March 2009 Archives


Well ... what the f%*k do I know? Tonight's show at Yuyintang was going head to head with Battles at Dream Factory, essentially stripping it of hipsters and ex-pat party types. Then, on top of that, the night was marketed (to mainly local rock fans) as a silk stockings night. If the ladies wore a mini skirt and stockings, they get in half price. And the weather was miserable. Seemed like a perfect recipe for a dead night.

So yeah, I turned up near doors open time and had to queue to get in. It was already over 300 when I bought my ticket and ended up being absolutely rammed with overspill into the park, just like the Halloween Subs show. To top it off, there were wall to wall local indie and rock girls ...yes ... almost all wearing short skirts and stockings. As co-owner Zhang Haisheng said to me later on, never bet against the discount.

So, yeah, it was rammed and a great night. The main room was bursting and everyone got jumping about halfway into the set of Banana Monkey. Lead signer Bono was visibly dissapointed with the crowd at first and asked them to get jumping between each song. But to be fair, they still haven't found their mojo since reforming and the point at which the crowd got going was the point at which the songs were tighter and the performance better. By the last song I finally felt like I was at a BM show and the band went out in rock style, taking turns to throw down thier instruments and attack the drum kit.

Next up, the Mushrooms were the headlining act. And ... finally, the new line up has tightened up and settled in and the energy we were used to from the Mushrooms was back. What a good time for a return to form, in front of a packed room of adoring fans who knew the words to every song. Front man PuPu has never been short of charisma and with the new line up solid, it was back to his old self. I did want to get some footage, and Youtube is back but once in the mosh zone there was no chance to get out again. Great band, great night. Perhaps we could schedule a hipster friendly show on the same night as local rock shows all the time? It's win-win.

Rock never dies @ Yuyintang

| | Comments (4) | TrackBacks (0)
A rainy Friday night and I was back in action after a two week lay off. This was an 0093 event with the regular 0093 party coming up soon too. here was the line up:
Walking into Yuyintang I was surpirsed to see more major renovations. The band room has moved upstairs and the old band room is now more seating space. The two rooms are open to each other now and the whole area looks much bigger. Then the raised space behind the sound desk is opened for standing too with the glass having been taken out. Finally, the area on your left as you enter will now be a small shop for band merchandise. It all looks great.
Apart from generally hanging out I had an idea that I wanted to check on Hanging Gardens. The singer has the look and the band have some good ideas but they have yet to stake their claim on a piece of the scene. They were good tonight and the songs got across much better. Their main hit type song Memory Piece worked well, especially the extended instrumental break in the middle and I was taken away a bit. Fans of sensitive jangly indie bands should keep an eye on these guys.
Quick note: I have been waiting out this Youtube thing. It seems that it is coming back in fits and starts. If not I will deifinitely get a video up this weekend through Vimeo or Tudou.

Once more unto the breach ...

| | Comments (1) | TrackBacks (0)
racismRegular reviews resume tomorrow as i'm 99% over my recent bout with tonsillitis. But first I'm going to throw in another 'other' post on the Chinese blogosphere. Considering this is 99% a music blog, let's not have any more laughable claims that I post these to draw attention to my blog. If anything I'm alienating readers.

There's a debate going down over the picture that is displayed here. The debate was kicked off by a blogger pointing out the racism in this China net meme.

Original post:

Follow up by the same blogger:

C. Custer pointed out that this blatantly racist picture was on some major and respected China blogs without them passing comment on the racism. He then framed it as a discussion about racial awareness in China which touched the nerve, so to speak.

I would like to just go back to basics without making it China specific. The following applies to everyone.

The Africa line stops at the gorilla. The American one shows a dark monkey in clothes. This picture is disgusting in it's outright racism which goes beyond words and jokes and draws on the weight of our fucked up history. But what does it mean if anyone reposts it without framing it as racist? 

Yes, if you don't notice that racism or don't think it's a big deal then you basically agree with the sentiment, you don't see anything wrong with it. 

I think Custer made a mistake in framing it as 'about China' as these issues are global but at the same time was brave and exposed, for me, the fact that a lot of this stuff just gets explained away or ignored here by people who know better under the excuse of realpotik or being apolitical. Read the comments there.

