North Carolina roadhouse is probably the best description for The Kraken, a live music hub that looks a bit like a dressed up shack on the side of the road just west of Chapel Hill. The structure looks exactly as it sounds, a one-story, wooden building with ample front porch space that sits on a large plot of land. The space is used to house some of the best live music in the Triangle, music genres ranging from honky tonk to the annual Krakenfest that celebrates the Chapel Hill dive bar’s anniversary with a little live heavy metal.
Opened in 2009, the space looks like it might have been opened in 1909, which is a huge compliment for a space that uses its surroundings well to feel remote despite the relatively close proximity to the Triangle’s largest cities. Inside, a black and white checkerboard floor serves as the foundation for the small L-shaped bar. The space is dotted with end tables, couches and coffee tables in a mismatched array of very dive bar-friendly furniture. An elevated stage can be found on one end of the interior space for indoor shows as seasonality dictates, the gravel parking lot out back used for outdoor shows.