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psy, tokyo


Located just under ten minutes' walk from the JR Shinjuku station's East Gate, hidden amongst the decadent establishments and multitude of neon lighting that is Tokyo’s Red Light District of Kabukicho, lies Bar PSY. It's easy to miss; a small brown illuminated sign bearing the bar's name and an illustration of a Jamie Hewlett-esque possible sister to Tank Girl is the only clue as to its existence on the street. Once you've walked up a flight of stairs or two and made your way into the bar proper - and after your eyes adjust to the dimmed lighting - any true metal head would be a fool not to feel at home.

Inside you'll find all your metal heart desires out of a bar and more. The walls are adorned with metal album cover art and tour posters, photos, stickers and all other manner of metal paraphernalia. The bar is cosy, with a capacity for perhaps twenty to thirty customers, but this serves the bar well, as it enables patrons to intermingle with the bar staff and each other very easily, giving it a “home-away-from-home” feeling to regulars and non-locals alike.

A giant flat-screen TV sits over the bar, playing concert DVDs of bands the likes of Slayer, Metallica, Sepultura, Iron Maiden and many more. Should the sound not be on, the PA will blare metal from either a CD deck (their wall of metal albums is well stocked), an iTunes library, and failing that, Youtube. Slips of paper and pens are distributed to customers with the drinks list as you take a seat; you can request ANYTHING, be it ear-piercing Norwegian Black Metal from a well-worn CD, or some obscure J-pop from a video online.

The drink menu is well priced for a bar in Tokyo, with beers costing around ¥500, and something like a Jack Daniels and Coke costing around the ¥600 to ¥700 mark; the variety is ample taking into account the bar’s size and the amount of customers they get each night. Besides, if you wanted a $400 bottle of champagne or a cocktail with ground unicorn horn in it, you wouldn’t be drinking in a metal bar, would you?

The staff are polite, courteous and more than happy not only to serve you but also to join in on conversation, or as the night progresses, shenanigans. Owner Yukio, originally from Osaka, is a character in himself, and whether working behind the bar or dropping in on his night off for a couple of hours is always happy to have a chat and a drink with anyone visiting his bar. Previous co-owner Natsu reflects the same attitude with a more laid-back air, however this member can’t attest to his presence at PSY since opening his own establishment, Bar Zero. A recent addition has been Masami, a welcoming, entertaining and funny drink-slinger from the now-defunct Rock Inn Current.

What more do I need to say; if you’re in Shinjuku and feel like a drink with fellow Metal fanatics, look no further. \m/


Opening hours

8:00pm to 6:00am, every day

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