When the beloved underground venue 285 Kent closed in January, a bunch of thinkpieces took stock of the local music scene. Some pronounced the club’s final night the end of Brooklyn as the country’s (and continent’s) music hub. “There are so many bands coming out of Toronto right now!” they argued. Whether it’s a cluster of venues in close proximity, overlapping groups of friends, or aesthetic commonalities that define a “music scene,” no one would feel any connection to it if it weren’t for what those venues, friends or aesthetics produced. The records made, the shows played—those are what matter. Toronto, Philly and San Francisco—even Columbus, for crying out loud—might all be experiencing a spurt of new bands, but we’ll be damned if New York hasn’t churned out the most consistently vibrant (and weird) records and live shows in the last 15 years. Here are eight bands helping to keep it that way.