治外法権 (“Chigaihouken” literally “Extraterritorial Rights”) is a 34 year old rock bar hidden away in one of the alleys between Kiyamachi and Kawaramachi. The original and best rock bar in Kyoto, Chigaihouken is a bar for those who know that real men wear very very tight trousers and have their hair in long feathered perms. It’s for those of us who want to hear rock music so loud it’s a crime against humanity. For those of us who know that the amps should go all the way up to eleven and who don’t consider it a good night unless they walk away with a mild case of tinnitus. If like me you consider bands like Led Zeppelin, AC/DC, Deep Purple, Van Halen and White Snake (yes! White Snake!) to be Gods (probably Norse) walking among men, then this is the place for you. All other so-called rock bars are but mere imitations (you can actually hear your own voice in those places – imagine!). For ear-shattering machine-gun bending-the-laws-of-the-space/time- continuum rock – come to Chigaihoken! Here are a few (slightly tipsy) pictures:
To find Chigaihouken walk north on Kawaramachi and take the first alleyway on your right after the Bal departement store. Chigaihouken is on your right about halfway down the alley in the same building as “Transistor Radio” and “Blue Note”.
Open everyday: 8:00 pm ~ 6:00 am
You can find a map on the bar’s website here: LINK.