An underground Thonglor nightclub that put artists and music first is storming the dance floor again in a two-story bar/club further west near the old quarter.
Opening Saturday, the club which drew loyal sweaty crowds to thumping drum ‘n bass and techno shows has more to offer than a modest dance space. Now there’s a vintage-themed bar serving food and six signature cocktails named after landmarks around the area. Wander further and discover more, such as forthcoming spaces for exhibitions and acoustic sets.
“I want to give people that sense of wonder when customers keep walking deeper into the space and feel surprised with each new room,” cofounder Makara “Q” Dolsuklert said at a Sunday night preview. “It should be a community where people gather to share their passion for the music they love.”
That’s what set Decommune apart from the start – its collectivist approach to treating long-suffering performers as partners.
In the bar, wake up and get into the groove with the fizzy Yaowarat (B380): London dry gin infused with osmanthus, plum, honey, and taling pling fruit pickles. For something more savory try the smoky Bang Lamphu (B333) which offers vodka topped with rock salt and chicken balls sprinkled with pepper. Additionally, there are also simple pours priced at THB180.
Walk past the bar and through dark black curtains to the dance floor, which is ready for live music or DJs spinning vinyl or digital. There, witness the venue’s stand-out feature, walls that come alive with interactive art, promising a new level of interactivity for crowds to lose their minds in. A terrace serves as a smoking area in the back.
Beyond that, the club is renovating the building’s first floor to repurpose it for art exhibitions as well as a separate extra music space for acoustic gigs such as jazz.
A jukebox where patrons can share music playlists is also planned. Founding partner Pathompol “New” Chanin said downstairs will be more mainstream musicians geared toward uni students while the second floor will be Decommune 2.0 – same music policy, but with an upgraded look and better drinks.
A year and a half after losing their original location to the pandemic and lease terms, Q believes the venue will thrive.
“We are billing ourselves as an organization, not just as a club or bar,” he said. “Decommune is an entertainment art collective,” he said. “We’re not making profit from selling alcohol or tickets; it’s more for the artists.”
That will mean recruiting more partners who share their vision.
“If you want to host a small-time event, then this is a good space for it,” he said.
Decommune opened in late 2017 in Thonglor’s Liberty Plaza before throwing their last party with a Phatfunk show in October 2020.
Its new home will be familiar to any who’ve been to minimalist speakeasy Ku Bar – it’s right below it on Phra Sumen Road, not far from the Democracy Monument and Khaosan Road. While there is no nearby rail service, it is located a short ride from the Chao Phraya River’s Phra Athit Pier and Khlong Saen Saep’s Phan Fa Bridge Pier, for those getting an early enough start.
Decommune will be open Tuesday to Sunday, with week nights reserved for normal bar nights, and music events on weekends.
469 Phra Sumen Road, 1st and 2nd floors
Wat Bowon Niwet, Phra Nakhon