This is most clearly shown by the initial replies by famed and oft quoted blogger Hecaitou, "but, black people do look like monkeys," whose various responses have shown him to be just plain racist. Non-racists with professional and personal relationships with Hecaitou need to be challenging him on this or at the very least registering their own feelings with him. Just like we all should to each other generally on clear cut cases like this meme.

And, no, it doesn't ingratiate you to anyone to refer to yourself as 'Laowai' either. Snap!

Midi rumours: if you can't beat 'em ...

| | Comments (0) | TrackBacks (0)
midi festival old promo
The Midi festival rumours are still flying around. Not 24 hours after an official release saying the Shanghai Midi is on there has been a new message tweeting about saying it's canceled again. This time because of 'permit issues'.

To catch up on the story read the Shanghaiist write up: here

Now we all know the ins and outs, the ups and downs of putting on big shows in China, and about the reliability of various groups too. So this is simply a case where the desire to microblog at the speed of light or be the first to break the inside track has overtaken the speed of real life. 

And ...despite saying that, i'm feeling lonely/left out so I'm now going to join in. Why not.

You see ... I have a source too! More than one in fact and sources who have also spoke to organizers on telephones. So lets stir the pot one more time:

a-p-p-a-r-e-n-t-l-y Midi officially sanctioned both the Shanghai and Zhenjiang shows separately without consulting either parties. The Shanghai festival was in fact good to go but then immediately found out that a bigger better one with access to the same acts was now scheduled close by on the same days. Then they canceled. The permit issue "reeks of BS", says my source.

So, if the Shanghai one doesn't happen and the Zhenjiang one goes ahead, and is confirmed by Midi school to be sanctioned by them. Then you know. But anyway, I still think a 'festival' in Redtown wouldn't be so good. It's too small and sanitized. There would be no festival atmosphere. It would just be about seeing the bands. I've seen up to 15 bands a month, including the cream of Beijing acts, without leaving my district except to go 8 or so bus stops to Dream Factory.
hard queen
Haven't done a magazine round up for a bit and want to start with a belated link to Jake Newby's Hard Queen article in That's Shanghai.

It's a full feature with some good backstory and you can read it online here:

Next up some material from Dan Shapiro over at City Weekend. First Dan reveals that there has in fact been an official release from the Beijing Midi Music School pertaining to the festival being held in Shanghai. Here are the two previous posts and here is Dan's blog:

Also, in the print edition Dan draws attention to four CD releases happening in April. We have Hard Queen, Hedgehog, Retros and The Gar. Let's throw some attention back at Dan too, the recent Rogue Transmission gig was kick-ass and they have a CD of their own you might want to inquire about.

I have been gearing up for the Hedgehog show by listening to tracks from their upcoming third CD, Blue Daydreaming. And you can too: right here.
This is another call to arms. 

All bands, shows and underground CDs deserve your support. But, every now and again there is an event which I believe is a potential turning point for the scene. This is only the second time I've done this and it must be stressed that there are no 'deals' with the bands/promoters and the giveaways are paid for in full, from my own pocket. This is me putting my money where my mouth is - figuratively and literally.

Hard Queen are one of Shanghai's great underground acts trying to do something different or personal. Here is their new site and you can listen to some tracks here.

Hard Queen have arrived at this day - their 4th April EP release - through many knocks. This included being famously fired from Windows Underground for being Chinese and also having to scrap eight months in the studio last year. All the time they seemed to receive little support from the scene in general who tended not to understand the music. 

However, with the help of producer/promoter Brad Ferguson, they went back to the ethic that Sheena started the band with - do it yourself and be true to yourself. Now the EP is ready. It has been done without a label or any kind of industry support and on a minimum personal budget. All the artwork, design and promotions have been done by friends of the band and the band themselves.

The EP is included in the price of entry on the night and there are T-shirts available too. So here's what I'm going to do - the first four commenters on this post who state they want one and provide a size will get a t-shirt on me. They will be able to collect it when they go to the show.

If this event is packed out and the merchandise is sold out - it sends a message that a local band with limited funds can make original music D.I.Y. style and succeed. So go. And tell everyone you know to go too. 

