Belt out the classics at Karaoke EPOC.
Ever wondered why a crowd of revellers would spill out of a Soho laundrette, singing in unison and generally looking like they’re having a roaring good time? They’re not hyped about the range of detergents, because this is definitely not a laundrette. They’ve actually just had a session at Karaoke EPOC, the karaoke hidey-hole waiting inside.
I always found it odd to see so people queuing to get into a laundrette, so discovering its true identity explained a lot. Those who aren’t fooled by the facade will still have to look for Karaoke EPOC, as the first thing you encounter inside is Adanami Shobo, a second-hand Japanese bookshop. If you’re looking for manga, DVDs, posters, or video games, this is your stop, but the rest of us are in search of greater rewards. Karaoke EPOC lies at the back of the shop, and you’ll need to rendezvous with the person at the till to get in.
Happily, the reward for navigating this double-layer deception is a cheap and cheerful Japanese dive bar, one which could have wandered out of the backstreets of Roppongi. Festooned with fairy lights, the space is kitted out with four private rooms, each decked out with a karaoke machine. Your crew will then be treated to your dulcet tones, in either English, Japanese, Chinese, or Korean, with everything from Madonna to Alice in Chains available.
Any performance-related anxieties are soothed by the fact that Karaoke EPOC is entirely BYOB. Handily, this means you can plan for exactly how much Dutch courage you’ll require to belt out your go-to song. You can bring food in to counterbalance the effects of overindulging, or check out their recently-added food menu. Start warming up those vocal chords…
Location: 30 Brewer Street, Soho, W1F 0SS. Nearest station is Piccadilly Circus. See it on Google Maps.
Opening hours: 12-11pm, Monday to Saturday, and 12-10pm on Sundays.
Price: varies wildly depending on which size room you’d like, and when you want to go. The most basic price is £16 per hour, and you can find the full list here. They also ask for a deposit to confirm the reservation.
More information: visit their website.
Featured image: @irem.tumer