July 2009 Archives

Pepsi comp blog ... oh dear.

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So, there is an English blog at the site for the Pepsi contest. And for some reason it has decided to accuse me of jumping on a bandwagon.

It is written by an anonymous writer and extensively quotes Abe Deyo, who is apparently a stage manager on the show now. The writer may or may not be either Jay or X from the about page, I suppose.

No quotes from Abe or the mystery blogger about a certain incident that is missing from the blog ... but not missing from CMR here.

So here's the quote that links my post:

So a couple of "prominent scene figures" organized a boycott, and a lot of bands dropped out and started talking smack online. A few English language bloggers chimed in, jumping on the indie integrity bandwagon and charging that Pepsi doesn't respect rock.
The link was originally on 'chimed in' to the post I linked at the top here. What can I say ... jumping on a bandwagon. People who know me and who follow the blogging world a bit more closely know that I posted my thoughts on the thing right at the beginning before anyone else who would later get involved.

It's the first comment, the one where I say fuck you Pepsi co. What the bands who joined or not had to say later is their own thing. Jumping on a bandwagon implies changing my mind to be 'in' with a certain group. It is simply not the case, I have thought and stated that the show is balls right from the start and have consistently followed through with that sentiment.

So check your facts before linking me along with a baseless insult and add your real name. As Abe implies in his quotes, the show is what it is and it's always been clear to see. So the blogger there needn't attack my integrity while writing for a Pepsi sponsored pop show's blog. And what's more, if the upshot of this is that people who work directly for Pepsi read this post then might I add that you market junk food to kids ... how do you fucking sleep at night, assholes?

Can I add ... WTF ... this whole thing had been put to bed. The mini controversy was all over, no one was posting about it any more and the show was going on doing its thing. Why bring this up now? Is it one of those marketing ploys or something?

One more for the road

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Just a quickie to say that even though I am out of the game ...

... the adventure continues at Jake Newby's new blog, which is basically the same as mine was but better written. get on that immediately.


Uh-oh ....

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by Wee LingI'll get right to the point. Due to constant aggravation of a long standing health problem I have to bite the bullet and cut out all non essential computer use for at least three months.

So it's bye bye blog for the immediate future and ... perhaps for longer.

The site mail will still be active for anyone who wants to get in touch and tour the scene or go to a gig or get advice ... or whatever.




Andy B.

The Mushrooms at it again

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mushrooms party three flyer
There are all kinds of good shows coming up this month at Yuyintang and we even have Guaili coming down from Beijing. But something else is catching my eye and not for the reason you may think.

Singer Pupu of The Mushrooms decided to take matters into his own hands a couple of months ago and do promotions to get people into his shows. It started of as a bit of an ironic laugh but was an immediate success. I was sceptical but the highlight of the shows turned out not to be the whole ladies night/dress up idea (thankfully) ... it was the bands.

What happened was that The Mushrooms, who are excellent live performers, got a full house to play to and it all kicked off like it should every time they play. 

Scroll through this gallery to see how nuts the show was.

They shouldn't need to keep on with the promotions thing, in theory. It should be enough now that we have a band who can put on a show like the fabled gigs by better Beijing bands. Anyway, I'm blogging this because this will be the gig for action this month ..and by that I mean of the crowd surfing type. Also, there are five bands on the bill this time which will suit the late arriving crowd as The Mushrooms will be on later than usual.

New Momo demos out on Douban

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ding jia somalive
Before I write this I should make something very clear:

I like Momo and fans of indie pop/cutesy should catch their show which is excellent. 

Despite the big change of direction with Soma, I followed them since they were the Happy Strings and they put on a very professional live show these days. Not my usual music taste but in the old days they were very DIY and an integral part of the struggling scene so I'm happy to support.

So first the point of the post: 

There are two new demo tracks up at their Douban page. That'll be the two at the bottom of the player marked demo.

While we're at it why not see a recent video of them performing one of those tracks:

Or look back at their Soma debut as Momo. Or check out their Gua'er mini show. Or read a feature on Shanghai girls in rock by Jake Newby that includes singer Ding Jia.

Alas, one of the two demos has disappointed me a bit. At a recent show Momo played two of their older tracks and they rocked. It was a reminder of something. In the Happy Strings days I was always impressed by Ding Jia's voice. During the chorus of Start you could hear depth and colour in the singing. If only we could have Momo's original style but with the new professionalism live. When you listen to the vocals at the start of the new demo of Qingtian Wawa 晴天娃娃 the producer has destroyed her voice and turned it into a helium cartoon voice. 

Momo are now a band with experience, style and a good live show. I hope the producers can keep their soul too.

Indiechina showcase @ Yuyintang

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July the 4th. One of the most high profile sick-inducing nationalist events in the world but luckily I managed to find a place where it was not mentioned even once by venue, staff, patrons or bands. Hooray. 

So tonight was an intriguing showcase night hosted by the website indiechina.com. I was quite confused at first as it features post-rock and experimental acts and we had that excellent Miniless showcase just a few days back. The main local bands on the bill played the previous show and the whole thing seemed like a cut-price repeat of the Miniless gig ... except it was 50 RMB to get in. 

The main attractions for the night were going to  be a first proper full set from Triple Smash (not on the flyer there) and the chance to check out the Australian carnival tunes/alternative rock act Grace Before Meals.

I turned up as early as I could with my evil late schedule and couldn't see Boojii or Duck Fight Goose. I was, however, in time to see Triple Smash. Guitarist Jerry Li Xing leads the band and the tracks are all instrumental. Although they bill themselves as post-rock the music is a familiar blend of Li Xing's modern rock style that he first showcased with The Crazy Mushroom Brigade. They played a tight set but without any kind of significant atmospherics it comes across like rock without the singer. The bottom line is that anything Li Xing does has a  guarantee of quality and the crowd liked them a lot.

A great feature of the night was the use of Tian Shan Park out back of the venue, which they have now supplemented with a BBQ guy and seating. We chose to sprawl out on the grass and mosey on in to check out Grace Before Meals. Grace Before Meals are a surreal act who took a few songs to get going, mainly due to the average-indifferent sound that plagued the whole night. Not my thing but readers could follow the link and listen for themselves. 

New Faces night @ Yuyintang (July 1st)

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newfaces poster
It's the first day of July and I see that in the U.K. people are already going into panic mode about the temperature going over 30 degrees. 

Well, we get closures and safety measures here too ... when it hits 40 :( I've always found it intriguing that during heat waves the official temp reading never quite gets over 39.8. Hmmnnn.

So, New Faces night. This is a midweek night with no cover charge where completely new and inexperienced bands are encouraged to play. The idea is to give them some experience and encourage them to join the scene proper. 

Tonight there were three bands playing:

Pao (Cannon)

All three played fairly random sets of covers of varying quality. K.E. played pretty tight and their singer really went for it. She especially did well with the rap-rock nu-metal stuff. Pao seemed intent on showing off their fast guitar playing but were very under rehearsed. Subway played J-rock covers. 

The night was definitely worthwhile for the bands and is a good idea. However, I'm always disappointed when new bands play random covers. The size of the scene here, and the community feel, gives us all unique opportunities to write music, be creative and share. No levels or cliques or whatever, you can just do it. Talking to a few people in the venue I found that many members of the bands had not been down to YYT for the better bands' shows when it was busy too. 

Perhaps it means there is a whole group of bands who would be transformed by seeing a show like this and would then join the ranks and boost the scene proper.

About this Archive

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

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