Friday, 30 January 2009

Popeye's Gang

I forget where exactly, but here, in a shop window, kind of an antique shop if I remember correctly, you can find Popeye with his crew.
Who's in Popeye's gang? Let's meet them.
A frog, a cock and face, a monkey, a tengu mask, and a boxed wind-up sex couple.

What would Olive think?

Almost as cool as CHIPS

Mag wheels and a look that Jon and Ponch would give the thumbs up to.

Koenji style cop bikes bringing an '80s touch of nostalgia.

Lo Riders

Posted these before, but thought I'd add them in their own category.

Dotted about the streets they can be found. Some rotting away, parked up on the way to the pub, came out and forget where you parked it...or maybe forgot you rode it at all.

Train Station

South exit/entrance, depending on your direction of walking.
Head right and you'll cross the road and see PAL arcade.

Abe's 'tache

Ex-Prime Minsster Abe sporting a rather fetching moustache in the mean streets of Koenji.

Thursday, 29 January 2009

Trainee Hair Dresser

Took the rubbish down to the rubbish container from my apartment one early morning...
Nearly shat myself when I went in and found this bag lying open.
Thought they'd been a bit of a serious...

Fuckin' trainee hair dressers.

Meccha of Pachinko

It's a gambling parlour.
Take my word for it, it's bloody huge.
All that effort to make this eyesore.
A blot on Koenji's landscape.

Opposite is a 24-hour Jeans Mate, just out of interest.

Slot Jockeys

Silver balls are not just for killing werewolves.
In Japan, men and women transfer their hard-earned cash into these metallic spheres and push a few buttons and twist a few knobs to get more silver balls.
Homelessness awaits...

Sunset Koenji style

Viewed from my apartment in Koenji.

Looking towards the station.


This place is just up the road from me.
Used clothes, as is the norm in Koenji.
Also has a good selection of mags outside, covering local bands and clubs.

Wednesday, 28 January 2009

Record Boy

Down in the back streets lurks this grotty record shop situated at the top of a creaking stairway.
I say grotty, but only by appearance. It has character.

Strictly for hardcore punk and the like, it throws in a lot of Japanese bands mixed in with European and American.

Books and Sake

For that fabulous combination of drinking and reading.
Here is "Book Sake" in Koenji.

Little motorbikes

Not even coming up to your waist, just over your knee in some cases, these little bikes can be found on in Tokyo.
A few here in our very own Koenji.
A little Ducati type stands as a display outside a hair salon, and a few more outside a clothes shop.
In a country where everything is made small and compact, these stand above the rest.

Gentleman's Relaxation Zone

Not quite offering the services that somewhere like Kabuki-Cho might offer, Koenji still has a small area for the late-night businessman to pop in on his way home from a 16-hour day.

Just a few sex parlours, with some dodgy looking blokes outside to usher you away in case you might have the urge to stray into their "no foreigners" establishments.

Star Case

Once again, was turned down the chance to take some pics in Star Case.

Took this one on my way out...

Call the Cops

As Shaun Ryder would have said, "call the cops".
Burnt out van in an apartment building round the corner from OK supermarket.
Brought a tear to my eye, as a sight like this can sometimes be seen in the streets of England.
Made me feel right at home.
Just need to find a shopping trolley in the river and a sofa/TV combo outside in someones front garden to complete the trio.

Bird of Prey

Lots of hair salons in Koenji, but only one with a hawk outside.
Just around the corner from "Olympic".
This little chap sits outside all day, then when the shop closes, his owner takes him for a walk.
I say walk, as he's perched on his owners arm...

Tuesday, 27 January 2009

European Papa

Small record/CD shop.
Many a rarity can be found.
Bootlegs on both Cd and DVD.
Little cat as a member of staff, should you need any assistance.

Koenji 20000v

First 2 bands were a bit tame, surprisingly for this place, but the last one finished on a high.
Actually, the first band was a guy playing 45-minutes of feedback.
A few random heads were nodding, but not everyone's cup of tea.
A quick break in between bands and it's a quick trip to the store to stock up on alcohol around the corner.
GEAR is also in the same building and people sometimes share their time between the two venues.
No loitering outside. They seem quite determined to not let you either drink or generally hang around the place during or after the shows.