🔖 6 min read

What do the famously hard-working Japanese salarymen do after a long day of work? Sing karaoke, of course! While some go to the izakaya (bar) and have a drink, nothing beats the stress-relieving euphoria of belting out some tunes with your friends or coworkers!

Did you know that there is a place in London that replicates the experience of Japanese-style karaoke? 

Karaoke EPOC is the name of a Soho based Karaoke Bar, which offers Karaoke rooms for 3-12 people (following social distancing standards, of course) as well as an event space. The machines feature music in three languages: English, Korean, and Japanese, with the third being the most popular.

Today, we’ll talk about the top ten most request and sung JPOP songs at Karaoke EPoc and why they’re so popular.

1. YOASOBI – 夜に駆ける

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“Yoru ni Kakeru” by the iconic musical duo Yoasabi is a catchy and powerful song that means “Racing into the Night.” 

Despite being a high-energy pop number, its lyrics tell the story of a depressed teenage girl who relies on the kindness of a boy who tells her not to end it all. Some netizens have even interpreted the boy as a symbol for Thanatos, symbolizing the girl’s obsession with death. Thankfully, the music video ends on a happy note.

The song is a wild ride from beginning to end, featuring vocals interspersed with addictive electronic music and a piano run that races up and down like the name of the track. The song takes flight with its melodious chorus and instantly recognizable instrumental break. 

It is easy to see why this song is so popular among karaoke-goers: with its angsty themes, soaring chorus, and poetic lyrics; it is certainly an earworm that can brighten up any day! “Yoru ni Kakeru” is one of those songs you can use to belt out all of your feelings!

2. 和田光司 – Butter-fly

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“Butter-Fly” is a  rock song by Koji Wada filled with funky guitars, synths, drums, and a whole lot of attitude. Anime fans will recognize it as one of the opening theme songs of Digimon Adventures. 

The song’s bridge features an exhilarating guitar solo to get your heart racing and plenty of vocal breaks to hype each other up with a quick “ikuyo!” 

As the second most-requested song, “Butter-fly” is a fun and explosive number to perform! It calls to mind air-guitaring with friends and jumping up on tables singing your heart out.

3. 椎名林檎 – 丸の内サディスティック

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The second the instrumental of “Marunouchi Sadistic” comes on, you are swept into the glory days of oldies music. With a breezy harmonica, pleasant piano, and the beautiful vocals of Sheena Ringo; the song is evocative of relaxing in a jazz lounge and the easygoing charm of city pop

Rich with nostalgia, the song’s lyrics speak about the city of Ginza, Buddhism, and searching for a way to “fly” or “ascend” as the narrator searches for Nirvana. It’s definitely a product of its time and very fun to sing along to. You and your friends can imagine being young Japanese people in 1999 while singing this song!

4. Arashi – Love So Sweet

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“Love So Sweet” is one of the most famous songs of legendary Japanese boy band Arashi. This alone already explains its popularity, but it is also an amazing song in its own right. 

In 2008, it was listed as one of The Best Singles of 2008. The song was also used as the theme song of “Hana Yori Dango 2,” the Japanese version of the smash hit TV series “Boys Over Flowers.” 

Some would describe it as a “vitamin bomb” because the moment the song starts, it brings about infectious positive energy! As the lyrics pass across the screen, your group will find yourselves singing along to its flowery ideals of romance and starry-eyed young love.

5. Spitz – チェリー

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“Cherry” by Spitz begins with a simple drum hit that explodes into a bevy of cheerful guitars and drums. Its upbeat tune, reminiscent of summer love, goes perfectly with the song’s romantic lyrics. Pleasant and easy to listen to, the song is perfect for a quick break between loud dramatic numbers and singing your heart out.

6. 米津玄師 – レモン

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Just like the previous song, this number is also named after a fruit. Unlike the previous entry on this list, “Lemon” is an emotional ballad. Its title is based on the evergreen saying “If life gives you lemons, make lemonade” but focused on the lemons part – symbolizing suffering.

Written from the point-of-view of a person who lost their beloved, the narrator resolves to remember their loved one by reliving the pain even if it hurts. They rationalize their self-destructive behavior by saying that it is worse to move on.

Sung by Kenshi Yonezu, the song expresses the difficulty of moving on from a relationship that gave you so much to remember. People have described the song as “unforgettable” and “visceral.” 

It is heartbreaking, angsty, and perfect for singing your heart out and crying with your friends! Whether it’s about lost love or frustrations, you take your pick!

7. GReeeN – Kiseki

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“Kiseki,” which translates to “miracle” is one miracle of a song! It manages to be a rock song while being nostalgic, uplifting, and gentle as well! 

The electric guitars blaring in the background form a gap moe contrast with the soft wholesome lyrics about young love and growing up together. By the end of the song, the couple decide to be together forever and always for more than a thousand years. Its sweet lyrics pull on the heartstrings while the rocking instrumental blasts in your ears.

One must watch the six minute and a half music video to fully experience the song and its story. However, you don’t need it to belt out “Kiseki” with your friends! Warning: bring tissues if the music video is playing on the karaoke machine.


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“Tentai Kansoku” is a riveting rock song by BUMP OF CHICKEN, an alternative rock band with a unique name and an equally unique sense of style. Its title translates to “Astronomical Observation” in English and fittingly, listening to it may result in a “Eureka” moment.

The song starts off with a bang, electric guitars, percussive drums, and riffing electronic synths permeating the track. The instrumental contrasts with the crooning voice of lead singer Motoo Fujiwara, before he escalates into a triumphant chorus that blends nostalgia and power. 

Evocative of a shonen anime opening, BUMP OF CHICKEN is a clear predecessor of popular JRock bands today such as RADWIMPS. It will surely have you and your group overcome with passion! 

9. Nana – Glamorous Sky

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“Glamorous Sky” begins with the low rumble of bass guitars and the fittingly glamorous voice of Nana. What follows is an emotional and raw performance that pulls at the heartstrings. As the singer mourns the loss of her lover, reminiscing on glorious days gone by, the song escalates to a true rock ballad full of feeling before ending with the echoes of the bass guitar from earlier. 

The song’s dramatic nature requires an over-the-top performance, so feel free to go crazy with it and show your friends a side you’ve never shown before! 

10. DOES – 曇天

“Donten” is a J-rock song by DOES, a three-piece Japanese rock band known for its iconic anime songs for animes such as Naruto and . Its title translates to the word “cloudy” but it is anything but soft. The most hardcore song on this list, “曇天” is the 5th anime opening for Gintama.

The electric guitars thunder through the instrumental like a storm as lead singer Ujihara Wataru’s vocals increase in intensity. This song promises three minutes and twenty-eight seconds of intense fun!

Check Out Karaoke EPOC

Check Out Karaoke EPOC

So what are you waiting for? It’s time to start your Karaoke adventure. Grab some Bubble tea at Kissaten upstairs with your friends and sing along at Karaoke EPOC for a fun night of JPOP.


About Aaron Ang

Aaron is a 20-year old college student who loves Pokemon, video games. and kpop (especially Twice and Loona!) He writes articles about East Asian culture and makes commentaries on pop culture. When not writing, he practices kpop dance routines or hangs out on Discord. His dream is to work at Disney or Nintendo one day!