Results tagged “0093” from Jake Newby

The Mushrooms for Meters Bonwe

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It's been a while since we heard anything from The Mushrooms - they went and got signed and haven't really done much since, which unfortunately seems to be something of a pattern for the band: they get a break, then go quiet for ages. But now they've popped up flogging Meters Bonwe's range of jeans. There's lots of gratuitous shots of their trousers obviously, but stick with it for the band talking about their city and their influences as well as footage of 0093 and Yuyintang. The band are on a few festival line-ups in the next couple of months and let's hope the tune sound-tracking this video is evidence that a record is finally on the way....

Read: 2010 in reviewness

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2010.jpgSo happy new year then, hope you had a good festive period and all that. Before we head into 2011 - the first few months of which could be a bit quiet with Yuyintang closing after this weekend and MAO Livehouse closing at the end of the month - here's a quick look back at 2010 courtesy of other people.




Plus, in case you missed it, check out this massive piece of good news on China Music Radar. Congratulations and well done to everyone involved.

UPDATE: Rock in China and Wooozy have self-promoted their own wraps ups in the comments below...

0093's 3 year anniversary at YYT

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e262057.jpgYou know 0093, now no longer at 0093, but still supporting the scene and doing what they were doing before - it's been written about plenty on here and on Andy's blog. Last night and Thursday night was their third anniversary and they celebrated with two back to back shows at Yuyintang with a shitload of bands playing across the two nights. I didn't make it to the Thursday show, but I did go last night. The turn out was good and so was the atmosphere.

The problem with having so many bands play is that you have to rattle through them pretty quickly. Some of the earlier bands did four or five songs, but some of the later ones, wary of the time, could only do three. That was a shame, because to my mind the later bands were the better ones.

To be honest, I spent the first half of the night by the bar or out in the garden talking to people and catching up and just generally getting some semblance of a life back after a crazy few weeks at work. It was good. The bands I half heard from that position were Five Pence (Guns 'n' Roses covers and stuff) and Five Pointed Star (energetic shouty stuff).

I forget the order, but the next three bands were New Vector, Momo and Little Nature. I think. New Vector were good, but only played three songs. As mentioned before, I'm a philistine and therefore three songs is not a bad cut off for most post rock bands in my book. I enjoyed their set. Momo were scuppered a bit by missing Ding Jia, their singer. Little Nature opened with a song that had us wondering if it was actually Little Nature - they sounded energetic and good. But then we realised it actually was Little Nature and I couldn't really be arsed to go inside.

Eventually I did go in and watch a band properly though: Runaway Snail. Fanqie has changed his look once again so I barely recognised him when I bumped into him earlier in the night, but once up on stage he was his normal self and the band gave a strong performance. I just wish they'd play more songs and play more often, they're really good. Then Joker finished things off and were brilliant as well. They're another band that I'm a big fan of and never disappoint live. Can't wait to here their new album, hopefully out next month.

Right, see you at YYT tonight then.

Oh, still no photos by the way - still can't afford a camera, so you'll have to make do with flyers and stuff until I can.

0093 back in the game

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0093.jpg0093, the rehearsal space and one of the keystones of the local music community here will be opening their new premises this weekend. It's a few blocks down the road from their original space on Lingling Lu. The new address is 1228 Quxi Lu, near Dapuqiao Lu and the nearest metro is Luban Lu on line 4. Head to that address and you'll see a hotpot restaurant with a giant globe in the foyer. Go in, turn left, cut through the kitchens and down the stairs and you're in the new home of 0093, a familiar underground bomb shelter setting.

There's eight large practice rooms down there that were in the process of being kitted out when I visited on Tuesday. Tian Tian and Shaoqing assured me that it would be open this weekend though and on their Douban group the opening date is set as tomorrow. I didn't take any pictures while I was down there so this photo on the right is of the old space on Lingling Lu. The practice rooms in the new location are larger, but it's essentially the same set up.

