Melbourne's karaoke scene has been slightly underwhelming since it lost the glorious pool-hall-slash-open-mic venue Charlton's last year.
But it's T-minus five weeks until Mike Patrick, Kent Bell and Alicia Cheong, the team behind Fancy Hank's, swing open the doors to their new four-storey party palace comprising a rooftop bar for 100, a flame-fuelled Singaporean diner and two floors of private karaoke rooms replete with Japanese hardware (the good stuff), Singaporean software (systems that let you add songs) and boxes of costumes.
Thematically, co-owner Mike Patrick says the look is going to be "explosive". Last year they filled an entire shipping container in Kuala Lumpur with taxidermy catfish, Whitney Houston LPs, tinsel and moulded fibreglass furniture in red, green and glittery black.
You might have tried some of the dishes destined for the bar-dining level at the team's Majestic Hawker pop-ups last year. Cheong will be cooking a bar food menu of stingray with sambal, lots of skewers and charcoal chicken wings while the likes of smoked brisket rubbed with Sichuan pepper will be prepped over at Fancy Hank's HQ.
Oscar Eastman, ex-Eau de Vie and Loretta's, has drafted a cocktail list designed for south-east Asian food, named for karaoke bangers, using mostly local spirits from Melbourne Moonshine and Starward Whisky, but also importing the likes of a Sichuan pepper gin from Paper Lantern in Singapore.
Heroes is due to open mid-May at 188 Bourke Street, Melbourne, heroesbar.com.au; Tue-Thu 4pm-1am; Fri, Sat noon-1am.