Results tagged “Boys Climbing Ropes” from Jake Newby

Boys in the 'jing

6cbde9b4gw1dnls697bk1j.jpgJust a heads up for those of you reading this in the cold north - two of Shanghai's finest will be in Beijing this Friday as Boys Climbing Ropes and X is Y release their split CD Summer and Winter Warfare at D-22. They'll also be at Yugong Yishan the next night. It's a great record and you'd be a fool not to head to either of these release parties. You can check out a couple of tracks and read more about the CD here.

Also on their way up north are Duck Fight Goose, another of Shanghai's best exports. Their debut LP, Sports, will get a release party in Beijing on Saturday 17 - another date for your diary. Read more about that one here.

It's been a great year for Shanghai releases, and these are two of the best, so if you're in Beijing, make sure you get to these gigs.

Sending our boys (and girls) to Mongolia

jordan.jpgFriday night saw the last fundraiser for DJ BO's Rock Naadam tour of Mongolia, held at LOgO. The three bands who will be heading from Shanghai to UB all played - The Horde (Ho-Tom and Franco), Moon Tyrant and Boys Climbing Ropes - there was a good turn out and it was a good night. 

DJ BO has done a sterling job getting the whole thing organised and has been promoting the hell out of it up in Mongolia. He's got radio spots (see after the jump), billboard posters and all sorts. The bands head to Beijing this Wednesday, from where they'll be taking flights to Mongolia. They'll then be playing in UB and Darkhan over the period of Naadam. It's all massively exciting and I for one wish I was going with them. 

Anyway, in addition to the gigs, BO has been doing plenty of promotion here in Shanghai too to help raise funds and that includes a spot on ICS. If you click here, then go to Saturday 2 and 'Shanghai Live', you'll find a bit on the trip with interviews with some of those involved about 12 minutes 30 seconds in. Check it out.

The Fever Machine album release, Yuyintang

fever.jpgWhile Pet Conspiracy were over in Pudong playing around with welder's masks, sparkly cloaks and whips, and Voodoo Kungfu were performing what looked like Texas Chainsaw Massacre live, The Fever Machine released their debut LP at Yuyintang with a straight up rock show. There were no fireworks, no theatrics - just solid musicianship and The Fever Machine playing their no-nonsense rock 'n' roll to an appreciative crowd.

Boys Climbing Ropes had kicked the night off, playing a set of mostly new material. They slipped an old favourite in toward the end, 'Whale Song', but the rest of the songs were presumably what we'll hear on that split record with X is Y after the summer. The crowd was still a little thin on the ground when they opened, but they blasted through a strong set regardless. Credit to them too for appreciating one of the key qualities in a support act: brevity.

The Beat Bandits were up next and played a solid set as well, albeit one familiar to anyone who's seen them before. People still lap up their cover of 'Whatcha Gonna Do About It' though, and why not.

And then came The Fever Machine. As I mentioned last week, the physical CD wasn't available at the show (the band had a contingency in place immediately), but they didn't let that throw them. They played their way through the album tracks with the professionalism and skill that anyone who has seen them play over the last year or so has come to expect. There was showmanship for sure, but they're a band who don't dress their music up particularly, they just lay it out there. And the crowd loved it, particularly a group of three guys at the front who stripped off (Fire in the Hole?) as the riffs built up. 

If you haven't got on it yet, check out the mono version of Living in Oblivion right here and I think I'm right in saying that The Fever Machine have been added to the bill for Proximity Butterfly's show this Friday at YYT so you've another chance to catch them before they head off touring for the summer.

Photos are pending, my camera's a bit screwed at the minute....

X is Y release album taster

301417792-1.jpgX is Y have released a teaser track taken from their forthcoming split record with Boys Climbing Ropes. The track is available for free download, is called 'Never Sever' and is a great appetite-whetter for what's to come. The bandcamp site linked to here says that the album will be out on October 1st, though I'm not sure that date is confirmed yet. Chances are the record won't be out until after the summer though. Stick this track on loop while you wait. Clickedy click.

Gotan Project cancel and other bits and bobs

Flyer_1_h.jpgJust a quick note: if you were planning on forking out 400RMB for the Shanghai World Music Festival in Zhongshan Park this weekend, just bear in mind that one of the big headliners, The Gotan Project, have now cancelled. Equipment problems at customs or something. Blah. Also, and this is a big one, the Uzbekistan National Song and Dance Troupe have cancelled too. I know. That means there'll be some line-up shuffling - see if you can make sense of this press release.

On to other matters: Battle Cattle are new in Shanghai, have a Douban with a track up on it already and are playing a show with Kungfuology favourites Next Year's Love next week. It's free and at Yuyintang - can't say fairer than that. Here's the details.