Their original premises closed back in October for 'refurbishment', but there was more going on than that and the place didn't open again. There was the attempt to open a space out near Caoyang Lu, but when Andy and I visited that one it wasn't exactly up and running. This new location on Quxi Lu seems like a safer bet though. Whether the bands who have migrated to other rehearsal spaces will return remains to be seen, but hopefully 0093 will be able to settle down now and continue their good work. 

Sammy Sheng at 0093 in National Geographic

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Picture 1.jpgThe other day a good friend of mine celebrated his birthday. One of the presents he received was a copy of National Geographic. He was pretty excited about it. This wasn't just any old National Geographic, it was one with a big old article about this here city in it. Imagine that.

So anyway, I was flicking through, skim reading and looking at the pictures as is my want, when my eyes rested on a familiar name in the opening paragraphs: Sheng Jiahui. I decided to read a bit closer and there, opening National Geographic's article on Shanghai, is a piece all about, well, Sheng Jiahui (who you probably know as Sammy from Candy Shop) entering the 0093 rehearsal space. Ok, so the article is about how she's in a band which she's no longer in (Black Luna) and about them rehearsing in 0093 (which has now been shut down) and the whole article plays into the cheesy cliched East meets West thing, but still I thought it worthy of a mention and a link (right here).

I say I thought it worthy, I actually completely forgot about it again until SmartShanghai posted up a thing on it in The Wire, right here. Thanks SmartShanghai.

Where's Wally 2: More faces in the crowd

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dingmacrowd.jpg Mao's new photography policy seems to be working pretty well so far. There's clear signs at the entrance about the use of flash photography and they're ensuring people with enormous cameras are registering before the gigs. Of course, it's not a total ban, which means that there are still people catching some good gig photos and occasionally turning and capturing a crowd shot like this one above, taken during Top Floor Circus' closing number. More photos from the 0093/Rock Shanghai CD release party here.

Top Floor Circus, Mao Livehouse

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dingma.jpgThe curse of the podcast struck again with a disappointing turnout at Mao last night for the 0093/Rock Shanghai CD release. In fact, the curse stretched to the two podcasters as well - Andy was sick and I had to work, meaning I didn't get there until late. Actually the crowd wasn't too bad - it was the sort of audience that would have looked fine in YYT, but that looked poor in the much bigger Mao. Especially after Mono had had the place completely packed the night before.

So I got there pretty late. I'm not going to review the show properly, as I only really saw the one band, but there were a few friends of the blog who I know were there for most, if not all, of last night so feel free to add your own round-ups in the comments.

The one band I did catch and that I'd darted across town to make sure I saw, was Top Floor Circus. We talked a bit on the pod about how you're never quite sure what to expect from Top Floor CIrcus, but they were in full band mode last night and were on top form. It's been a while since I last saw them like that, but they played a great (and hilarious) set. Lu Chen performing air fellatio while acting as a prostitute during 进来白相相 is an image that will be burned into my mind for a while. They closed out with a reworked version of 上海欢迎你 that was given a more negative twist with a chorus of "Shanghai doesn't welcome you, we've got no culture and no renminbi".

After that, I saw the opening few moments of Firefighter, but I needed to head over to Swiss James' leaving thing so only saw a little bit. The rest of the crowd was leaving as well at that point. Someone who did stay on though was Pu Pu, lead singer of The Mushrooms and later, following a message from Lisa Movius, it became clear why. Apparently, Firefighter are a Mushrooms cover band. Lisa had mentioned this to me earlier in the night, but I thought she just meant they sounded a bit like them. Nope, according to Lisa they actually played covers of The Mushrooms' songs. Bizarre.

Anyway, there certainly wasn't 500 people there last night, which means they've still got some CDs left. If you didn't make it along to Mao, head over to 0093 and see if you can get your hands on a copy. 

0093/Rock Shanghai CD release this Saturday

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shanghairock2009.jpgIt's been a while, but this show is finally coming around. You can hear us talk a bit about why it's significant on the podcast by clicking here. You can also read an interview with Jiang Shaoqing, one of the main men at 0093, right here. What I want to focus on here though, is the line-up changes that have taken place since I last looked at the event page.

