There is something about Melbourne that draws all the musical types. There are few cities that can compete with its innovative, avant-garde, eclectic morphing maze of sounds. Everywhere you turn there is something different, something you’ve never heard before, played to you in the hippest bars you’ve ever seen. And with more venues and working musicians than any other place in Australia, it’s considered the Australian capital of live music. But, like all cities, this concrete labyrinth holds many traps to the uninitiated, innocent traveler. And with so much experimentation with sounds happening here, you may find yourself traumatized, by horrendous musical concoctions if you go unprepared and stumble into the wrong place. Which is exactly why we’ve created this Top Music Venues in Melbourne guide so you can rest assured you’ll see only the best musicians in the best bars while traveling through Melbourne. Be sure to add your favorites to your BUCKiTDREAM list so others can also happily traverse Melbourne’s musical landscape. Alright, let’s get into it!
It’s Always Popping At Section 8 An open-air bar in a shipping container with old wooden pallets instead of chairs and the walls covered in intricate street art masterpieces. Smack-bang in the middle of Chinatown, Section 8 has hosted everything from rap battles, dance battles, block parties, and some of the finest up-and-coming musicians around covering a smorgasbord of genres. This bar screams cool, making you feel as though this is the place to be. A perfect venue to spend a summer’s afternoon or evening.
Address: 27-29 Tattersalls Lane, Melbourne, VIC, 3000
Get Jazz All Over You At the Bennetts Lane Jazz Club Easily Melbourne’s most iconic jazz venue (named the greatest jazz venue in the world by Lonely Planet), some of the world’s biggest musicians have graced Bennetts’ its stage, including Prince, Justin Timberlake, and The Cat Empire. Every night of the week both international and local acts take to the stage and take you on a tour of the many expressions of jazz. Bennetts Lane has two areas. One that is a relaxed, sit-down affair, and one that is far more upbeat – perfect for dancing the night away. A better experience is hard to come by in Melbourne!
Address: 25 Bennetts Ln, Melbourne VIC 3000, Australia
The Cherry Bar Makes For a Cherrific Night! This bar is right at home on AC/DC Lane, showcasing classic rock and soul music. DJs play music as wide-ranging as it comes, providing something for everyone to rock out to. As well as great music, Cherry Bar stocks an impressive collection of brews with beers from all over the world making guest appearances. This venue is so intoxicating, Noel Gallagher (if you don’t know who that is, this might not be the bar for you) was left enamored during Oasis’ Australian tour, and he quickly made an offer to purchase it.
Address: AC/DC Lane, Basement 103-105, Flinders Lane, Melbourne, VIC, 3000
Meet Me At The Corner Hotel, Richmond A hotel with a musical history that runs deeper than the beer through its carpets. Many generations of musos have come here to worship at the feet of the mellifluous sounds. This venue has catapulted many massive bands into stardom, so it’s ideal if you want to see quality bands before their music is tainted by ego and label pressures into the cookie-cutter pop music machine. The rooftop is a particular highlight to be used in those moments of desperately needed respite so you need to cool off from all the bopping with. A piece of trivia: Jack White concocted the Seven Nation Army riff during a soundcheck here.
Address: 57 Swan St, Richmond VIC 3121, Australia
Music is God At The Reverence Hotel This award-winning heritage pub provides a dizzying variety of national and international acts and word of its exceptional array of bands has spread far beyond the reaches of Victoria. The Reverence drips hipster and Mexican – or Mexican Hipsters – in the best of ways. And for those times then the music is overwhelming, the stretching beer garden has a foosball table and pool tables. And the food on offer somehow manages to be stupidly cheap and magnificently tasty. Definitely worth a visit!
Address: 28 Napier St, Footscray VIC 3011, Australia
And now you should have a good idea where to go for your music kicks when in Melbourne. You can thank us later! Now the time for preparation is over and the time for action is upon us, so get yourself out there and give your ears a treat! If you like what you’ve read please share it with anyone who might benefit from it.