Discover Koenji’s Underground Live Music Scene

Koenji is Tokyo’s original alternative town. Located on the suburban Chuo Line, Koenji is out west enough to thin out the crowds but close enough that it is not too suburban. Populated by artists, musicians and creatives of all types, Koenji has always had a reputation for being the best in the underground scene, especially in music. Venues range from tiny hole in the walls to larger concert spaces and host a variety of local and foreign bands to up and coming artists.

  • 01

    Jams and gigs at Jirokichi

    Jams and gigs at Jirokichi

    Jams and gigs at Jirokichi

    Jirokichi is a cozy venue known for hosting a variety of bands from underground artists to jazz and blue bands. There are gigs and shows almost every night of the week and they almost always sell out so be sure to order tickets in advance. Shows average around 3,000 yen and the venue is located close to Koenji station so concert goers can easily run for their last train home. Jirokichi also occasionally hosts blues jam sessions. Guitars and bass are available for rent and a keyboard and drums are provided. Entrance fee is just 500 yen and blues fans are welcome to just enjoy the music.

    JIROKITCHI
    rating

    4.0

    4 Reviews
    place
    Tokyo Suginami-ku Koenjikita 2-3-4 Koenji Building B1F
    phone
    0333392727
  • 02

    Drinks and a DJ at Kappo Disco Daizo

    Drinks and a DJ at Kappo Disco Daizo

    Drinks and a DJ at Kappo Disco Daizo

    Looking for a meal, drinks and show? Kappo Disco Daizo calls itself Japan’s first izakaya with a DJ and truly boasts this honor with a DJ or show almost every night of the week. The food ranges from sashimi platters to various fried meats and the staff highly recommends their variety of sake options. The izakaya is cozy with the DJ booth close to the diners so they can participate as well. The staff and patrons are friendly and encourage a communal atmosphere. From American hip hop to J-Pop, the DJs play a variety of tunes and even let the diners try their own hand at turning. Kappo Disco Daizo is open from 6PM - 5AM with various closing days.

    Drinks and a DJ at Kappo Disco Daizo

    Drinks and a DJ at Kappo Disco Daizo

    割烹DISCO(ディスコ) 大蔵
    place
    東京都杉並区高円寺北2-38-14 フジビル1F
    phone
    0368752947
  • 03

    Check out books, vinyl and a band at SUBstore

    Check out books, vinyl and a band at SUBstore

    Check out books, vinyl and a band at SUBstore

    SUBstore stands for Small Unique Bookstore and unique it truly is. Not only does the bookstore sell books, it also has a full bar and serves Indonesian cuisine for lunch and dinner. The store also hosts gigs in its small space, featuring underground artists in a handful of mixed genres, from folk to video game inspired jazz. The shows are inexpensive, normally ranging from 500 yen to 1000 yen. The ambience is relaxed and unpretentious and the owners are friendly and ready with recommendations. Part bookstore, part cafe, part bar and part live house, SUBstore is the perfect place to spend a relaxing evening getting to know the local culture of Koenji. SUBstore is open from 3PM - midnight and closed on Tuesdays.

    S・U・B STORE
    place
    東京都杉並区高円寺北3-1-12 宮應北ビル2F
    phone
    080-4180-8338
    no image
  • 04

    Experience hardcore punk at 20,000 Denatsu

    Experience hardcore punk at 20,000 Denatsu

    Experience hardcore punk at 20,000 Denatsu

    The most well known venue, 20,000 Denatsu, is the largest and loudest venue on this list. Best known for hosting noise and hardcore bands, this venue has an impressive sound system that surprisingly does not bother the neighbors at all. This new venue replaced the popular venue 20,000 Volts after the previous building caught on fire. Now, 20,000 Denatsu is louder and better than ever hosting up and coming punk and metal bands for the moshers. The bar provides plenty of cheap drinks to keep the crowd moving. Shows are affordable, ranging from 500 yen to 3,000 yen.

    Higashikoenjinimandenatu
    place
    Tokyo Suginami-ku Kouenjiminami 1-7-23L-GRAZIA east Koenji B-1
    phone
    0363049970

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