Perhaps most significantly, Top Floor Circus are no longer the headliners. They're still playing and are still the act with the biggest draw, but they'll be going on second to last. So who is at the top of the bill now? Firefighter. Well, they're billed as the 嘉宾 (support band), but they're going on last. Not really sure why. I'll be honest, I don't really know who these guys are. According to the PR blurb, they're four boys from Shanghai University of Engineering Science. They also seem to have been involved in the early stages of the Pepsi Battle of the Bands, judging by this video. What are they doing going on after Ding Ma? Your guess is as good as mine.

Another line-up change is that extremo band Double Control Where are no longer on the bill. Candy Shop (Tian Pin Dian) are however, which is good news. They may well have been on the line-up for a while and I forgot, but it doesn't really matter - the important thing is that they're playing and that last time they hit Mao, they tore the place up.

Finally, the other addition is Second. As I mentioned on my previous post just now, the girls will be teaming up with Pinkberry again. Overall then, Saturday night at Mao looks something like this:

20:00-20:30 The return of Bang Bang Tang
20:45-21:15 Candy Shop
21:30-22:00 Pinkberry + Second (+ Pinkberry's music video premiere)
22:15-23:00 The always brilliant Top Floor Circus
23:15-00:00 Firefighter

Not bad. Remember: 50 kuai gets you in and a copy of the CD (though they're limited to 500, so be prompt) and this is a big night for the scene. Come on down and support it.

Video: Second at 696

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So 696 is no more, but here's a video of Second performing at the space which the band has just put up on Douban. The song is《如果可以 》, which I'm going to awkwardly translate as If I Can.

Second are also going to be at the 0093/Rock Shanghai CD release thing on Saturday at Mao by the way. They'll be doing their combined show with Pinkberry again (as seen here), which should be well worth catching. In fact, there's been a few line-up changes since we last checked in on that event and so some of what we said on the pod last night is no longer 100% accurate. Sorry about that. I'll stick up a post in a minute with all the updates and the info and the hype and the blah, blah, blah. Just be patient.

Podcast Six: Pinkberry "The Pinkberry Song"

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Podcast number six then. And it goes a little something like this: an important announcement is followed by a review of last weekend (Mao's grand opening, Rock for Roots & Shoots), a little chat about a venue closure and a certain local band's releasing of full length tracks and then a look ahead to this weekend's action.

For those of you listening online and not on an iPod or something, you can click away to your heart's content with these links right here.

Update: The points we mention from the Layabozi review were made by site editor Mike, not Zack. Sorry.

Reviews
Mao's Grand Opening
A response to the Crystal Butterfly piece*
Rock for Roots & Shoots

Chat
The closure of 696 Live Bar
The Mushrooms release full length tracks

Previews
More on the 0093 CD
Top Floor Circus
Bang Bang Tang
Bang Bang Tang's music video for I Love Flawed Men Best
Pinkberry
Pinkberry's MV shoot
Extremo band Double Control Where
More on Mono
Ashura

* Since we recorded this podcast, Lisa Movius has, to her credit, responded to the post on Crystal Butterfly. You should read her comments too.

Generation gap

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lipang.jpgNext Saturday at Mao is the 0093/Rock Shanghai CD release party. Top Floor Circus are going to be headlining, Bang Bang Tang will be making their comeback and Pinkberry will be there debuting their new music video that night. But more importantly, it's something of a milestone for the scene and especially for 0093. Dan Shapiro, over at The Beat, has labelled the release "the definitive moment for local rock in 2009." Read Dan's piece in full here. One quote that stands out, is Jiang Shaoqing, 0093 founder, on what the CD means to him:

"This is a change in the overall environment [of local rock music]."
Sure, he might be hyping the release a bit, but it makes for an interesting contrast with another local music piece that has gone up recently over on CNNGo. This second piece is by Soma PR Director and Shanghai-based writer Lisa Movius, who regular readers will know well too. It's essentially a preview for last Friday's official opening of Mao and in it, Lisa talks to late-'90s band Crystal Butterfly about changes on the scene. Read the full article here. Here's a quote:

'"There are more people, and slightly better venues, but really not much else has changed aside from that in terms of Shanghai rock," says scene veteran and Crystal Butterfly (Shuijingdie) guitarist Wang Wenwei'
In talking about the pressures of work and how bands still struggle, Wang may have a point, but are the band the best people to comment on the current state of music in Shanghai? I'm not sure I've ever seen a member of the band at a gig where they weren't performing. Having hardly played themselves in the past few years, do they really understand what is going on in Shanghai today? Do they deserve to be held up as a leading light on the Shanghai scene?