Underground folk shows in 0093

| | Comments (0) | TrackBacks (0)
0093 Studio is the premier rehearsal studio for local bands in Shanghai. It's affordable, has plenty of rooms (all equipped) and it also happens to be in an underground bomb shelter and look very rock.

I've been down there a bit lately, working on some songs and it really is one of the coolest places. I also intro'd a few people to the place after meeting via the blog. I was once down there with a certain retired rock singer and the first thing he blurted out when we saw a room was "Wow, they should put on shows here."

Fast forward a few weeks and I'm surprised to see that there will be a show there. They even have a separate logo O3空间 (on the right). It will be on Sunday 29th of this month and run from 2.00 in the afternoon. 

The music will be indie folk but I'm not sure about the artists. As well as Sylvia we have two acts named after dishes, Tomato & Egg and Glazed Char Siu respectively. Anyhow, it could be the start of something good so if you fancy sitting in a grungy underground room shooting the shit with local musicians then give it a go.

0093 is at 93 Lingling Road and the entrance is right by the Line 4 metro station Da Mu Qiao Lu.

Youtube channel roundup for March 2009

| | Comments (0) | TrackBacks (0)
It's that time of the month again. And it's time for the obligatory notice for newbies. Most of the live videos I post here are taken by myself and stored at the blog's Youtube Channel. You can see a link in the sidebar.

Or you can click here to visit.

So, we have a new number one, discounting my Sick Sunday parody vid which is at almost 2000 views. Hard Queen have just opened their new website in anticipation of the CD launch next month. They posted up some vids there and included one of mine. The new views have pushed them all the way.

Here we go then. if these are all old news to you, be sure to check my movers and shakers below that:

1) Hard Queen live @ YYT (August): 444 views watch
2) The Rogue Transmission live @ Dream Factory: 378 views watch
3) Bang Bang Tang live @ Yuyintang (Oct): 338 views watch
4) Bang Bang Tang (Lollipop) older vid: 324 views watch
5) Boys Climbing Ropes live @ Dream factory: 319 views watch
6) Bang Bang Tang live @ Yuyintang (Nov 2008): 299 views watch

Among hot new vids are Reflector @ YYT and Momo @ Gua'er

Sick again: some tunes and news

| | Comments (0) | TrackBacks (0)
AK47 tour
I'm proper sick. Boo hoo. It's tonsillitis and I can barely speak. Hey, stop cheering.

That means that this weekend is shaky for me and I'm not sure which gigs i'll make, let alone review. Check out the flyer there. Friday night at Yuyintang is the AK47 tour and CD release. 

Have a listen to their demos at Douban here.

Also, the Midi festival rumours are flying again. This time we have Shanghaiist linking They report that the festival will not be in Beijing at all ...wait for it ... but in Zhenjiang. That's a city on the banks of the Yangtze between Shanghai and Nanjing. Surreal. I'd take all these reports with a pinch of salt. By the way, you will never ever catch me trying to break these Midi stories or post them first or whatever. I agree with Dan.

Their source at Zhongguo Wang

Finally, have any clue what I'm listening to while sick at home? Care? No? Well, Hedgehog are coming back to Shanghai to promote their new CD Blue Daydreaming in early April. There is a preview track up at their Neocha page.

Cough, splutter, cough. Moan ...

Youtube: Red Banana live @ Yuyintang

| | Comments (7) | TrackBacks (0)
Hefei rockers Red Banana played Yuyintang on Friday night, opening with their track Hello. I managed to get a vid of the song. I'm also sick right now so that's all the write up my brain can manage. Enjoy.

Further Update: Salil in the comments has pushed me about specifics on BP so here is a clarification. BP is a nasty company and their rebranding by Ogilvy PR is greenwash, and they were involved in Nigerian abuses.

However, the company directly implicated in the arms scandal were Shell. Shell appear on Edelman's site, not Ogilvys.

Update:  "T" says in the comments: 
"I'm actually only a former PR company employee, and not nearly one as accomplished of as Messers Imagethief and Kuo above, however, 100% of the work I did, oversaw and even saw/heard about in the almost 2 years I was in the business was about trying to get people - whether consumers or other businesses - to buy services or products."

