City: Chicago, IL
Address: 2424 North Lincoln Ave.
Coolest Feature: Its horseshoe-shaped balcony
One of the newer establishments on this list, Lincoln Hall officially opened in October 2009. The mid-sized venue was built inside of the old Fullerton Theatre building, famous for being the spot where FBI marksmen waited to make sure John Dillinger didn't escape from the Biograph Theatre across the street on the night of his demise. Inside of the castle-like exterior are two levels, and the first floor is the best place to soak in the high-quality sound system. The stage is less than three-feet above the ground, giving patrons the impression that performers are literally standing right in front of them. The curtains absorb excess sound and the soundboard is kept well out of the way, creating as much space as possible. Lincoln also features a restaurant, which is open prior to and during sets. Though it's one of Chicago's newest live music venues, it's quickly establishing itself as one of the best.