Comebacks and time outs

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HardQueen.jpgSwings and roundabouts. A couple of bands are making comebacks this month, while another local favourite are taking a break.

I mentioned last week that Hard Queen had pulled out of the Layabozi Culture Clash night at Yuyintang. They were also scheduled to appear at NeochaEDGE's Search for Creative City event the next day, but cancelled that too. So what's going on?

The band have had a few line up problems of late. First Zero, the bassist, quit and then his replacement broke his foot. It seems that following these issues Hard Queen will put things on hold for a bit. Sheena has said that they're "on a break" and won't be playing any gigs for a while. "At the moment I'm not sure when we'll perform again," she told me. It all sounds worryingly indefinite, but I sincerely hope they'll be back soon.

Sheena is a great songwriter and anyone who's seen Damen play in Hard Queen or her other bands (Boojii and Duck Fight Goose) knows what a quality musician she is. It'd be a real shame if this latest set back proves the end of the band. For now, Sheena is insisting it's just a break. Let's hope so.

Meanwhile, two other bands who have had a fair bit of coverage on this site are preparing to make comebacks at the end of this month. I wrote before about the Rock Shanghai/0093 compilation CD finally seeing the light of day at MAO on the 28th and the line-up is a really strong one. Top Floor Circus are heading up an all star line up of local acts that also features Tian Pin Dian (Candy Shop). But the night will also be notable for the return of two scene favourites - Bang Bang Tang and Pinkberry.

When Bang Bang Tang were filming their music video I was trying to get Xiao Bai to tell me when they'd be coming back, but at the time all she would say was after the national holiday in October. The Rock Shanghai CD release party at MAO has now been confirmed as their first live performance in months and they're currently rehearsing hard to make sure they come back with a, err, bang.

Pinkberry have had a number of line up changes recently. Toni and Xiao You - the couple who are the major force behind the band - are determined to continue however, and they will also perform at the CD release show with a new line-up.

All in all, that makes the CD release a huge night. Maybe someone should do a call to arms...
crystal butterfly.jpgSpeaking of websites promoting events, the 0093 compilation CD release will be held under the banner of BBS forum Rock Shanghai. You can read about the CD itself here and the night should feature several (if not all) of the bands on the record. Top Floor Circus, Pinkberry and Bang Bang Tang are all confirmed at least, which makes it a great line-up already. The gig will be taking place at MAO, not at Yuyintang as I stated previously, on November 28th.

The week before, on November 20th, MAO will be holding their opening party. I know, I know, they're already open, but that was just their soft opening period, as is often the way here in China. They're now ready to harden up, as it were, and that night will feature Jason Falkner, The Mushrooms, BIZ and, interestingly, a return for Crystal Butterfly.

Crystal Butterfly, who have also just set up a Douban page, are part of the older generation of bands who were formed in the late '90s. They emerged following the split of Lunar Eclipse, other members of whom went on to form The Honeys (playing tomorrow with Yuguo at YYT incidentally). Crystal Butterfly are fronted by Pang Pang - one of the main guys behind Soma and consequently MAO itself.

Since 2005, when they released their Magical Mystery Tour album, the band's appearances have been a bit sporadic (they've had a bunch of trouble with their former record company too) but I imagine being in a band and seeing what the MAO stage is capable of is a hard mix to ignore for Pang Pang. Maybe this is the start of a comeback?

