新宿3丁目駅の地下道 Underground paths at Shinjuku 3-chome Station

Shinjuku Station is connected to Shinjuku 3-chome Subway Station and Tochomae Subway Station via a number of subterranean paths (chikadō). These paths crisscross the Shinjuku Ward area, connecting the stations to not only each other, but also various department stores and office building complexes which extend beneath the ground to connect this subterranean world of pathways. During peak periods, the number of people pushing through these subterranean paths is immense, crowds of people jostling to connect to various lines of Tokyo's mass transit system.

In the recording, Thomas Baudinette walks through one of these subterranean passageways connecting Shinjuku 2-chome (and the Shinjuku 3-chome Tokyo Metro Shinjuku Line Station) to Shinjuku 3-chome (and the Shinjuku 3-chome Tokyo Metro Marunouchi Line Station). Upon reaching his destination, Thomas Baudinette encounters the entrance to one large department store (Bikkuro, an amalgamation of two popular retailers; UNIQLO and Bigg's Camera). From the entrance, recordings and music blast into the space. Interestingly (as Thomas clarifies in the recording), the announcements are in Korean and Chinese, injecting the sounds of a foreing language into the space.

Recording by Thomas Baudinette

Explore Sonic Japan

More in Shinjuku

More on public space

More on retail

Recent posts

Arashiyama Wedding

Mon Jul 24 2017 by Tamara Kohn

What a sight in the midst of the splendid bamboo forest walk at Arashiyama: A young couple posing for wedding photos in a stream of light on the wide path. The bride’s long white dress glowed with a brilliant light that appeared to emanate from the bodies of the...>>

Green Tea Cakes and Yobikomi

Fri Jul 21 2017 by Carolyn Stevens

In my recent article ‘Irasshai! Sonic Practice as Commercial Enterprise in Urban Japan’ (Journal of Musicological Research, link here, I observe that recorded versions of yobikomi (calling in customers) are increasing, likely due to cost cutting measure – it’s cheaper to record the company jingle and play it on...>>

Genkoan and the bloody footprints

Tue Jan 31 2017 by Tamara Kohn

This temple, founded in the 14th century, sits high in the hills in northwest Kyoto. Since the late 17th century it has belonged to the Sōtō School of Zen. It is famous for its main hall (hondo) where there are two windows – one perfectly round and another...>>

More posts >>

Places

More >>

Themes

More >>