10 Must Visit Live Music Venues In Delhi
Delhi’s Live Music Scene rests on shifting sands as it changes character fortnight by fortnight. We at SoundTree Magazine catch up on the ten hotspots in the city where all the action happens out there where the creatures of the night linger to groove to music that tells their story and catches their vibe.
Hard Rock Cafe, DLF Place Saket
A state-of-the-art sound system, a huge stage and the Hard Rock logo in the backdrop are reasons why every big or small band in India wants to play here, without exception. From the biggest bands doing exclusive Hard Rock Cafe Tours to newer artists performing regularly, it has definitely been instrumental in developing the live music ethos in Delhi. With one of the more aesthetically appealing bars in the city (not to mention a well stocked one) and three different seating areas that together cover a large space, Hard Rock Cafe is not a surprise on this list.
Striker Pub and Kitchen, Vasant Kunj
Known for its thriving beer and music scene, Striker Pub and Kitchen hosts some of the best live music acts in the city. Throughout the week there are artists lined up to entertain patrons, of most conceivable genres that there is an audience for. The pub is widely spaced and can incorporate large groups – the more the merrier they say. We’re talking about that pleasant feeling when you walk into a bar and find peppy music, friendly bartenders and the clinking din of beer mugs. The stage is right in the middle of the place and is clearly visible from the floor above, so everyone gets to watch the band perform even on full house days. The music falls right in line with the vibe of the place and Strikers is a clear favourite.
Club Pangaea, Chanakyapuri
The latest entrant into Delhi’s nightlife scene, Pangaea revels in being one of the most exclusive clubs in the world and they started their Delhi chapter with a bang, hosting no less than DJ Kaskade for one of their front running gigs. Their dance floor is purportedly every inch of the club, from toughened sofa leather seats to the granite edges of tables. International artists are going to be a regular, and it bodes well to not plan your night, as behind the closed club doors a crazy, crazy night awaits.
Downstairs at Zo, Hauz Khas Village
This tiny cafe has caused flutters in the indie music circuit, providing the space for several upcoming local bands to come and perform, so if you’re on the lookout for some new music, this is the place to be. An ornate and brightly lit stairwell will guide you to this place, one floor below the Mediterranean themed Zo. The decor has been kept nonchalant, and you feel like you are lounging in your own living room. Furthermore, the cafe makes it to our favourite places for the sheer enthusiasm in actively promoting artists who have involved themselves with underground genres and cater to niche audiences.
Blue Frog, Mehrauli
With a roof top cafe, an outside area and the club space there is never a lack of options at Blue Frog. It remains a potent combination of good music and impeccable taste. The futuristic design makes the place aesthetically appealing, and Blue Frog boasts of an up-to-date live sound system, making for memorable live shows. It has become the launch pad for various new artists in India giving it a Whiskey-a-GoGo like reputation for the Indian music landscape. With a blend of new artists and seasoned musicians performing at least thrice a week, Blue Frog seldom disappoints. Whether your night is about dancing like crazy to some great EDM, or just hanging out with friends, Blue Frog changes its avatar every night.
Raasta, Hauz Khas Village
Whether you’d like to sit outside in the verandah overlooking the Village, or in the smoking lounge or be young in a crowd of grooving fans, Raasta is the current ‘it’ place to be. Some curly fries and chicken wings and some beer, to keep tap with the music, or a sufi night for fusion music lovers will inevitably be the order of the day. You could sign yourself up for Karaoke on specific nights and they will make sure you have a good time.
Smoke House Deli, Hauz Khas Village
Beautifully done Delhi landscape sketches to keep you company in your introspection, Smoke House Deli makes for a great place to catch a gig, to groove to the latest electronic techno-funk EDM (whatever floats your boat right now) as they have a pulse on the latest music being produced out there. (Not to forget they make some mean cocktails to keep you floating.)
Cafe Ludus, Saket
While this place is pretty enough for you to contemplate a date, we remember spending some fun zumba nights out here. Come night and Cafe Ludus transforms from the find-yourself-a-book-and-a-corner to a bustling place full of energy. Located in the heart of the city, it means you won’t have to drag yourself to the other end of the city if you have to listen to some decent music.
Rodeo, Connaught Place
If you’re a fan of the oldies goldies, and country and rock is the way you roll, this place will keep you entertained in the heart of the city, with Mexican fare, a live band and songs from the wistfully remembered cassette era. Put your cowboy hat on, and prepare for a nostalgia trip, along with a simultaneous food gala.
Blues, Connaught Place
Cafe Blues has remained a hotspot of activity for those who enjoy live music since yesteryears, before it became the regular thing to do. One of the oldest and the most consistent in terms of their enterprise, it has never failed to deliver. Moreover, they have music for everyone – whether it be commercial, house, rock by their in-house DJ and some truly divine live music acts.