Another date for your diary, at least for those who can bear gigs at LUNE, is May 28th when Boys Climbing Ropes, The Beat Bandits, Moon Tyrant and DJ BO come together for a show to help those acts raise money for tours in Mongolia and Japan. 

And another one for June 10th if you plan that far ahead: Beijing act Yantiao return to Shanghai with a lightly re-jigged line-up after impressing at Live Bar a while back. They're with Pairs, Guijian and new Shanghai duo Death to Giants, featuring him out of Moon Tyrant and him out of Rainbow Danger Club. Baddaboom.

Video: Boys Climbing Ropes at Midi

Morgan put a nice little round up of Midi videos on SmartShanghai here, but neglected to mention a certain band, so here they are. Click through to Tudou for a whole bunch more.
I just lost all of my Midi photos. Not sure how it happened, but yep - woosh, into the ether. Nightmare. Anyway, the third and final day was a memorable one and wrapped up a successful festival that will hopefully have encouraged Midi, and the authorities, to do it again next year.

The first notable action of the day came courtesy of The Mushrooms, making their first appearance in Shanghai in... ages. They acknowledged the fact, before explaining that their debut album was coming soon and playing a bunch of new songs throughout their set. The Mogu army was in good attendance and in full voice for the more familiar tracks though, with 'Mama' and 'What's Going On?' particularly getting the large crowd going. It was a triumphant return, let's hope we don't have to wait so long for their next appearance. Check them in the video here.

Boys Climbing Ropes then set up on stage, which was confusing as they weren't scheduled to be on until later. Once they were all set up, a bit of stage-side debate followed, only for them to unplug and go off again. Instead, the band originally slated for that slot (who were running late and nearly didn't make it) turned up and played. When Boys Climbing Ropes did eventually take to the stage, they gave a great performance to a large and receptive crowd. Every song had the crowd going and the dust they kicked up from the mosh pit was enough to make Century Park look like downtown Beijing. They were fantastic.

More festival trouble

banner-blossom-by-2011-nanjing-international-music-festival-mask9.jpgI didn't make it to any festivals last weekend in the end, but I've spoken to a few people who did and the word is that there were a few problems. 

Festivals in Beijing were subjected to an alcohol ban, though at least most of their line-ups weren't messed with (Avril Lavigne played to the apparently dusty, poorly laid out space at the Pinggu Festival at least). The same can't be said for the Nanjing Blossom Festival who had some overseas and China-based foreigner bands struck off the bill at the last minute. So last minute in fact that many of the bands had already travelled there and only found out when they arrived. UPDATE: Dan Shapiro of The Fever Machine and Morgan Short of Boys Climbing Ropes have more details on the problems at Blossom in the comments. Beijing Daze has more on events up north too.

Once again, Midi Festival must be shitting their pants right about now. They've got a big weekend lined up in Century Park and have a fair bit riding on Mr Big playing on the Friday night....

Cover stars and other bits and bobs

0 127.jpgSeen this cover? ==============>

Elsewhere, Friend or Foe are in the studio and recently had The Horses/Acid Pony Club boys oversee the drum recording. Word is there could be a remix album in the works too once the actual album comes out. Exciting stuff. Read more on the Zangnan site.

Meanwhile, Billboard magazine have done a piece on five Beijing bands to watch as they hit the States in the coming weeks and months, courtesy of former Time Out Beijing music editor Jennifer Conrad. See that one here.

And finally, the people over at Neocha were profiled in the New York Times recently, check that here.

Break for Borneo CD release, Yuyintang

7 128.jpgIt's taken me a couple of days to get around to writing this, but then it took Break for Borneo a little while to get around to having a physical release of their CD so I guess we're even. Sort of. If you missed the CD release and haven't downloaded the album yet, you can do it for free right here. The CD release had become part of a 24 hour festival thing at YYT that had kicked off at 3pm and the venue felt pretty festival-ly when I got there in the evening, with people all face-painted up and wearing odd headgear etc. It was the perfect vibe for Break for Borneo's summery feel-good tropical rock and the crowd really got into their performance, which also featured a cameo from Adam Gaensler

Duck Fight Goose had opened the night incidentally, but I got there late and missed their set. I was disappointed to have missed them, but even with them out of the equation, the remaining three bands made for a strong line-up. Rainbow Danger Club followed Break for Borneo and managed to get into the tropical rock theme. An expectant roar went up from the crowd during the opening notes of 'Neighbours on the Rooftop', but it wasn't quite the song they expected - instead, the band performed a reworked version of the track in a reggae-like style.

Shanghai 24/7 launch, Yuyintang

shanghai 24 7 002.jpgI was actually thinking of going to see Shanren on Friday night and check out the new MAO Livehouse, but then I bumped into Ho-Tom The Conqueror at lunch time and he reminded me that he was on the bill for the Shanghai 24/7 thing so I ended up going to watch the same bands that I always watch at the same venue I always go to. Or at least, that's how it looked on paper. The night actually ended up having a surprisingly fresh feel to it.

