Venue Picks: The Standard Bowl


Address: Level 3, 383 Bourke St Surry Hills

The Standard Bowl is my new favourite venue in Sydney. There is bowling, there is live music, there is alcohol, there is a pool table, downstairs there is Johnny Wongs Dumpling Bar and it is free entry…what more could you ask for?  

There have already been some great gigs, including D.D Dumbo, The Griswolds and I Know Leopard keep, with a gig line up that is updated weekly, this is the place to be on a Saturday night in Sydney.

The vibe:  Grungy 50’s style arcade. It is very cool, and you will instantly feel a bit cooler by just stepping inside.

What to drink: $7 PBR Cans. Pretty standard drinks menu.

Who you’ll see there: Hipster hotties, gig goers, people having fun.

When’s best to go: It is definitely best to go on a busy night because the atmosphere is much more exciting (so Friday or Saturday) also the gigs are generally better on these nights. But if you are just going for a bowling sesh go Thursday, there will be less of a crowd to take away from your bowling time. You can spend a long time in this place and not get bored, so plan to spend most of your night here.

Venue in a song: “Twist and Shout” by The Beatles

Tonight Service Bells and Claws and Organs are playing, why not check it out?


By Sophie Henry


Venue Picks: Upstairs Beresford


The words ‘Upstairs Beresford’ and ‘indie music’ go hand in hand with each other on Sydney’s Inner City nightlife scene. This trendy Surry Hills hang is another one of Justin Hemmes’ Merivale stars, encouraging local bands to ‘take up residency’ at The Beresford, such as Hey Geronimo, Louis London and SAFIA.

The vibe: You’re going to have a fun night. It’s going to be a chilled one, but you’re going to dance to some great tunes and get a really elated kind of feeling from the people around you. And if you want to take a break to hang somewhere, mingle, and chat for a bit, there’s always the downstairs option.

What to drink: They do some killer classic vodka mixes here (ask for a Vodka Sunrise), but they also have a fine selection of cocktails (if not a little pricey), including highlights such as the Salted Butterscotch, Mixed Berry Sling and Poached Pear cocktails. Find the menu to tingle your tastebuds here.

Who you’ll see there: Young professionals and hipster hotties.

When’s best to go: Friday and Saturday nights are usually a sure-fire win at The Beresford for great live music, but it’s also worth knowing that they have $5 Happy Hour on every day from 5-7pm for some nice chilled drinks after work or uni.

Venue in a song: “I’ll Be There” by Hey Geronimo


By Erin Rooney


Venue Picks: The Barber Shop

The Barber Shop

Hidden away in a dark little corner of Sydney city, The Barber Shop is a secret music gem for all lovers of jazz and French tattooed bar tenders.

When I first heard their name “The Barber Shop”, I got really excited by the prospect of walking in to find a barbershop quartet singing sweet poppy tunes. Whilst there was no singing quartet, the venue rocked a 1920s look and a cosy space, hosting a smooth, smooth five-piece jazz band on Thursday nights. Amongst their music services, they also offer hair cuts to men with a free cocktail in the process, serve local crafted cider The Apple Thief and create exceptionally pretty (though pricy) cocktails.

Full to the brim, the crowd is spread with in-the-know, young, trendy professionals cooling off after work and a couple of older jazz lovers here and there. The whole back alley carries this same feel, with whiskey bar The Baxter Inn just opposite, leaving options open to kick on after you’ve had your fill of cool jazz (their Whiskey Apples are to die for!).

You can find The Barber Shop down an alleyway at 89 York Street, Sydney – don’t forget to don your finest dapper outfit.

This venue in a song:

By Erin Rooney