"The Next Phase" promotional poster for the reopening of Phase One record store and bar

Music, Food & Drink, Featured

6th December 2021

Phase One to Reopen After 8 Week Refurbishment

Phase One at 40 Seel Street will reopen on the 9th December after an almost eight week refurbishment. The bar has now evolved to incorporate a record store into what it has to offer. If you haven’t visited Phase One’s courtyard for a few drinks yet, the 10th December launch night is the time to do so! The venue note that everyone is welcome.

The origins of Phase One

In May 2018, Liverpool gained a real treat as Graham Stanley and his team set up a pop up on Seel Street. It expanded on the record store above The Jacaranda Bar, and evolved into a grassroots venue thanks to Veso Mihaylov. Amongst the multitude of artists that Phase One hosted during this time were You Me At Six, Gabrielle Aplin, and Circa Waves. Feel you missed out? Me too!

Handling COVID-19

Live music was one of the hardest hit industries when it came to the pandemic, with one in three music industry jobs being lost. Punk/folk legend Frank Turner played an online fundraiser for the 300-capacity venue, which helped to keep them afloat.

Frank Turner
Frank Turner. Image Credit: Phase One (press release photos sent to LGSM)

But what about when lockdown eased and venues could cater to guests again, albeit only outside? Phase One adapted, of course! The Seel Street treasure opened up its beautiful, secluded courtyard to the public.

On a personal note, Phase One was one of the first bars I visited post-lockdown in spring of this year and I thoroughly enjoyed my time there. The servers were very friendly and all the food and cocktails that we ordered were delicious. The courtyard had a lively but cosy atmosphere, and I’d definitely recommend checking it out.

The courtyard at Phase One bar
Image Credit: Phase One (press release photos sent to LGSM)

The next phase

The record store is making a return to Phase One, led by renowned local DJ Namina Koroma. It’s the perfect way to support your favourite artists, as its chart-registered status means that purchasing a new release will count towards the artist’s chart placing. Prefer to try before you buy? Phase One have got you covered, as most of the vinyl on offer can be listened to digitally ahead of a purchase.

Live music is also making a comeback. But the venue emphasise that these won’t be ticketed gigs and adopt more of a ‘turn up or miss out’ attitude. An element of mystery will surround the music, with a policy of no advertising the artists ahead of their performances.

It has taken the best elements of the things that it has been since May 2018, and is repackaging them into a slightly shinier, permanent, and grown-up exterior.

Phase One Spokesperson, on the Phase One refurbishment

With regards to food and drink, coffees will be served seven days a week in the daytime. The bar will be table service only, with owner Graham Stanley noting that customers enjoyed this aspect of pandemic drinking. The cocktails are a must-try, all being twists on the classics with special ingredients that build on the original recipes.

People browsing a record store
Image Credit: Phase One (press release photos sent to LGSM)

Inclusivity at Phase One

One of my favourite things about this place is their attitude to inclusivity.

I want it to be somewhere my teenage daughter can visit, my 80 year old father and the guy who knows every Calypso song ever recorded. They should all be able to find a friend here.

Graham Stanley, Phase One Owner

The refurbishment also means that a disabled toilet has been installed.

Offering a vibrant 70s aesthetic with dark wood tones but a bright atmosphere, the refurbished Phase One needs to go on your To-See-List in Liverpool!

In need of more music inspo? Check out LGSM’s music-focused content here!

What about food and drink? We’ve got you covered!

Featured Image Credit: Phase One (press release photos sent to LGSM)