Same issue of trust, be it 'crisis control' or Greenwashing ... or trying to sell us stuff.

Original post:

Among the most read 'experts' in the China English language blogosphere is journalist Thomas Crampton. And his latest post is announcing that he will join PR firm Ogilvy which also happens to be the home of another oft quoted blogger Kaiser Kuo.

The way in which they are linked and quoted without qualifying statements makes me wonder if half the people out there getting excited over them know exactly what an international corporate and governmental PR firm actually does?

Two helpful words: spin, evil.

Oglivy PR have many case studies and clients for browsing at their flashy website. It's all there in public. How about the rebranding of British Petroleum as a green friendly company? Yes, the oil company. Yes, the same one that responded to international actions against Nigeria military dictatorship following the hanging of Ken Saro Wiwa by gifting them arms sales. That's called greenwash. What about their work with drug giant Pfizer and their work against HIV. Is that Pfizer who, along with others, tried to sue the government of South Africa when they tried to buy affordable medicine for poor AIDS sufferers? Pfizer one of many companies whose cynical policies hold the sick to ransom for modern drugs that should be easily affordable while getting all their r&d paid for by the state?

These people are not grassroots sources or trustable experts - they work in international PR and what's worse - their focus is how to manipulate social media. They may occasional have insights or something worthwhile to report, sure, but let's please keep it in perspective.
The Return of Rogue Transmission
It seems that a lot of Shanghai bands are getting what they deserve lately. The Rogue Transmission have had a small break during which they lost a guitarist, replaced him and wrote new material. Tonight was the return, Jedi style (check the flyer). Here was the original line up:

The Dropkicks
Monroe Stahr

I'd seen Monroe Stahr briefly on Thursday night and was impressed with the catchy songs and style. They were added to the bill late only to cancel on the night due to illness. Pity that, as there was a great turn out and singer/songwriter Nicky was keen to play to a regular weekend night crowd.

The Dropkicks went on early and proceeded to play for almost one hour, which I personally feel is a faux pas for a support act in a smaller club gig. They played well enough although the sound over the PA was middling. Then, there was a huge break between them and the band everyone was waiting for. But when Dan Shapiro took the stage it was all worth the wait.

I was worried by the high percentage of party scene ex-pats in the crowd and there were bad shirts and shiny bags everywhere. Luckily there were some cheeky instigators at the front, including yours truly, who were determined to get some action. Rogue Transmission returned tighter, louder and improved. The sound was clear and the material rocked. With a case of the flu creeping in, I had to retire from the front four songs in but it was worth it. Chalk up one more Shanghai band who can headline a Saturday night and rock it.

Red Banana live @ Yuyintang

| | Comments (1) | TrackBacks (0)
new sign at yuyintang
As recently reported, Hefei based rockers Red Banana came to Shanghai last night. Here was the full line up:

The Snot Rockets

I have to admit straight off the bat that I was barely conscious at this gig. I worked all day right up until 8.30 then got there at 9.15. By the time Red Banana went into their set I was lost-in-the-desert hungry and starting to flip out.

Every time I see Loudspeaker they seem to get heavier. They are a skatepunk band who play fast and simple tunes with leanings towards hardcore punk. They were on stage as I entered the venue and it sounded like a metal gig. It didn't help that the sound was muddy over the PA.

The Snot Rockets were next and this was the first time I'd given them a proper listen. They have capable players in the line up, including Mizusu from Banana Monkey. They play garage rock-ish material a la Libertines and all wear shirts and ties on stage. It's a hipster's wet dream. I like t-shirt rock myself but with the talent in the band something is definitely going to come out of the project if they keep it up and make it a priority.

Lastly, Red Banana got on and the sound quality jumped up another level (equipment, not the players). They opened with the signature track Hello and played a solid set. I'd love to write more but I was drifting by three songs in due to hunger and had to bail. They are tight performers with great hooks in the songs. I got the CD and it's worth it. See ya'll at The Return of the Rogue Transmission tonight!