Of course there's the new Yuyintang, but after a few gigs there now I can't claim not to be used to the refurbishments any more. It was more to do with the bands. Ho-Tom himself kicked off and was joined not only by regular conquering companions Franco and George, but also by the full Song Dynasty line-up. It's the first time I've seen him with a full band backing like that and he made the most of it, playing the longest set I've seen him do at Yuyintang. The full band brought something different to his songs and the crowd got into it too. Word is they're all recording some songs together so, though it'll be a few months yet, I'm looking forward to that one.

X is Y were up next and seem to be playing all their songs in double time these days. They certainly have a lot more energy and punchiness (for want of a better word) about them. Their set got off to a flyer and didn't really look back, with people jumping around again (which as Mr Fossy noted the other day was something that didn't really happen much before at X is Y gigs). Of course, despite the new energy to their set, the songs are still notably X is Y tracks, which is a good thing - I just feel like they've found a new balance to their sound that is working really well for them at the moment.

Videos from Saturday night at Live Bar

On Saturday night at Live Bar I took a video of Rainbow Danger Club doing 'Drown the Creatures' and it came out pretty well if I do say myself. Unfortunately, the file seems to be corrupted or something because I can't load it onto any computers. It plays fine on my camera but... bah technology. Luckily a few other people were filming too.

Shanghai24/7 have a couple of videos here while the one of X is Y on the right here comes from this page where you'll find a whole load of clips from the evening. The man with the movie camera was Bren from Stegosaurus? so many thanks to him for sharing and making me slightly less annoyed about my own video failure.

Pairs, RDC, X is Y and BCR at Live Bar

live bar feb 26 039.jpgThis was the best show I've been to in a while. Partly that's because there's not been much else going on recently, but mostly it was because this was four excellent bands playing a packed out venue and all were on top form. I've noted before that it takes a while to get to Live Bar if you live down town, but the new space is a vast improvement on the old one and this show was definitely worth the trip. Plenty of people made it too - the room was packed out from beginning to end and even the space outside the venue was fairly crowded with people.

That's not a big surprise really, given that four of the city's best bands were in attendance and the whole thing was free. Things kicked off with Pairs who were on fine form. They played a couple of new tracks and, though no five kuai notes were thrown, Xiao Zhong and F did have a bunch of flowers thrown at them part way through the set. Also, you might have read this article about how Xiao Zhong has always ripped off other bands when starting his own bands, but we found out on Saturday night that Pairs' 'I Want to Die in the Ocean' is actually a reworking of Arcade Fire's 'Wake Up'. Who knew?

Next up were Rainbow Danger Club who are warming up for their album release at the same venue on March 18. If you weren't already excited about that show, then Saturday night's performance should have put you in the right frame of mind. The band performed a rousing set, complete with reworked versions of 'Drown the Creatures' and 'Neighbours on the Rooftops', that had the crowd enraptured. By the time they rounded off with 'Enduring Love', couples were spontaneously dancing together at the front. They were outstanding and frankly a hard act to follow. And yet...

Reasons to be cheerful

p853117947.jpgIt's fair to say that the last few weeks haven't been packed full of gigs in Shanghai. But that's always to be expected at this time of year and with Yuyintang reopened and Mao Livehouse opening up again in March, things are looking up. There's a couple of shows on this weekend at YYT, but next weekend is when it all kicks off again (and I'm not even counting Mrs Nas) with Boys Climbing Ropes, Rainbow Danger Club, X is Y and Pairs at Live Bar. Here's a quick round up of other bands/shows heading your way at various venues around town in the next few weeks and months in the order that I remembered them (more details once they're closer)*.

Rainbow Danger Club album release party
Break for Borneo album release party
Moon Tyrant album release party
Shanghai 24/7 launch party with BCR, DFG X is Y and Ho Tom
Lots of Trash a Go Go/MT Hooligans shows
More Fever Machine and friends shows including one with Old Doll and Miku from Nanjing
Hedgehog album release
Bigger Bang
A big Japanese post-rock band returning
Then there's all those festival rumours too

Plus, don't forget about JUE (running in March and April), which includes a Maybe Mars showcase with the long-awaited return of Snapline and AV Okubo, Duck Fight Goose and Pairs.

* These are just a few of the shows going on that I've stuck here to make up for the fact that posting has been light recently and it is in no way meant to be a conclusive list. There's probably some whopping omissions, so feel free to leave more shows in the comments.

