Bangkok Live Music: Hidden Gems

I scour the streets of Bangkok to unearth the unheralded hideaways supporting live music in the City of Angels. First stop, Wong Wian Yai…

Archie in all its glory

If you’re like me, and live quite a distance from the Wong Wian Yai area, it’s got to be something special to drag us out there on a Friday night. Thankfully, I found a place that’s worth making the cross-Bangkok pilgrimage. Archie, on Thanon Prachatibok 4, hosts N8 Solo Acoustic every Friday, with Animal Flower playing from 7pm – 10pm.

Archie is owned by Arnon Hoontrakul and his wife Toon. They’re visionaries and they have a sister branch called “Anya” on Thawi Wattana. The gorgeous brick interior of Archie is immediately striking, as well as the friendly, chilled vibes. They have the atmosphere locked down and they’re clearly trying to create something a little more modern and high-end, in a quite old-school area.

Only ingredients good enough for our own family are good enough to serve our customers

Arnon Hoontrakul

The burgers – wow. They have 21 different variations on the menu, a spectacular selection, and they come in all forms, lamb, pork, chicken and beef. Excellent quality on the burger front and I noticed an array of pizzas which looked mouth-watering and, reassuringly, a big woodfire oven. The benchmark of a quality pizza.

The bottled beer selection is vast and plentiful. There’s a wide selection of worldwide beers, and four very drinkable craft beers on draught, which was pleasing. I had two Brewdog Punk IPAs and was treated to my third for 1 baht. That’s a Friday special and I won’t lie, it caused a huge smile to spread across my face.

The music, delivered by the affable Animal Flower, is a range of covers from different eras, past and present. He loves to mix it up and challenge himself, interacting with the crowd and inviting requests with supreme confidence. He adds his own, unique twist on every cover and he’s a truly great musician – with charisma and the skills to match his good looks.

With the tasteful decor (love the genuine brick work), the quality of food, drink and music, and the cozy ambience, Friday nights at Archie are a winner and a great addition to Bangkok’s sprawling range of live, acoustic music joints. Bravo to the Hoontrakuls!

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