Results tagged “Angry Jerks” from Jake Newby

Midi, day 1: The day of Dingma

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midi1 031.jpgMr who? Never mind the absent headliners, nor the fact that the constant playing of 'To Be With You' and highlights of their appearance in Beijing rubbed it in a bit (if you were actually bothered about them in the first place), Midi was a big success yesterday. The food is crap and over-priced, but that's really the only complaint - the set up is good, the site looks really nice and everyone seemed to be enjoying themselves. There was a decent crowd yesterday, bigger than I'd expected given that most people had to work and that the main act had pulled out last minute, and all the bands played well.

With notable mentions of Angry Jerks (who played a great set in the often daunting opener slot) and Sonnet (who really got the crowd going mid-afternoon), the day really belonged to Top Floor Circus. Dingma were fantastic and had a big crowd jumping around, singing along and laughing their heads off for their entire set. So much so that they were called back on stage for an encore - something I don't think I've ever seen with a festival band who aren't headliners. They should have been in the top slot of course, but never mind they were brilliant and the crowd loved it. The Antidote stage too was on fine form after a quiet start. With Acid Pony Club, Ben Huang and R3 getting a good crowd.

The sun's shining again and today should be another belter, get yourself to Century Park.

The Mushrooms and Angry Jerks, Yuyintang

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The Mushrooms22:08:09.jpgHere's a paradox for you: I don't really like shouty rap-metal, but I really like The Mushrooms. It's odd and it means that I often seem like a hypocrite when talking about other bands, but if you see The Mushrooms perform live, then you get a pretty clear explanation. Take last night for example, they went on last in the double-header with Angry Jerks (which will be repeated in the Jerks' hometown of Nanjing in a few weeks) and brought the house down. If the Soma-produced Mushrooms album ever sees the light of day, it'll be interesting to see whether it can really capture the energy and atmosphere of their live shows (how do you really record the kind of performances that can bring band and audience members to tears?!). In the meantime, they remain one of the best live acts in the city.

They rounded off a night that had opened with Double Control Where. And this is where my hypocrisy comes in and I feel a bit guilty. They're good Double Control Where, they're just not really my thing. Yet they play a shouty-chorused metal that isn't a million miles away from the aforementioned headliners. Indeed, with the singer's bleached hair, they look a bit like a shanzhai version of The Mushrooms. That's no criticism - the band weren't purposefully ripping anyone off at all, they just looked a bit like them (mostly the hair). Anyway, they were a lively opening act and the crowd really got into it.

Second were on, err, second and this was the, ahem, second time I'd seen them. Sorry. UPDATE: I tell a lie, this was actually the third time I've seen them (caught them at the Shanghai Night Fever event last month too) rendering my lame puns even more pointless. I found myself a bit more engaged by them than last time and they gave a pretty strong performance. They're aren't many all-girl bands in Shanghai (though I'd say the gender balance on the scene is better than most, if far from equal) but Second eschew the cutesy pop-rock trappings that the other girl groups seem to go for and their show is all the stronger for it. They're not exactly Happy Strings (the punk outfit that became Momo) but it's refreshing to see an all-girl band that doesn't feel the need to go all shiny happy girly girl. If you know what I mean.

xiaohe.jpgI've been out of town the last couple of weekends so there's been no gig reviews. To be honest, it's been a bit quiet in Shanghai anyway. Not literally of course - last weekend's metal extravaganza and BrainWave Communication's night of noise put pay to that - but there's only been a handful of shows that I would have gone to anyway, truth be told. Not this weekend though, this weekend's a good 'un.

First up on Friday night is avant-garde folk artist Xiao He. You might know of him from Glorious (sometimes Glamourous) Pharmacy, or 美好药店, themselves in town in early September. Even when it's just him and his guitar, he's a great performer. Last time he came to YYT solo, he was supported by Lu Chen and both produced pretty pared down sets. This time round, Lu Chen is supporting again but by way of his experimental project Zhi Wang. Meanwhile, the cover of Xiao He's new album sees him sporting a look that falls somewhere between Beijing opera and The Village People. Whether these factors will make for a more dramatic show than last time remains to be seen - these two are rarely easy to predict.

Next, The Mushrooms are joined on Saturday by Angry Jerks - the "psychobilly" band from Nanjing. It promises to be a lively double-header. Rap-metal isn't really my thing (one of the shows I wouldn't have gone to were I in town was last weekend's Linkin Park gig), but The Mushrooms' live show is infectious and I, like many people, have been won over by their performances, especially since they've recovered their mojo in recent months. Double Control Where and Second are also on the bill for that one.

That leaves RESO 7 to complete the hat-trick. I wrote a bit about that one last week and, as I'm still knackered from my travels, and am generally fairly lazy, here's just a quick recap of who's playing: Mai Mai, Ben Houge, OK=NO and Torturing Nurse. They'll also be collaborating with each other in the second half of the night.

So, three nights, three great gigs and three completely different genres. I can't wait.

The details: All of these are at Yuyintang. I'm not purposefully featuring them so heavily, it's just they're putting on the best shows right now. All of these will start around 9:30pm. Xiao He is 60 kuai, Mushrooms and Angry Jerks are 40 and RESO 7 is 30.

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