My Interview at China Travel

| | Comments (1) | TrackBacks (0)
me doing kung fu training
Ah, the ups and downs of blog stardom. Blog stardom is perhaps somewhere between B-list stardom and reality TV (in terms of respect). Anyhow, I get a bit of it behind the scenes and lately I decided to agree to some.

So, I have an interview up at China Travel Net. It's mainly about China and Kung Fu, but its a little bit funny too. Well, I like to think so. 

And here's a quote:

And speaking of kung fu comedy: Kung Fu Panda. Thumbs up or thumbs down?

Thumbs down. One big long sentimental stereotype. Just like what Disney does to traditional world stories. Disneyland should be carpet bombed with the worst kind of banned weapons mankind has to offer. Then we have to find Walt's cryogenically frozen head and thaw it.

Red Banana and other stuff

| | Comments (0) | TrackBacks (0)
red banana
Big weekend coming up at YYT. The Rogue Transmission returns on Saturday night, which should be a good party night, but the Friday gig has not really been promoted much so I did a bit of snooping.

Musically, this has the potential to be another nuts show like Reflector, although I'm not sure Red Banana has the same fan base. Red Banana are from Hefei, the capital of Anhui province. They play pop-punk as well as listing brit-pop among their influences. I went to their Douban page and found they have ten full tracks there for listening starting with the excellent Hello.

So go to the show on Friday and we can make it like this. Don't worry if you can't read Chinese, scroll down and you'll see the MP3 player. If you ever go to my China links and see a bunch of code, just pop in your system disc and install Simplified Chinese into your net browser, then all will be revealed.

On another note, you may have noticed that I took out the recent comments sidebar a while back. This was because it showed up spam before I could add it into my list and annoyed me greatly. However, this means that if you comment on older posts, like more than six back and off the front page, I'm not likely to notice. By the way, this site's archives are in a title only list format and very easy to troll through.

So, while trolling through older posts recently I found a bunch of comments I'd never seen. These included a long answer from Cold Fairlyland's Lin Di on the Melting Pot post and a comment from the film makers about Chinese Rock'n'roll!!!

So here's the etiquette. If a post is not very active then people won't go back to it once it's off the front page. On a blog that posts often you just comment on the latest post and make an anchored link (no full addies please) or a brief reference to what you're talking about. So there you go. If you check any of those two links, for example, and want to comment on them ... use this post. Ok.

Midi Festival rumours and a video

| | Comments (2) | TrackBacks (0)
by Wee Ling
There's currently a bunch of info flying around about the Midi Festival that includes a possible date in Shanghai. Some of it is public and some of it is private (sorry, can't publish that).

First of all, for non-China readers: Midi is a music college in Beijing. They started a festival and put it on in their own campus. Then it grew and grew and moved into Beijing's Haidan Park, eventually looking like a real festival with international acts and multiple stages. Alas, it came a cropper of the Ol*mp*cs and tried to reschedule into a different holiday, clashing with the Modern Sky festival.

Before I link up the rumours, better point out that previous attempts at a 'Shanghai Midi' were just local promoters bringing the bands down who were also playing Midi before it was canceled. New rumours talk about people directly involved in the Beijing Midi - starting with the fact that they are having difficulty getting permission for this year.

So first of all we have the post at China Music Radar saying it will definitely happen in Shanghai Sculpture Space (Redtown) on May 1st & 2nd.

Then we have the Jake Newby (pictured with me) write up for Shanghaiist which is a bit more skeptical.

Personally I'm with the skeptical side ... read the blurb, multiple stages at Redtown? Has anyone reading this actually stepped onto the lawn there recently? I have, I lived opposite for 18 months. Multiple stages and big festival stuff? I don't think so. If it does happen there, it will be minimal. Well, lets wait and see. I leave you with Subs footage from a previous Midi. It's rough as fuck buts that's the best way to hear the Subs.

I wasn't planning on posting a video from last night as we already have the excellent Reflector clip. And ... before we go on, this video is a bit of a piss-take by the band. Tianpin Dian are really good and usually have two vocalists with MC YKE being accompanied by Melody Li - hence their inclusion on a female singers night.

So for their main stuff you could listen to their demo or watch the same track live.

