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An essential city guide to Tokyo

The best nightclubs, art exhibits, bars and record shops in Tokyo

  • IN ASSOCIATION WITH BUDWEISER
  • 5 March 2019

Mixmag and Budweiser have partnered to bring the world BUDX, a global program that will unite and spotlight outstanding creative minds in music and culture in some of the leading cities around the world.

With a rich history of innovation within art, fashion and music, Tokyo is home to a vibrant and rousing cultural landscape. The city is brimming with locations to experience all that Japanese culture encompasses, from immersive museums, themed bars, record stores and exceptional nightclubs.

As the city is booming with a plethora of unique destinations, in order to explore the best it has to offer, you have to know where to look.

As Mixmag gets set to highlight Tokyo’s cultural leaders with BUDX in 2019, showcasing the innovators and creatives in various fields, here we’ll provide travelers with the must-see hotspots that reflect the city’s unique cultural output. Find your essential city guide to Tokyo below.

Clubs

VENT

Diving even deeper into Tokyo’s underground club scene, ravers will find their way to VENT, one of the most intimate venues in the city. With consistent bookings featuring international talent like Denis Sulta, Daniel Avery, Byron The Aquarius, Chaos In The CBD, Midland, tINI and more, this venue is for knowledgable house and techno heads who know what is currently buzzing on the global club circuit.

Contact

For those in search of Tokyo’s underground dance music scene, Contact is the place to start. The intimate venue is located in a basement within the buzzing Shibuya neighborhood and boasts stacked lineups with the likes of Dusky, Amelie Lens, Leon Vynehall, Radio Slave, Zip and more from across the house and techno spectrum. This is the gritty nightclub for the more refined revellers its stripped back aesthetic is ideal for long sessions on the dancefloor.

WOMB

Stationed in the center of Shibuya is Womb, one of the biggest nightclubs in Tokyo with a capacity of 1,000 that’s soundtracked by an array of dance music styles from drum’n’bass to techno. Here punters will find diverse line-ups, sometimes focusing on more underground artists while also mixing in the mainstream as well. Richie Hawtin, Marco Carola, Joseph Capriati and Friction have all graced WOMB’s DJ booth while it also fosters local talent throughout the week. Expect big sound and an immersive light show here.

Culture

Technique

For record diggers and vinyl DJs in search of deep cuts from the electronic music realm, Technique is undoubtedly the shop to visit. It stocks much of the newest house and techno releases from both local and international record labels and has a deep used section for those looking for a dusty session for rare finds. Aside from electronic music the shop also stocks a variety of styles and the Technique staff are as knowledgeable as they come if you’re looking for something specific.

DJ Bar Bridge

Tokyo is home to some of the best listening bars in the world, with an array of intimate spaces outfitted with high-fi systems serving delicious cocktails and local fare. DJ Bar Bridge is one best in the city. It was founded by the organizers behind nightclubs Contact and Vision, with an unrivaled attention to detail. Some of the finest local DJs come through to grace the DJ booth on a regular basis. Music aficionados looking for a place to kick back with some friends and have a few drinks should look no further.

TeamLab

Tokyo is home to an incredible collection of art exhibitions featuring both classic and contemporary pieces. That being said, taking the idea of immersive and interactive art installations to a new level is the TeamLab at the Mori Building Digital Art Museum in Odaiba, Tokyo. With an array of rooms and floors, such as Borderless, Athletics Forest, Future Park and Forest of Lamps, each space provides a uniquely immersive atmosphere, offering one of most awe-inspiring experiences in the world.

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Japanese version here

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