It\u0027s 9 p.m. on a typical Saturday night, but it feels like New Year\u0027s at the Big Bang. Two dueling pianists are pounding out tunes. The crowd \u0026#8213; a mix of 20- to 40- somethings \u0026#8213; is loving it. Liz, Amanda, and I squeeze in at the last empty table. \u0022I can feel my purse vibrating,\u0022 shouts Liz, whose purse collection is a thing to be admired.Tempe\u0027s pulsing Mill Avenue is playground to more than 58,000 Arizona State University students during the school year. If you\u0027re not one of them, Mill Avenue is probably not the first place you\u0027d think of to while away a warm summer night. But the local music scene has matured in the last few years, the jangly pop of the 1990s giving way to jazz, rock, folk, and bluegrass. It draws a correspondingly more grown-up audience.\u0026#160;\u0026#160;After darkAt the Big Bang ($3 cover Sun-Thu, $6 cover Fri-Sat; 501 S. Mill Ave., Ste. B-101; 480\/557-5595), the dueling pianists know how to warm up a crowd. Five minutes into our visit, we women find ourselves in a sing-off against the men, with volume being the criterion for which sex earns a shot on the house. The song is Chuck Berry\u0027s \u0022My Ding-A-Ling,\u0022 and the men definitely win.\u0026#160;The next stop is R\u0026#250;la B\u0026#250;la Irish Pub and Restaurant ($2 cover Fri-Sat; 401 S. Mill; 480\/ 929-9500), just up the street. Along with a cozy interior, R\u0026#250;la B\u0026#250;la has Smithwick\u0027s\u0026#8213;a Guinness-brewed ale that\u0027s rarely found in Arizona\u0026#8213;as well as some of the city\u0027s best bands. \u0022I\u0027ve been missing out all this time,\u0022 Amanda sighs as we watch the Keltic Cowboys work their bagpipes, bass, and banjo. \u0022I\u0027ve never been out in Tempe.\u0022\u0026#160;\u0026#160;A pub crawl requires crawling, so we set out for Rio Salado Brewing Company\u0027s Salt River Saloon (cover charge varies; 605 S. Mill; 480\/829-6775). It\u0027s a small space, and the rock band\u0027s monster amplifiers do more than fill it. We resort to jotting notes on napkins to communicate: \u0022Leave your hearing aids @ home,\u0022 writes Liz.Mill\u0027s End Espresso ($; breakfast, lunch, and dinner daily; 310 S. Mill; 480\/829-0755) is our final stop, a quieter reprieve with an outdoor patio. The cafe\u0027s warm cr\u0026#234;pes \u0026#8213; smeared with sugar and butter or Nutella before being folded into a portable package \u0026#8213; are the perfect to-go food for a late-night stroll along Mill Avenue, listening to street musicians.