Top four places to catch a concert

William deLannoy

In our search to explore the best places to see a concert in the area, here’s what we found.

Tower Theater

Built in 1927 as a movie house, the Tower Theater in Upper Darby remained so until the 1970s, when it was discovered that the venue’s surprising acoustics made it a natural fit as a concert hall.

Noted for its high ceilings and art deco interior, the venue has an intimate feel and holds approximately 3,500 depending on seating arrangements.

There is balcony seating, but there aren’t really any bad seats in the house. A common criticism of the venue is the weak air conditioning, and many concertgoers have reported high temperatures and little air movement. Personally, we don’t find the atmosphere too stifling.

It is famous for the five-show stint David Bowie performed in 1972, and more recently the Tower has hosted the Rolling Stones and Radiohead. The Tower Theater is easily accessible by Villanova students, as it is a short walk from the 69th Street Terminal, the last stop on the R100.

Trocadero Theatre

Similar to the Tower Theater, the Trocadero Theatre, affectionately known as “the Troc,” also has an interesting history behind it.

According to the venue’s Web site, it first opened in 1870 and featured mostly vaudeville acts.

The venue was remodeled in 1986 as a concert hall. It is also the last 19th-century Victorian theatre still in operation in the United States. The venue has a general admission capacity of only 1200, with room for about 250 people on the balcony.

There is a bar on the second level. the Foo Fighters, My Chemical Romance and Taking Back Sunday have all played concerts at the Trocadero. Villanova students can take the R5 to Market East Station in Philly. The theatre is located at 1003 Arch St.

Electric Factory

True to its name, the Electric Factory is actually a converted electric factory located on 7th Street between Willow and Spring Garden Streets.

The venue is standing room only, with room for approximately 2,500-3,000 spectators.

For concertgoers over 21, there is a balcony and multiple bars off to the side, but, naturally, drink prices are ridiculous.

Tickets are decently priced, but some have complained about a muddy sound quality. Be sure to get there early to claim a spot, as it is all general admission.

Villanova students without a car will find that this is not the easiest venue to get to, as the trek usually involves a long walk or a cab ride from Center City.

Wachovia Center

It’s a stage few can play on and a venue even less can sell out. Needless to say, with a concert capacity of over 20,000, the Wachovia Center offers an experience unrivaled by any venue on this list.

Absurd Aramark prices notwithstanding, poor sound quality is the main problem for the Wachovia Center.

Then again, it’s important to note that sound quality is always suspect during arena concerts.

As long as the Wachovia Center continues to host big name acts that deserve to play its stage, huge crowds will accentuate the concert-going experience, and the Wach will remain a premier Philadelphia concert venue.

Finally, as any loyal member of ‘Nova Nation should know, the Wachovia Center is easily accessible by taking the R5 to Suburban Station and catching the Broad Street (Orange) subway line.

The sports complex is the last stop.