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15 Places Every Music Lover In Melbourne Should Know About

For everyone who loves to spin some vinyl or get some live music action.

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1. Basement Discs, Melbourne CBD

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This underground CD and record store is stocked wall to wall with a huge variety of music, but their main focus is on blues, folk, and rock. They also host regular in-store gigs, which are a real treat to watch. If want to spend a couple of hours working your way through a great array of CDs and records in Melbourne, this is definitely a place to hit.

2. Reverence Hotel, Footscray

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This popular watering hole in Melbourne's inner west is one of a kind, hosting local and international acts of every genre from rock to pop to trance. The hotel's Mexican menu is also damn good.

3. Polyster Records, Fitzroy

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One of the city's most popular record stores, Polyster is a haven for Melbourne's biggest music lovers. Polyster stocks an awesome mix of vinyl records, an array of great alternative music literature, and is a big supporter of local music talent.

4. The Corner Hotel, Richmond

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Most music lovers who grew up in Melbourne will remember the first time they snuck into the Corner Hotel without any ID. It's an iconic spot just a stone's throw out of Melbourne's CBD and just seems to be getting better and better. 2015 saw it host Charli XCX, Azealia Banks and more recently, Conrad Sewell. It's not your standard Melbourne pub - it's an electric space that mixes good music with good booze.

5. Thomas' Music, Melbourne CBD

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The Melbourne music scene isn't all live bands and underground record stores. Thomas' Music, nestled at the Parliament-end of town is one of the few surviving music stores dedicated to classical music, opera, and ballet. Stocking an impressive collection of rare CDs and DVDs as they near their 100th year of business, it's safe to say that Thomas' is a pretty special place.

6. Evelyn Hotel, Fitzroy

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The Evelyn, located on one of the busiest corners of Fitzroy has hosted bands like British India, Architecture in Helsinki, and Bliss 'n' Eso. The landmark pub with its chipping old world charm and popular beer garden has been a thriving pad for great live music and ice cold beer for years. One of the most loved spots in the north, the Evelyn has great live rock and grunge music with a garage atmosphere.

7. Music Swap Shop, Carlton

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The Music Swap Shop is a Melbourne institution. The second hand store works by selling an array of instruments from their own pool of stock, as well as instruments taken on consignment. Anyone trying to start a garage band has no doubt hit up the Swap Shop to check out their guitars, amps, and stereos.

8. The Night Cat, Fitzroy

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Known for their famous graffiti banner, the Night Cat is one of the city's best jazz and reggae bars. With a French boudoir feel, the popular music spot regularly hosts live jazz bands, funk and reggae gigs, and salsa dancing. The crowd is a mix of young and old but there's a real communal vibe on jazz nights, especially when the drinks are flowing and the lights are dimmed.

9. The Toff in Town, Melbourne CBD

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Nestled on one of the top levels of the famous Curtin House, the Toff in Town is one of the city's most loved after-work bars. The Toff has hosted incredible drag performances and sets with killer new DJs, alongside rave and trance dance parties on weekends. Make sure you get there early to snag a good spot in a booth.

10. The Searchers, Fitzroy

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The Searchers is a real gem in Fitzroy's hub of hip cafes and artsy stores. The unpretentious record shope opened in 2008 and has become a real gathering spot for locals, with an impressive array of vinyl, art, and music books. For the bookish type who collects punk and disco vinyls, the Searchers is a Smith street must-visit.

11. Max Watt's, Melbourne CBD

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Formally known to all as Hi-Fi Bar, this sweaty basement, smack bang in the centre of town is loved for its sunken dance floor and moody vibe. One of the most well-known venues in the city, it's likely that your best muso mate has a great story that starts with: "This one time at Hi-Fi...".

12. Northside Records, Fitzroy

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If you worship vinyl, Northside Records will blow your mind. The Fitzroy record store boasts one of the best collections in Melbourne with soul, dubstep, disco, dancehall, and funk. The owner Chris Gill actually looks like he just walked out of a '70s discotheque and proudly hangs a glittering disco ball in the centre of the store, which shines bright as the smooth tunes of bygone songs soundtrack your visit.

13. The Esplanade Hotel, St Kilda

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One of Melbourne's best pubs, the Espy - as the locals call it - has is all: A long history of supporting local bands, weathered colonial character, and close proximity to the beach. There's nothing like cracking a cold one and enjoying a live rock gig here. Having been renovated and refurbished last year, the Espy is so ready for summer.

14. Culture Kings, Melbourne CBD

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The flagship Culture Kings store in Melbourne has become a number one stop for all things R&B and rap since it opened a few years ago. Culture Kings is the main stomping ground for lovers of hip hop, having hosted A$AP Rocky, Eric Bellinger, and Drake's "official barber". The smooth beats married with their killer street threads has made Culture Kings a real winner, as they offer their famous barber services alongside live DJ sets.

15. Hamer Hall, Southbank

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With lush interiors and an enormous seating capacity, Hamer Hall is a real jewel in the arts precinct of Southbank. The famed concert hall has amazing acoustics and regularly plays host to the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and Melbourne Chamber Orchestra.

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