MAO Livehouse going out with a bang

176843692_453415f6d3.jpgThere have been plenty of gripes and moans about MAO Livehouse since it launched at Red Town just over a year ago, but at least when they leave their current premises they'll be going out with a bang. For their last show before they shack up with the Luwan district government and Pangpang takes over the reins from Lezi, they've put together the following line-up:

Top Floor Circus
Boys Climbing Ropes
Chaos Mind
Runaway Snail 
Little Nature

Dingma and BCR on the same bill? Can't say you're not tempted by that. It'll be on Saturday 29, start at 8pm and set you back 50 kuai.

Picture courtesy of ShanghaiStreets. Please note: MAO Livehouse show may not be as exciting as this

KISS, The Misfits, Wham! and Joy Division at YYT

e316421.jpgThis was a great night at Yuyintang - packed out and with great performances. Ordinarily, I'm not really into cover bands, but these were all done so well and with such humour that it was impossible not to enjoy it - unless of course you were that irate Wham! fan who complained that Pairs' "tribute" was sacrilegious before storming out. For me, that just made it funnier.

The night started with X is Y (plus two) as Joy Division. They did the songs really well - although I'm not sure about the metal/ska moments that crept in during 'Love Will Tear Us Apart'. Any problems they may have had with people not recognising Joy Division's back catalogue (people stood around me kept asking who they were supposed to be) they overcame with an energetic performance that meant people got into regardless.

If their's was a pretty close study of Joy Division, Pairs' version of Wham! was something else entirely. With F and Xiao Zhong dressed in Choose Life t-shirts, the pair ripped through a couple of classic Wham! tracks but in the Pairs style, before Xiao Zhong kicked 'the other one' out of the band and went solo for 'Careless Whisper', which featured one of the best endings to a set ever as he kept everyone singing while he packed up his shit and walked off the stage.

Boys Climbing Ropes then came on and did The Misfits, with Little Punk bouncing around the stage as Danzig. They really got the crowd going and had the biggest mosh of the night, though some dickhead threw a glass at some point. Someone had crowd dived during Wham! with a bottle in hand as well. Seriously, how fucking stupid are you? Anyway, I don't want to dwell on it - it shouldn't take away from a great performance from BCR, something they reprised at LOgO last night as part of the farewell to the Xingfu Lu bar.

Finally came KISS who looked and sounded incredible. The make up, the costumes and the music were all spot on. They really had it down, with Dan staying in character throughout and all of the band members with studied mannerisms - Fabi's bright red tongue was waggling all the way through the set. They even did the synchronised bit with the guitars. It was brilliant.

So yeah, a brilliant night - well done to everyone involved. If anyone has photos or videos from the night, please send them my way, I still don't have a camera. Ta.

The Fallacy and Boys Climbing Ropes at Yuyintang

e291715.jpgYeah I still don't have a camera so here's the flyer in place of a photo. Photo donations are welcome by the way.

Anyway, last night saw two bands at Yuyintang - The Fallacy, a post punk outfit from Henan, and Boys Climbing Ropes who you know plenty about.

The Fallacy kicked things off and played a solid set. They sounded a bit like ReTROS to me, similar kind of basslines and what have you. But I like ReTROS a lot so that was a good thing. Perhaps due to a lack of familiarity among the audience with their material, they failed to really kick things off and to spark much of atmosphere in the crowd. People weren't going crazy, but everyone seemed to enjoy them overall.

Boys Climbing Ropes were on after them and rattled through a set that got everyone worked up into a deliriously sweaty state. Some things don't change. There were old favourites, but they also debuted a new song, full of their trademark energy. No idea what it's called, but it sounded good. The Boys are back in town and it's been a while since Yuyintang had that many people jumping around like loons, hopefully tonight we'll have it again - 'tis the season. 

This weekend is a biggie

3936540837_297d90ca08.jpgWe mentioned this before, but this weekend is one of the best gig-going weekends in a ong while. Time to get those cobwebs blown out of your ears. There's every possibility that I'll spend the next four or five nights at Yuyintang. Here's why:

Tonight - X is Y, Friend or Foe, The Beat Bandits and The Instigation

Tomorrow - Choir of Young Believers

Friday - Boys Climbing Ropes and The Fallacy

Saturday - Streets Kill Strange Animals, Bigger Bang! and Pairs

Sunday - Hydrophobia

Ka-boom. Alright, so I might flake on that last one - deathcore on a Sunday after all that lot might be too much for me I'm afraid - but that's not a bad few days of gigs. Added to the mix are Queen Sea Big Shark at MAO Livehouse on the Saturday for some corporate gig thing (likewise I think Bigger Bang! are involved in flogging Puma goods at MAO Livehouse on the Friday with Mavis Fan). 

Take that summer malaise...

STD turn 3 at MAO Livehouse

p499839342.jpgThis was a huge line up at MAO Livehouse. There were about 213 DJs and noise people, Danger, Lymbyc Systym, Pet Conspiracy, Boys Climbing Ropes and The Fever Machine. Yet the turn out was a bit disappointing, more on that in a minute.