Finally, the gun-toting Dan Shapiro has started doing regular previews of forthcoming gigs over on CW, giving you a more in-depth overview of where to spend your weekend, but while I'm mentioning some upcoming shows, here's a few others I'm looking forward to in the next couple of months:

Oct 31 - 24 Hours release their new album at YYT
Nov 6 - Pet Conspiracy (craziness from the capital) at MAO
Nov 7 - Hanggai (Mongolian folk outfit) at the Dream Factory
Nov 21 - Boojii, Duck Fight Goose, Boys Climbing Ropes, Resist Resist, Triple Smash rock for Roots & Shoots at YYT
Nov 29 - Zhi Wang and Xian (Shanxi duo) at 696 Live Bar
Dec 5 - ReTROS promise some new songs at MAO

Video: New Vector at Yuyintang

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So as promised, here's the video of New Vector performing Run Just Run from last night's 0093 Showcase. Can you see the headphones?

0093 Showcase 12, Yuyintang

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fanqiechaodan.jpgUpdate: Sloppiness, plain sloppiness. I muddled the line-up there a bit for the 0093 showcase - an observant commenter has set me straight. I spent the weekend over in Century Park for JZ Festival and all that jazz (ba-doom-tish). It was good fun, but it's a bit different to the kind of thing that I cover on this blog, so I won't be doing a write up on it - instead, keep an eye out for a report on China Music Radar soon or, if you read Chinese, you can check out Vivien from Muscle Snog's blog on the first day here complete with photo of "白杰同学". On Sunday night, Cui Jian (the Godfather of Chinese rock 'n' roll) stated that he felt that jazz and rock were "one family and can't be divided". Maybe so, but after his set (which disappointingly failed to include 一无所有 or 新长征路上的摇滚) I was faced with a choice between Us3 and 0093. I went with the latter.

The line up was as follows: 膨胀螺丝 (who I keep translating to Anchor, but may also be known as PZ64)、New Vector布莱梅乐团 (Bremen)、被告乐队、暴走蜗牛舞指乐队 (Fingers Dancing).

Having darted over on the metro to Yuyintang, I turned up just before half 9 to find I'd missed 被告 and Fingers Dancing. Someone else caught the latter's songs on video so you can watch them here if you're interested.

The first band I did catch was New Vector who I'd been listening to a bit in the week. They started with an instrumental track before being joined by their lead singer in a hood with little animal ears on it. This meant she looked a but like the short one out of Gorillaz (thanks Steve for that observation). According to the other bald English guy I was with, they also sounded a lot like the bands who used to play in the cafe on Buffy the Vampire Slayer. I'm afraid I've never really watched it so didn't get the reference, but if you did then you'll know what he meant. Regardless, I liked them.

One slightly odd thing to note was that both the drummer and the bassist played with headphones in. Not that I haven't seen drummers headphoned up at gigs before, but this guy had his hooked into his PSP which he would then fiddle with in between songs. Not sure what the bassist had on his, but it struck me as a little weird. Anyway, they only have a few songs at the moment, but gave a good performance for a new band and are one to keep an eye on I reckon. Have a listen for yourself here or wait a couple of minutes until I post the video I took of their song Run Just Run. They would have been the highlight of the night for me if it hadn't been for the band who came on after.

0093 to close for refurbishment

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0093.jpgStarting from next month, the original 0093 on Lingling Lu will be closed for refurbishment - that means all the practice rooms and the 03 Space performance area. It'll reopen with its brand spanking new look early next year. In the meantime, 0093's new premises on Caoyang Lu will be hoping to host the bands who were using the original spot before (their planned rehearsal rooms at Mao Shanghai will take a bit of time to sort out).

I quite like the, err, rugged feel of 0093 but, given that it'll be closed for two months, it could be a fairly substantial refit. Who knows, maybe they were inspired by the fact that every square inch of Shanghai is being dug up/covered in scaffolding at the moment in preparation for Expo next year. Then again, maybe not.

Of course, I don't actually play an instrument so I don't rehearse there and I'm not suggesting that they keep it as is - that's none of my business - just that I like it how it is at the moment, in a musty, dank sort of a way. That's easy to say as an infrequent tourist there. Anyway, with that in mind, I snuck down yesterday to take a few snaps for posterity - you can find them after the jump.

