Ladies, liberate your boobs. That's right, your restrictive bra can be set free, joining a family of it's brothers and sisters hanging from the ceiling of Islington's rock'n'roll empire, Slim Jim's. We're assuming it's an homage to insane fandom (a la Beatlemania) rather than the most bizarre decor choice of all time. Either way, this is but the tip of the iceberg of the Slim Jim's charm. Less than a 10-minute walk from Angel Station, you'll find the dimly lit liquor store reserved for nights of hard liquor, sexy rock music and good old fashioned head-banging.
Slim Jim's is gorgeous. Modest and strong with a traditional American vibe pouring from every corner. The venue has a side room to the immediate right of the entrance, where you can mingle with others at a distance from the roaring hub of music. There's also two seating booths which can be reserved with chalkboard style backrests scrawled in messages and doodles offering a playful element to the decoration. The rest of the seating is bar stools and standing area is minimal, creating quite an intimate feel. The walls are plastered with old posters, the likes of which cause nostalgia for your old bedroom caves, muddied with rockstars and subculture insignia. Because of Slim Jim's small size, it also means that when there's live music playing, you can be close enough to feel the vibrations from the guitar strings. The some 600 bras dangling overhead adding a really interesting flash of colour to the place. Dare we say, they actually look quite artistic. Although, that could just as easily have something to do with the warm buzz from the whiskey.
Music: Rock'n'Roll, Alt, Acoustic, Live, Folk, Indie
Dress Code: Casual
Train Station: Essex Road
Address: Slim Jims, 112 Upper Street, London, N1 1QN
Speaking of whiskey: many know Slim Jim's as the place for a delightful variety. The bar's back wall is in fact entirely covered with the stuff- Whisky from every sharp edge of the world. They offer all spirits as well as a large and ever-changing range of craft beers from local and far-flung breweries. A variety of classic cocktails as well as special creations are also on offer. Favourites of ours were the Dirty Mojito, packed with mint to pinch the back of your throat and the Dark'n'Stormy- the potency of the ginger forces the rum to unveil itself to the taste buds slowly. While you enjoy your drink of choice, you cannot help but be consumed by the music. With live music every Saturday, frequent and recurring visits from hard rocking DJs, and a public use jukebox, the sound of Slim Jim's is its best and most memorable feature. They also have weekly tribute nights to classic rock bands and legends such as Johnny Cash and the Ramones. The music spans the whole spectrum of rock and its sub-divisions so you're likely to leave with a new favourite to explore.
Everyone at Slims seem very liberal, and open, which we just loved. It also kinda means that if you find yourself pressed against a stranger with a neon Mohawk or a leather-clad foot-tapper, you're going to want to fit yourself right in there. Don't be shy now. A sign as you walk in the door states that no sports clothes and no suits should be worn, letting you know from the off that this place encourages scruffy and casual fashion, not to say that you can't look fab in your ripped jeans and oversized shirt. Confidence really is the key to enjoying yourself here. The staff are so chilled that you may mistake them for a customer who's snuck behind the bar. Those familiar with the place as well as the staff do a great job to make everyone feel welcome by simply keeping everything moving as smoothly as bold rock music allows.
If you're in the area and you have even a hint of anarchy in your veins, it would be a mistake to not check out this place. Don't forget to keep your mind open and your ears prepared for a lashing of guitar solos and motivating lyricism. And not just 'Woah-Oh, we're half way there', these guys are legit. Slim Jim's is open 'til late with free entry every day of the week so you've got no excuse to miss out on this venue. Plus, aside from the great selection of whiskey and variety of live music - it could also totally double as a clothes swap. See a bra you like? Shimmy out of your old one and pinch that lacy number hanging from the corner. Score. We're just kidding. Don't do that. It's art remember?