Image for Sydney’s Lansdowne Hotel Is Reopening As A Live Music Venue “With A Fucking Vengeance”

Sydney’s Lansdowne Hotel Is Reopening As A Live Music Venue “With A Fucking Vengeance”

Written by Emmy Mack on April 15, 2017

Happy fkn Easter Sydney, you’re getting The Lansdowne back.

The iconic rock den has been mouldering on the corner of City Road since its 2015 closure, its lifeless skeleton a dank reminder of the cultural black plague that’s been killing off our once vibrant city’s live music venues, one. by. one.

But it gives us gratuitous amounts of pleasure to report that — much like Superman, Jesus and Harry Potter before it — the mighty Lansdowne is returning from the grave anew, with two middle fingers squarely raised in the direction of the lockout laws.

And it’s in some bloody good hands, too.

The old girl has been snapped up by Jake Smyth and Kenny Graham, AKA the legends responsible for Newtown’s semi-secret rock n’ roll eats joint MARY’S BURGERS, and they’re keen to return her to her former glory as a live music funhouse.

“RIP?? Lol.” They posted on a new Instagram account for the resurrected Chippendale watering hole. “We’re back with a fucking vengeance…”

Speaking with Fairfax, Smith confidently added that “there’s a hole in the market for an intermediate-size room”, referencing the imminent demise of the beloved Newtown Social Club, just ten minutes down the road.

“We’ve been running this like a motherfucker.”

Renovations to the Lansy’s interior started back in February, and the dudes are gunning for a June relaunch of the new 250-cap space.

The old wonky neon sign will be brought back to life, the ground floor will house a new bar lined with chill-out sofas and a Detroit-style kitchen serving up pizzas (and maybe burgers). There’ll also be two levels of outdoor space, and the live tunes will happen upstairs now, not downstairs where iconic acts like You Am I, The Living End and The Go-Betweens once played.

Lansdowne

Image Via SMH / Edwina Pickles

As Fairfax reports, the music will go down in “a room dotted with pillars and a heritage fireplace, set up to accommodate fans in front of the stage, while casual listeners can be tucked away in corners”.

It’ll also apparently “utilise technology that will allow live recordings and broadcasting”.

Yep, it seems Smyth and Graham have got this shit figured out. No delusions of grandeur, just smart strategy. They’ve admitted that they’re “not expecting to make money out of live music”, while aiming to build a killer new vibe that will help it flourish anyway.

“Sydney is a very food-motivated city,” Smyth explains, adding: “It’s not about the food, it’s not even about music, it’s about culture.”

The pair want to make the Lansdowne “a destination”, somewhere “to hang” before and after the music is played. Oh, and FYI they’ve also got a staunch “no pokies” policy.

“We fucking hate them,” says Smyth.

And the boys won’t be doing it alone. They’ll be aided by a fellow legend in music booker Matt Rule (AKA one half of the Rule brothers who once ran the iconic Annandale Hotel).

“It’s all-in-one here and multi-tiered businesses are important to punters,” Rule says.

King. Oath.

This could be a legitimate game-changer people. Bring on June.

RIP?? lol. We're back with a fucking vengeance…

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