shanghai music scene: February 2010 Archives
I find the new year here to be boring. There's no real, decent festival action, traditional kung fu, temple fairs or anything like that. You'd have to be in the exclaves for that. Anyway, I'm bored.
Enter an e-mail, from a newly arrived blog fan looking for noise gigs. I direct him to the Torturing Nurse page and the info for the next NoiShanghai meet. I check the page and think it would make a good post to show some of their highly entertaining live show gallery.
Then I find the real gem. The vids there are mainly recent but right at the back is a classic 2008 gig featuring, in my mind, the classic line up when Jia Die gave them the extra visual/psychological dimension. It's the one with the hot wax SM and the primal screaming.
Really, never mind the obvious stuff like the candle lit SM/nudity (ruined mainly by the flash photographers who would blatantly wet their pants if they saw merely an ankle anyway) - the real high point of this performance is three or so minutes in when Junky smashes the guitar and they go into sustained primal screaming.
In a few hours we'll have the Year of the Tiger. Last night we went to the Yuyintang New Year show, that's the flyer, and here's what Jake wrote about it:
While there we found out that Top Floor Circus were supposed to play, but the man has extended their ban until ... the end of the Expo. Here's the latest of three posts on that story, which links the others:
Finally, the Year of the Tiger is a perfect metaphor for the whole situation with biodiversity and the environment. Culture is full of sayings and symbols featuring animals, especially animals like the Tiger and no one likes to overuse them more than leaders and nationalists. In reality though, animals are sh*t on and these people do next to nothing to halt the assault on the environment.
Tigers are 99% on to not be here for the next Year of the Tiger, there are less in the wild than in captivity:
I recently posted about the rise of indie-folk artists on the pages of Douban. You can read that here. I featured an artist called Zhang Qianqian.
She has been on the TV in a documentary that features two intercut stories. One person comes to Shanghai from the west of China, the other goes back to Qinghai. That second person is Zhang Qianqian, who popped back to her home area to shoot a music video.
It's all subtitled in English and her MV is shown in full right upfront from just before the three minute mark.
The Mushrooms are the most popular home grown rock band in Shanghai. We recently saw them headline at Yuyintang on New Year's Eve, a show that got so packed that there was an inevitable visit from the rozzers.
Well, it's time for round two. It's now the lunar new year and The Mushrooms will headline YYT again. Also featuring on the bill are DCW, Momo and Little Nature.
It's on the Friday (12th).
The Mushrooms also cropped up in the Shanghai Daily lately, although in a generic and suspiciously out of date article. Despite it's publishing date being Jan 29th of this year, it talks about one of the guitarists having just joined the band. A year ago now.
I feel weird linking any of those papers. Their writing on the subject of culture is inconsequential. They spend more time committing things to the memory hole than reporting. We can always play a game of guessing why they chose to recycle this now. Slow day at the office?
Who cares. Go to the show.
Huanyin, Andybest. Indeed.
So. Poor Jake has no life right now for various reasons and I'm going to start up some extra posts like I used to do. This is the reporting on other music writing around the Shanghai scene blogs type thing.
Firstly Douban. We've been talking a lot about Douban lately and how it's like Facebook or Kaixin but with no annoying apps and has feeds for your bands and books and movies etc.
So logged in just now to see it has adopted a Facebook style combined feed frontpage. That's it on the picture. It's good. It will always be good because all the items are related to music, bands, books and films. They have added something new though, a kind of status update like on regular social sites. The new look is fine - but I hope it's not a precursor to it adding
happy lobotomy Happy Farm games and stuff like that.
Dan Shapiro is still flying the flag at City Weekend, trying to keep some kind of interest going there. Lately on his blog we've had an informative post on the city's recording studios, a review of the BCR CD and a preview of the upcoming Jue Festival.
Zack Smith is still plugging away in a lonely room at Layabozi. Lately he's written something about us, thanks. Check his weekend picks too.
China Music Radar are still wound up about festival organizers just plain lying about their line ups at official press conferences. I would be too, read it, it's outrageous. Now the CMR people are aware of this they find it happening all over the shop. Check out the latest installment.
Main Photo: Sammy Sheng of Candy Shop poses for PETA's 81fur.com. Shot by Tim Franco. Studio provided by Splitworks.
Not that long ago I wrote this post and briefly mentioned some photos we shot for a project supporting PETA's China website. I also mentioned that Jake was writing it up for Time Out.
So. It's mainly for Chinese language mags and sites but we are holding off to avoid the wrong type of attention to the show, which hasn't happened yet. Believe me, if we didn't have a strategy of gradual roll-out, I'd have been talking about nothing else on the blog.
Well, the Time Out feature is now public. Also, a friend of mine based in New York, Mickey Z, wanted to write this up and submit it to some editors he writes for. He shot high first and went for broke. It paid off and Discovery Channel have run it on their Planet Green website. Check it out.
They will also send a China based writer to cover the show at Yuyintang later this month. But for now - please tweet/link/repost/write the sh*t out of that link. Like now. Do it. This is Discovery Channel's site reporting on going's on at Yuyintang and linking local bands.
More photos after the jump.
Finally got my Friday footage uploaded. This is from the Playful Warrior show at Yuyintang.
So. Fans of proper heavy music rejoice. OK, the quality is not so good. But, stick with it as it goes through to a second song. I was taken with their new grind sections with slow but punishing beats and a guitar that sounds like it's tuned right down ... right down to hell.
Sorry. When I get into metal, all writing bets are off and out comes the cheese and cliche. By the way, death to false metal, satan's minions await you.