The Feedback Lounge in West Seattle: Whammy Bar
You may be aware that the Feedback Lounge is rock-and-roll themed, but you cannot grasp the extent of it until you behold the Rok Box. The Rok Box is a large, built-in display case for collections of rock-and-roll material on loan from various obsessed individuals and institutions. Currently, it contains the world's largest private collection (one hopes) of KISS merchandise. There is a KISS Christmas ornament, an oversize KISS alarm clock (the analog kind with two bells on top), a set of KISS latex masks, a set of KISS pint glasses, a bottle of KISS This wine, a mysterious boxed set of I-don't-want-to-know entitled KISS Him, a KISS key fob, the game KISSopoly, and—among many, many other things—a Tooth Tunes "Rock 'n' Roll All Nite" toothbrush, with two minutes of music for your mouth.
The Feedback Lounge is new, in a deep part of West Seattle known to real-estate agents as Morgan Junction, and must inescapably be compared to the Hard Rock Cafe. The walls hold framed concert posters, and gold and platinum records, and the Feedback Lounge's own T-shirts (for sale). In the front room, opposite the bar, an assemblage artwork includes a real amplifier and guitar that both have been semi-exploded (by rock and roll!), as well as two sunlike shapes with the rays composed of real drumsticks. In the back room is the Whammy Bar, a smaller bar not currently in use, with billions of concert ticket stubs and backstage passes under its glass top (Ted Nugent '81, Counting Crows '09, the Rolling Stones at the Seattle Coliseum '74). Bar stools feature the Ramones, Iron Maiden, and Slayer. Included in the Whammy Bar's guitars-of-unusual-shapes wall display: a shark-shaped guitar, a scorpion, a machine gun, an owl.
Everyone ignores the Tune-o-Matic Library (the owners of the Feedback Lounge like to name things), which is just a few shelves of rock-and-roll literature. The copy of Alice Cooper, Golf Monster (by Cooper with the assistance of—truly—twin ghostwriters Keith and Kent Zimmerman) appears never to have been read. Alice Cooper wears regular clothes, like polo shirts, when he plays golf: What a letdown.
The food, if not inspired (by rock and roll!), is entirely edible: eerily greaseless house-made tortilla chips ($5), a decent Whammy Burger (mushrooms, Swiss, sautéed onions, $9). A Cobb salad ($9), fresh but not too flavorful, is accompanied by the following menu verbiage (the owners also like menu verbiage): "A rich man's lawn doesn't taste better than this." This, I would imagine, is true.
The liquor control board has yet to grant a permit for the Sunndeck (named after Sunn amplifiers, overlooking the rear parking lot). And—for the time being—because they lack the required sprinkler system, there is no live music at the Feedback.