You probably know this already, but 0093 is much more than just a rehearsal space. Here's a neat little round up of its importance and, linked in the comments, an interview with Jiang Shaoqing from last year from a certain deceased Shanghai magazine. Nevertheless, in terms of purely rehearsal space business, it faces increasing competition in Shanghai now. In addition to the other mainstay practice spaces around town and 0093's own plans to extend their empire at Caoyang Lu and Mao, a whole bunch of new places have opened in recent months. I suppose that's a slightly more plausible reason for the refit than the looming Expo.

I'll head down for a similar photo gallery once they reopen, but here's 0093 in all its truly underground glory:

Behind the scenes at Mao Livehouse Shanghai

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Mao Livehouse ShanghaiOn Sunday I got to take a look inside the new Mao Livehouse Shanghai and thought I'd share what it looks like with you. They've gone with the Beijing Mao look of rusted metal on the outside and down the long corridor through which you enter the main space. For anyone who went to WTF before (I saw Ghostface there a couple of months back), they've ripped out all the seating around the dancefloor to create a bigger crowd area and have moved the bar to a much more sensible place. Some of the seating up at the back will remain as will the pool table (though not where it was before). It could be a great venue.

Soma are going to move their offices down there eventually and there'll also be Tian Tian's CD shop and a 0093 practice space, but all of that will come later. For now, they're just focusing on getting the bar, stage and public area ready in time for the weekend. Remember that 200 kuai My Little Airport show that they were due to open with? It's been postponed so the place will now open (this being China, it'll be a soft opening of course) on the Saturday with Sonnet, Momo and Life Journey. That show's a freebie by the way too.

Free and 200 kuai won't be regular door charges apparently, they're more likely to fall in the 40-50 kuai range, which sounds more sensible. The guys there are also aware that it'll take time to build up the gigs and the crowds but are in this for the long haul, which could be good news for Shanghai.

More photos (including shots of the interior and some older ones of the outside under construction) after the jump.

Shop 'n' roll

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shop.jpgWang Tian Tian of 0093 has announced that he's going to set up two CD shops in Shanghai. Called Indievox, the shops will be on the second floor of the Channel One Mall on Changshou Lu (where this all took place) and at the new MAO Live House Shanghai at Red Town. Lisa Movius confirmed the announcement in English on Twitter this afternoon stating that the two would be Soma shops. The third corner of this music shop love triangle is, as the shop names suggest, music website Indievox.com where you'll be able to listen to tracks and buy CDs too.

Tian Tian's excellent Taobao shop, previously under the name of 0093, has now been renamed to Indievox. In the announcement on Douban, he lists Soma first as among the labels he'll be stocking together with Modern Sky, Miniless and most other indie/alternative labels that you've heard of in China (though he doesn't name Maybe Mars, perhaps just an oversight?).   

Tian Tian has been here before of course. The short-lived CD shop that set up in Yuyintang (where the seating area is now directly in front of where you come in) was his and it was great to have it there, but unfortunately the sales didn't cover the rent and he shifted it all online after just a few months. Perhaps with backing from Soma and Indievox, he can make a success of it this time around.

Speaking of Soma and MAO Shanghai, Dan Shapiro recently revealed more details on that opening show here. The date will now be September 25th, the band will still be Hong Kong "twee rock" outfit My Little Airport and they'll be charging a whopping 200 kuai on the door for the privilege. Just in case you're wondering if that's a typo, I'll repeat: 200 kuai. Ouch. I know My Little Airport are fairly well known and all, but still. By way of a comparison (I don't mean to favour anyone here, it's just because it's coming up in a few days), Splitworks have got Handsome Furs in town on Saturday at YYT with Boys Climbing Ropes in support for 80 kuai on the door. Hmm. Apparently the new MAO will put on a Casio-sponsored showcase of local bands the following night for free, but let's hope 200 kuai for twee rock isn't a statement of intent eh? I at least hope they put Momo or someone on in support to give them some exposure.