People in Shanghai have Shanghainese as their first language and Mandarin second. People I know tend to associate using Shanghainese with humour, cursing and kicking back. Maybe it's because the standard Mandarin is associated with school, the gov and bland 'ol TV. Whatever the reason, when local bands break out the Sang-hei-e-wu the gloves come off and the air turns blue. Even Momo did it last night, telling a joke in a break where the punchline was old women doing a folk dance while saying 'everyone rub your balls'. 

As soon as I realised what was going on, I had to get out the camera. Melody Li joined the audience, the band swapped instruments and out came the filthiest joke version of jingle bells you have ever heard.

0093 Women's Day party @ Yuyintang

| | Comments (0) | TrackBacks (0)
momo three eight
March 3rd is International Women's Day and it was a perfect occasion for 0093 Studios to put on their second all female singers night at Yuyintang.

Here was the line up:

Black Luna
Candy Shop (Tianpin Dian)
Bang Bang Tang
Hotter Than Teppenyaki
The Dovetail Joints

I was especially interested to see Momo, Tianpin Dian and Bang Bang Tang as all three have had a bit of a lay of from gigging lately to work on their new material. Click on the names for their music.

Great turn out at Yuyintang. Tianpin Dian's sound could have been a bit louder but it was a welcome return and an energetic performance. The highlight was definitely singer Melody Li. She now has a greater confidence and personality on stage which in turn has opened up her voice. The crowd really liked her. They got an encore for which the band switched instruments and YKE performed his filthy bonus track Ding Ding Dong.

Momo continued with their new found professionalism. Since signing with Indietop and recording new, more layered, material they go to great lengths to reproduce it on stage. CC was tight on the drums, using a click via headphones, and they have Jerry Li Xing playing third guitar riffs and setting off samples and effects from a lap top. Their songs sounded great and their blend of wall-of-sound indie and cutesy pop pleased everyone.

Bang Bang Tang sounded dressed sown in comparison but they are driven by Xiao Bai's great voice. They opted to play more fast songs tonight, recent sets have been almost all indie-folk in style. They closed the set with a couple of crowd pleasing covers and I didn't hear any new material. As usual, Xiao Bai was the focus of the set and the audience seemed happy to bask in her talent.

March madness continues and I've seen April's schedule with is even crazier.

Youtube: Reflector raise the roof

| | Comments (2) | TrackBacks (0)
Note: the video starts a bit dark and shaky but it clears up and lights up around 58 seconds in. Stick with it.

This is possibly the best video on the channel so far. Not a surprise as it came from one of the most insane shows Yuyintang has ever hosted. This was the place to be across this packed weekend of various shows.

Somehow I managed to whip the camera out and shoot mid near death experience insane action and get a whole song and shots of the audience. So check it out.

Reflector blow the roof off Yuyintang

| | Comments (0) | TrackBacks (0)
reflector flyer
This show is going to take some beating this year. Beijing punksters Reflector were in town tonight in what would turn out to be an utter riot. Here was the line up:

Dragon Pizza

So, first of all, go to Reflector's page which has six high quality tracks on it. Listen here at Myspace.

Reflector have been around a while and have a good following. As first act Pinkberry started to come on stage, the main room was already rammed with fans eager to rip things up. The sound was on the money all night, right from the start.

I have to say, I'm so glad this day came as Pinkberry were a 'pick' of mine from the start of the blog. They took the stage, ripped into the first track and it was mosh from the get go. Finally band played to a packed, nuts room. Well deserved. Next up, Dragon Pizza kept things going with a heavier set of metal. The style was out of place next to the other two pop-punk acts but the people just wanted to keep at it. Finally, Reflector took the stage and it went insane. We are only on the 8th day of March Madness but I think I saw the best show already.

And if you think this is all empty gushing, watch the video that I'm posting after this.

Bits and bobs (March 09)

| | Comments (2) | TrackBacks (0)
This quickie post is built around some main news. Please appreciate that I can only talk around it. So, let's begin.

For a certain reason, Youtube has gone all screwy. Well, it's largely just gone here. It's probably related to the same reason it went last time. Humorously, it has gone with extreme incompetence and is showing up now and again in certain servers. Anyway - here's the point: it fucks with my blog! 