First up, the bands. I missed all the experimental/noise acts unfortunately. The first band I saw were The Fever Machine. Check them out here. I'm one of those people who has to listen to a song a few times before I can really decide if I like it, often my instant reactions aren't entirely accurate. I've now seen The Fever Machine about three times I think and their songs are getting some traction in my head - they've got a couple of belters. They played a tight set with hardly any breaks in it (perhaps due to the smallish crowd) and were on good form. They've been playing a lot recently and are showing no signs of slowing down any time soon so go see them.

Next up were Boys Climbing Ropes in possibly their last show before a summer break. It'd been an age since I'd seen them play at MAO Livehouse (around a week) and it was good to see them back on the stage. Seriously, I can't get enough of this band and when they dominate the MAO stage in that way there are few better live shows. It was a short set, but if they are taking a little time off for Shanghai's ridiculous summer, they went out with a bang.

That's pretty much it for the bands from my side. Pet Conspiracy weren't on until later and I had to scuttle away to watch an abysmal England performance. But what about the attendance? China Music Radar recently posited that the Expo was having an impact on gig attendance in Shanghai. The massive influx of foreign acts, they argue, has possibly led to foreign band overkill and has bred indifference among local fans. Read the CMR piece here

SUBS bitches!

subs2.jpgThis was the kind of gig where I ought to open the post by saying something like 'I'm still recovering', but fuck it, I'm no way near recovering from this. Maybe I never will. This gig was immense. Here's a bit of disclosure: I was mildly involved in this event. Not really enough to skew any judgment, but I'll tell you the story regardless. I'd been on at Kang Mao for a while about Subs' new album and about coming back to Shanghai because they hadn't played here in ages. About a month or so ago she called me to say they'd booked a date in Shanghai, she said they didn't have any support bands yet, but they had a slot at 021 bar and what did I think. What did I think? 021? For Subs? Fuck that.

So yeah, they ended up at MAO Livehouse instead and then we got Boys Climbing Ropes and Pinkberry in to support. It was a line up I was excited about, but events still conspired against me and I managed to miss Pinkberry's set, which was a shame.

Still, I was there in time to watch Boys Climbing Ropes give a towering performance. Anyone sick of me banging on about how good this band are needs to skip the next paragraph. Seriously, they were so, so good. I love it when they play a venue like YYT and you're really up close and everything, but they're basically one of, if not the only, Shanghai band who can really own the stage at MAO and when they do it's incredible. They played a fairly short set (Subs wanted on fairly early, it was a school night for a lot of people remember), but they don't need long to get things going. They have the stage presence and they have the music to just really kick things off. They were brilliant.

Then Subs came on. They played a lot of new material - fair enough, this was a release party for their new album after all. That meant that things didn't kick off in the audience as much as they could have done, but things still got pretty lively down there. Oh yeah, there's no shit photos of the bands from my point and shoot for this post by the way, Subs gigs aren't for taking photos, they're for throwing yourself around like a loon. Anyway, Kang Mao was amazing, she really is the queen of fucking everything. Wu Hao is one of the best guitarists you'll ever see and as for the head gear, Luwan Rock has pointed out the likely influence. That's also where I stole this photo from.

Anyway Subs were immense. They are the best, there's no two ways about it. I got a nice lump on my forehead after someone brained me in the middle of one song, but it was completely worth it. For me, the highlights were like this: Postlude from the new album, Kang Mao nonchalantly expressing a wish to crowd surf by flicking a finger out to the audience with a 'should I?' expression on her face that sent people into a frenzy and them closing the night out with What More. Shut up, shut up, what more you wanna say?

Is it the weekend already?

beatbandits.jpgPretty much, yeah. So other than watching England cock things up in the World Cup against a country who don't even call the game football, there's a bunch of top gigs coming your way. Here's a cursory run down.


Alright, so there's an all-girl band event going on up at 696 which is very right on and everything (Ann, Miss Panda and Machiato are the bands), but let's face it Friday comes down to a straight fight to the death between The King Khan and BBQ Show and the Queen of Fucking Everything. Who's your money on?

In the blue corner: The King Khan and BBQ Show. At YYT with The Fever Machine (interview here) and The Beat Bandits. Totally crazy and weird. Plus, they split up the other day and have only just reformed after some fucked up shit at the Sydney Opera House or something. 

In the red corner: Subs. At MAO Livehouse with Boys Climbing Ropes and Pinkberry. Subs back in town after over a year away and with a new album to boot. China's best live band plus local favourites BCR and Pinkberry in support isn't too shabby. As has been stated elsewhere, 'expect death and mayhem'. 


This one's probably an easier choice, even if the main show of the night was completely passed over by another so-called music preview out there on the interwebs. You've got the Summer Rock Party up at 696 with Max, Sear, Purple Planet and a whole bunch of others, but down at Yuyintang it's the third installation of Han Han's Good Jive night. 