Triple Smash and Five Pointed Star releasing EPs

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triple smash.jpgI suppose you've probably guessed already from that picture there, but Triple Smash have announced that their debut EP will be released on... October 7th.

Triple Smash are the instrumental rock band formed by guitarist Jerry Li after he left The Mushrooms about a year ago. Most of their gigs have been as Zhong Chi's backing band, but the Indiechina showcase back in July gave them a chance to do their own thing and they impressed.

They'll be performing at a few shows in the run up to the EP release, first supporting Guangzhou bands Golden Cage and Dahua@Mei tonight at YYT, then with half-Brit, half-Chinese outfit Strobolight (as well as Duck Fight Goose) on Friday and finally with China's answer to Mogwai, Wang Wen on September 11th. So there's no excuse not to catch them really.

Also releasing an EP soon are nu-metal band Five Pointed Star. They've been playing gigs on the fringes for a while now - often involved in the 0093 showcases and playing out at Yangpu's Live Bar - without headlining too many of their own shows downtown. They did take part in the Shanghai Night Fever event last month and gave a good account of themselves, but they were a fair way down the bill. That's set to change though with their Awake EP and a dedicated release party at Yuyintang on September 29th at Yuyintang. 

While we're on the subject of forthcoming releases, Lezi has posted a topic on Douban stating that Soma's Indie Top 2 compilation is nearly done. They're just putting the final touches to a record that will feature 14 tracks from local artists. For some background on the ultimately disappointing first Indie Top CD, check out coverage from Mr Best here. Anti-climax doesn't really come close to describing what happened last time around with Indie Top, but Soma claim to have listened to the feedback and taken it on board when producing the follow up. We'll see.

Finally, one of the bands who featured on the first Indie Top compilation and will most likely feature on the second are Little Nature. These guys are apparently in the final stages of producing their album too. The band have been a bit flat the last few times I've seen them and seem to have lost their old energy. Will the CD bring it back? Again, I guess we'll have to wait and see.
The Rogue Transmission might be taking a little break for the summer, but they've just stuck this video up on Spin Earth. It's for the track Simon Says and is a compilation of live footage of the band at Zhijiang Dream Factory, Anar and down in the 0093 rehearsal space. It's their entry into the Free The Noise competition that will see the winning band pick up a development deal with Island Records so make sure you give it 5 stars after you've watched it (click here if you can't get the embedded video to work). 

Coverpeople at 03 Space

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coverpeople.JPGBack in October last year, Neocha released a free downloadable album called Tomorrow's Afternoon Tea. The record was comprised of original tracks from bands or solo acts with female singers. It's a great listen and something that I keep coming back to months later. One of the stand out tracks on the album was Coverpeople's 我们 and last night she played down at the 03 Space at 0093.

The 03 Space is pretty small and generally the shows there are soloists with a semi-acoustic guitar. Last time I was there on a Sunday afternoon, there was about a dozen people there - some parents, friends and a couple of little children. There was a trestle table to one side with bottles of Coke and plastic cups. It reminded me of a village hall back in the UK.

Coverpeople, actually just one girl, has more of a following though and there were over 70 people crammed in last night, including a group of six or seven girls from Wuhan who came wearing home made Coverpeople t-shirts. It was ridiculously hot down there, with only a couple of ceiling fans to keep people cool. Still, it was completely worth it.

It was an intimate and personal show with Coverpeople able to engage the audience in conversation in between songs. I often think when you're just one person with a guitar it's hard to maintain the audience's focus, but her simple yet beautiful tunes are hard not to like. She also enlisted the help of a piano player for several songs which kept things varied.

我们.JPGOn the door, they were selling CDs which made me think of Trent Reznor's comments on distributing music. I was kind of disappointed when I got home to discover the CD only had two tracks on it, but it's a nicely produced object and still worth owning.

The "label" that produced the CD is Eryu Forest, basically Coverpeople and her friend iiiis, and I recommend you check out their website and join their Douban group if you haven't already.

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