-industrial Gowanus. With a huge performance space in the main room and a darkly-lit Front(ier) Room filled with a nice variety of macro and micro brews as well as the occasional sexy cocktail, this newer addition to Brooklyn’s growing music venue menu promises to stick around so we can all linger around after the show and point our noses up past the warehouses towards the promise of more stars in the sky someday. Happy fall, people.

58 N. 3rd Street, Williamsburg

I like that Monkeytown claims on their website that they “serve experimental cuisine and classic dishes from a country that doesn’t exist.” Beautiful. And while I haven’t dined there, I can attest to the fact that Monkeytown offers art from a museum that doesn’t exist. Or maybe a genre that doesn’t exist. Or maybe it’s not about the art (which is usually visual and aural in design) at all, but rather how it’s delivered. Surrounded by screens and sound and communal seating, Monkeytown is more experience than show, more see-for-yourself than here’s-what-it’s-all-about-thank-you-very-much.

1087 Broadway, Bushwick

Goodbye Blue Monday is a bit like a garage sale of experimental art, music and poetry. There’s a scent of that sweet panoptic libation in the air here, the one that, with one sip, makes us feel the joy of art in everything and in everyone. And why not, right? Bring down the ivory towers of art and culture and make it known henceforth that all persons—no matter taste, expertise, scene, etc.—shall invent and share and engage in the universal discourse of creation. And in a cool bar, no less. Make it known, Goodbye Blue Monday. Make it known.

alan semerdjian

Alan Semerdjian is a writer, musician, English teacher, and occasional visual artist. Besides LI Pulse, his work has appeared in Newsday, Adbusters, Chain, The Lyric Review and numerous other print and online publications, anthologies, and chapbooks. His first full-length book of poetry is In the Architecture of Bone (Genpop Books 2009). You can visit him digitally at and find out about his music at