Good Jive's bill looks a little like this: Ho-Tom the Conqueror (possibly with a new line-up featuring the Curry Soap), X is Y (top notch math rock), Stegosaurus? (good times rock and on stage antics), The Beat Bandits (excellent garage rock) and Sun Ye (legend).

And that's pretty much how it looks for the weekend.

Stegosaurus? CD release at Yuyintang

steg.JPG"Stegosaurus in da house / Stegosaurus burn it down / Check the mic and pass it round / Y'all dinosaur's is goin' down"

Exactly. I love that song. Sorry Dan. It opens Stegosaurus?'s new CD and they opened their set with it last night. It rocks. The CD's really good too. I'm not sure how you can get it now if you weren't at the gig last night, but I assume it'll be available at their other gigs or something. Anyway, you should get your hands on it. Last night it got a good release party too, with a good turn out and a load of top performances, including from the Stegosaurus? boys themselves of course. Congratulations to them.

There were roughly 642 bands on the bill last night, so when I wandered in around 9ish a whole load of people had already been on. I got there as Baby #13 were finishing off and didn't quite make it into the main room to see them. Rainbow Danger Club were up next. Experimental rock is I guess how you classify them, though they probably rail against things like classifications of music. They pull out all the artsy rock things, last night they played guitars with sticks and did some vocals through a megaphone (and that was just the first song), but, having seen them a few times now, I quite like them. Oddly, there was a slower conventional rock song somewhere in the middle of their set, but overall it was pretty interesting stuff and I think they've got a good sound.

Dragon Pizza came on after that and gave a typical Dragon Pizza performance, i.e. they were great. It wasn't exactly their usual crowd, but they're one of those bands who don't really know how to give a lacklustre performance - they just go all out every time. Yuki's got a job as Stage Manager or Performance Manager or something at the Japanese pavilion at Expo, so this was their last show for a while - at least until after Expo - which is a shame, because I always enjoy watching them play.

Boys Climbing Ropes were on next. Meh. Then Stegosaurus closed the night out with stage fights, costumes and big balloons filled with glitter. Good stuff.

Boys in Beijing

xiaopengke.jpgYou guys up in the capital have been getting a whole load of Shanghai goodness coming your way lately. About time. First The Mushrooms tore shit up at MAO, then it was announced that Duck Fight Goose and Boojii were heading your way (three times no less) and now you're getting Boys Climbing Ropes up there too. Sure, BCR have played up north before, but this time, in addition to a 2 Kolegas show with the amazingness that is Reptile Retard, they're going to be on stage at the Strawberry Festival. Not too shabby.

We've spoken and blogged a bit before about how Shanghai has this reputation for cheesy rock and how the scene here always suffers in comparison to that in Beijing. Fine. But these three bands prove that there's more to it than that. These are three of my favourite bands. There's no need to add qualifiers like "in Shanghai" or "in China", they are three top quality bands on any scale. 

Boys Climbing Ropes played last night at the Stegosaurus? CD release thing (more on that in a minute) and, though they only played a few songs, they were brilliant. I'm not sure how many times I've seen them now, but they're just so good every time. I've written plenty before about how good Duck Fight Goose and Boojii are too. So yeah, get out and see all of three.

Maybe we don't have as developed a scene as Beijing here in Shanghai, but if Duck Fight Goose, Boojii and Boys Climbing Ropes are the bands we're exporting at the moment then people need to stop writing Shanghai off. With those three flying the flag for the city, we're doing alright.

Something for the weekend

new Sun Ye.jpgHello again. So yeah, things have been even slower than normal here the last week or so. As you might have read, me Mum was here (she's fine, thanks for asking) and she takes precedent over this blog I'm afraid. Still, she's safe and sound back in the UK now so I'll be back to it. Not that she's not into her music incidentally (she digs Glamourous Pharmacy and Liu Kun's new solo album), just that we went travelling last weekend instead of gigging.

Anyway. It's a good weekend to get back into the fray because there's a whole load of stuff going on. Here's a run down if, like me, you fancy heading once more unto the breach:


Yep, things get going early this weekend with the Mini-E showcase over at Yuyintang. That's Sun Ye, Confirm-X, SIG, MHP and DJ Mia all on the one night. Can't wait.

Before that, down at Fanfare (528 Fahuazhen Lu, near Dingxi Lu) at 7.30pm there's another showcase of local-based musicians with the highlight being Ho-Tom the Conqueror. Go check it out. If you do happen to miss him playing there, then make sure you catch Ho-Tom at New Faces Underground next Wednesday. Details of that here.