If it looks like a month or more's worth of no access I'll host the newer vids on a China based site. 

In the meantime, since we're here at my blog, there are two demo versions from the upcoming Hard Queen CD here:

And. This Sunday's female singers show at Yuyintang happens to be on, and for, International Women's Day. So go.

Pictured: talking of women, it's Kang Mao singing for The Subs at Yugong Yishan in Beijing. A true inspiration.

Sucker live @ Yuyintang

| | Comments (1) | TrackBacks (0)
Xi'an band Sucker have an interesting acronym. Sunshine in USA California: keep my eager heart to Rancid!!! Yes, with all three exclamation marks on the poster. So, basically they are a Rancid tribute band with original material. Which is fine by me. However, tonight was the night where the Shanghai bands on the bill represented.

First check out Sucker's Myspace page

And here was the line up:

Sucker (Xi'an)
The Dropkicks

Great atmosphere in Yuyintang. The lights were down and punk played on the PA as the room gradually filled leading up to the first band. A fourth band were added last minute and they played four quick covers by the likes of Blink 182. They did a good job and the night was off.

Pinkberry took the stage and played a great set. They started off with new tracks Wish and Pinkberry Song and the sound was better than usual. The hooks all came through and the band played a tight set, the result being a good reception from the crowd. According to the YYT schedule, Pinkberry play again supporting Reflector on Saturday night. Next up were The Dropkicks who also ripped into the best sounding set I've heard them play. They play classic rock of the Gibson into Marshall variety and were tight, even using a written set list to get through their show without long pauses or drops in energy. Other bands take note, one act I saw a couple of weeks back stopped the intro to their first track for the drummer to check then reply to a text message. Anyway, Shanghai bands really came through tonight. 

Sucker launched into their energetic Rancid clone show, which pleased fans of Rancid. That includes me. You all may remember another band with the same M.O. from Nanjing called Old Doll. Read about their Shanghai show here. I think Old Doll edge it in the battle of the bay area tributes. See you at the weekend.

Hard Queen site goes live

| | Comments (0) | TrackBacks (0)
The return of Hard Queen is almost upon us. Hard Queen are one of Shanghai's most original bands with a dressed down alt-pop sound that stands out from the rock crowd. 

Why not start by checking out their show at Eno for Popil's art show. Watch the video.

Hard Queen had developed a great set of new material and played a string of shows that ended in the now legendary Windows Underground last show where the boss banned Brad Ferguson from hiring Chinese bands and Hard Queen trashed the kit and denounced the management to the punters. The band then went into the studio but couldn't agree with the producer and months went by with no results.

So, Brad came to the rescue as the new producer and now we finally have a release date. The new website is now live here and you'll note that the CD will be released at Yuyintang on the 4th April. You pay the usual 30 rmb cover then get the CD included. Good news to international fans of the band Brad is making the CD available on Itunes a little after the release. The CD can also be physically bought overseas through Just one month to go.
In January 2009 Splitworks put on the Jue Festival. It was an urban festival of art and music held across many venues in Beijing and Shanghai. It ruled and mastermind Archie Hamilton put on two excellent indie rock shows at the Dream Factory. They were Demerit and the Maybe Mars Showcase.

Now Spilt have put up a video looking back at the highlights. Archie really went beyond the commercial promoter role here to put on something diverse and meaningful. That's not surprising to people who know him as he really cares about music. Enjoy.

jim groom
Jim Groom is a legend in the blogging and ed-tech worlds. He is a champion of shared and open source technology and his stand against Blackboard led to his eventual coining of the term Edupunk.

His Bava Tuesdays blog is amazing and it covers a wide range of topics, including some of the greatest movies ever. This quote is from his latest post about 'online branding'.

Jim sez:

If we are using the term online branding to frame our conversations about institutions, personal blogs, or digital identities, then the apotheosis of people as product has been realized, and we might as well tattoo a bar code on our necks and get scan-inventoried at the local Wal-Mart.

Read the amazing full post here:

About this Archive

This page is an archive of entries from March 2009 listed from newest to oldest.

February 2009 is the previous archive.

April 2009 is the next archive.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.