Published Sep 09, 2013In our annual Hangout Handbook, Exclaim! asks some of our favourite artists to discuss the hidden gems in their hometowns. Here, Endast's James Arsenian outlines his picks in Montreal, Quebec.
Foufounes Electriques (87 rue Saint-Catherine est)
Any metalhead worth their salt in the 514 has been absolutely wasted in this legendary bar and venue, the cheapest place to party in the country. Not uncommon to see legendary names in metal who tour through Montreal bringing the after party here.
Co-Op Katacombes (35 boulevard Saint-Laurent)
This bar and small venue is owned and operated by good people who support heavy music. Katacombes is a great place to catch a heavy show or have cheap beers on the patio. Also, the decor is metal as fuck — note the wall of skulls as you walk in the door. (www.katacombes.com/wp)
Sound Central (4486 avenue Coloniale)
In the heart of Montreal's Plateau district, Sound Central is easily Montreal's best record shop. The dude who runs this place breaks every indie store owner stereotype — he's friendly, bilingual and will help you find any album without judgement. (soundcentralstore.com/v4_fr/index.php)
Sin City Tattoos (4107 A rue Saint-Denis)
Sin City is your best bet to get inked in Montreal. Home to some seriously talented artists, the shop staff actively supports and contributes to the heavy music scene. Note the abundance of awards that grace the walls if you have any doubts. (sincitymontreal.com/en)
Restaurant Grenadine (2004 Hôtel de Ville)
The chef/owner of this tiny restaurant is a heavily-tattooed metal dude whose culinary creations will leave you wondering why you ever ate anything else. If you want an affordable high end meal and to not have to worry about dressing to impress anyone, this is your spot. The establishment's "no waste" and "buy local" policies are a definite plus. (www.grenadine.ca/en)
Big James Arsenian is a Montreal metalhead and member of Endast. When not teaching proper beard grooming techniques, he's hosting the Big James Morning Show on Youtube. Endast's new album, Thrive, hits shelves this fall.