I might be a bit busy with this (ahem), but Friday sees lo-fi electronica dude I am Robot and Proud at YYT and the big Britpop Comes to China thingy at MAO Livehouse (while it still stands). Old Live Bar meanwhile has Pairs (more on them here) playing.


Music Fever (a new local-based collective) have their first night up at Yangpu Live Bar with New Vector and Black Luna on the bill amongst others, Pairs play the other Live Bar (696), while Stegosaurus? release their CD at YYT. I'm playing that CD right now and it's great. Plus the whole line-up is brilliant with Dragon Pizza in the mix and some talk of free actual pizza. Some band called Boys Climbing Ropes are playing with them as well. Which is a shame, because I quite wanted to catch Beijing band Cassette who are at MAO Livehouse with Candy Shop and X is Y that night. Luckily for me though...


...Cassette play LOgO on Sunday. Pinkberry are on the bill too, together with Stegosaurus? again. Great stuff. Cassette's singer contacted me a while back about playing down this way and took tips from Pu Pu when booking the gigs here so they should do well. Of course, that CD release is probably where I'll be on Saturday, but I definitely recommend making the trip out on Sunday to catch them at LOgO. Click their name above to have a listen to their stuff.

Podcast SE02 Ep Six: Hedgehog Apart


The end is nigh. This is episode six of series two and that means we're putting our feet up for a bit after this. We'll be back though, or will we...?

This week's pod looks like this: naturally there's a look back at the weekend's big shows including Local King 3 (featuring special guest star Jagermeister) and the Hell United one year anniversary. The chat bit comes in there as well, partly because there's so damn much going on this week we didn't have time for the usual ramblings in the middle. So yeah, after that it's straight into the previews, before we play you out with a bit of Hedgehog. Treasure this pod, it's the last for a while, possibly ever (one of us could die in a freak Jagermeister cocktail accident tomorrow y'know).

Click out the jams:

Local King 3
Hell United one year anniversary
All your individual band links are included in those posts and, frankly, I'm too lazy to write them all out here so just click those instead.

Julie Doiron & Cold Fairyland
Mod Dance Party (Friday at LOgO, with The Fever Machine and the Beat Bandits and all the Northern Soul hits you love)

Podcast SE02 Ep Five: Chaos Mind Scream


So, technical cock up this week, the pod is intermittently buzzy. Believe me, it will annoy you. Don't let that stop you listening though because here's what we've got: reviews of a couple of last week's gigs, a chat about a certain festival going on in the next few weeks and of course a guide to where to get your rocks off this weekend.

Click and be happy:


The middle bit
JUE 2010 - official site
JUE preview + highlights on CNNGo

(Nanjing's) From the Red

Podcast SE02 Ep Three: Loudspeaker I Will Be Back


This is episode three of series two and it goes a little something like this...

There's reviews of last weekend's gigs including the Playful Warrior show at YYT and a CD release from someone or other. We have a good old chin wag about Douban (which is like crack to us) and the impressive numbers being racked up by some local indie folk acts there. Then, we take a look ahead to this weekend by previewing some of the gigs that you can catch around town. Go listen.

You know what to do with these:

Playful Warrior write up
Chaos Mind
Six Shot
BCR + DFG write up
Boys Climbing Ropes
Duck Fight Goose

Folk Douban
Andy's post
Mogu Hong
List of the top artists on Douban

The last New Vector Show
Video: New Vector's Run Just Run
Jehosaphat Blow and the Blah Blah Blahs

Boys Climbing Ropes and Duck Fight Goose at YYT

bcr.jpgSo Andy was joking on the pod that I was foaming at the mouth over this gig and it's true I was really looking forward to it - even though I've seen both these bands loads of times now, I felt it would be a great show. And it was. Boys Climbing Ropes have, with production from Brad Ferguson, released an accomplished CD and last night's gig showed them at their best. Everything sounded great, the crowd kicked off right from the start and it was just an all round brilliant show.

Naturally, they played material that was mostly from the new CD, but they also slipped in a couple of old favourites. It's the kind of music that deserves to have a room full of people jumping around to it and last night it happened - they got the response they deserve. I'm running out of ways to describe just how much I like this band.

Same goes for Duck Fight Goose. I know I say this every time I see them, but they just get better and better. The bar is already pretty high from their previous performances, but each time they play, they just seem to improve on it. Again, I'm running out of superlatives for them, but they really are that good. If you've never seen this band play before, you seriously need to get along to their next show, they are outstanding. Someone needs to get those guys in the studio now.

As a postscript, I got to LOgO for Dan'sToshi's night there in time to catch some of Jehosophat Blow and the Blah Blah Blahs. I'm not going to write too much about them as I didn't see the whole show, but give that link a click, listen to their stuff and if you like it, I'm fairly sure they'll be at Yuyintang on Friday. I'll confirm that when I can...Confirmed. Details here

More Boys Climbing Ropes watch

P1300118.JPGNot sure if I've mentioned this already or not, but Boys Climbing Ropes are releasing their new CD tonight. The CD is excellent, the band are on top form and Brad Ferguson has, as usual, done wonders. It's a top quality release and if you don't love it when you listen to it, then you need to get your hearing checked out.

I went to see Andrew Bird last night, a sell out at the Dream Factory and one of the most idiosyncratic performances you're ever likely to see, but Andy caught a gig of a slightly different nature. Read about it here.

But yeah, tonight at Yuyintang with Duck Fight Goose in support. Call it hype if you like, but I am genuinely very much looking forward to this gig. You should be too.

Around the interwebs: more BCR-watch and other stuff

p386597326.jpgSo, torpedoing our exclusive on Whale Song, Boys Climbing Ropes have gone and put the track up on their Douban. How dare they share it with the masses? That was supposed to be ours. Still, check out the podcast anyway. Then, sniff, I suppose if you really want to check out a brilliant song without half an hour or so of Andy and I rambling on, I guess you can click here and listen to Whale Song in all it's glory.

Remember: Saturday. Yuyintang. Duck Fight Goose in support. Boys Climbing Ropes CD release. Enough said.

Despite their John and Yoko peace and love bed photo on the right here, Little Punk has been embroiled in a raging battle recently. At least, that's the idea behind a forthcoming article in That's Shanghai. They asked five local bands to review each others songs in the hope they'd talk shit about each other. Here's how it panned out.

Elsewhere, SmartShanghai has some photos up from the Maybe Mars showcase for those who, like me, didn't make it down there. They nabbed them from here, where you'll find a couple of different shots, courtesy of Jenn Wong.

But the really exciting news that I wanted to throw out in this post is that I have the same bedsheets as the ones in this photo of BCR. They're the cheapest ones you can get at IKEA. Now, that is the kind of exciting news you come to this blog for eh?

Podcast SE02 Ep Two: Boys Climbing Ropes Whale Song


Series two, episode two then, looks like this: there's a look back to the Maybe Mars showcase last weekend, followed by some discussion of what they and Splitworks are doing with some of the up and coming bands in both Beijing and Shanghai. There's the fascinating story of our trip out to the new 0093 location and then there's a look ahead to this weekend's big gigs before playing an exclusive preview of Boys Climbing Ropes' track Whale Song.

Clickedy click:

Maybe Mars at MAO
Dan on Rustic
Andy's review

The Mushrooms

Chaos Mind
Six Shot
Boys Climbing Ropes
About that song

Boys Climbing Ropes-watch, plus other new tracks

bcr.jpgJust a week to go until BCR release their new EP, Except for the Darkness (it's no longer going to be called Jingan), a release you really ought to be excited about. As a taster, you can now listen to the track Saskatchewan by hitting up their Douban page right here. This is the flyer you can see next to this text, not sure if it's the album artwork, but it's a nice photo. So there you go. Oh yeah, they're being supported by Duck Fight Goose that night too. Unmissable.

In the meantime, here's some other new tracks for you:

Fearless have a new instrumental track here.

Lezi has a couple of new tracks up, including one called Harmonious (nudge nudge, wink wink) here.

Sun Ye has a new one, right here.

The Lanterns, a band who made a comeback recently, have put a new track up here

Andy's blog will have news from this weekend's gigs by the way, get on it. 

Good Jive at Yuyintang

bcr.jpgLast night saw the launch of Good Jive down at YYT, a night organised by Han Han to promote more experimental and interesting music. It's fair to say it lived up to that billing.

It was a decent if not massive crowd, largely populated by foreigners, who saw Rainbow Danger Club kick things off. The band are pretty new but have been formed by the guy who used to front The Living Thin way back when. They had a good sound, bringing a trumpeter on stage for part of their performance too, and played a solid set.

Boys Climbing Ropes were up next, which I was a bit surprised by - I'd assumed they'd be higher up the bill given that I'd never heard of Attractive Rootine, but anyway. Boys Climbing Ropes gave a nice taster in preparation for their album release in a couple of weeks - they were excellent. I've been listening to the last EP a lot recently in anticipation of the new one and seriously can't wait. Don't miss the release party on the 30th, it's going to be huge.

Next, the night took a turn for the bizarre with a performance from Attractive Rootine. The act consisted of a girl on a constantly feedbacking mic (it wasn't really clear if it was intentional or not) and a guy in a suit and a gimp mask flicking switches and twiddling dials on a pretty complicated looking set up. It was dancey, but no one danced. In fact, the crowd dwindled considerably - no one really knew quite what to make of it and so many just plumped for leaving.

It was a shame because they will have missed Duck Fight Goose close the night out with yet another fine performance. Actually, the crowd did seem to swell a bit again once they took the stage, but it wasn't as busy as it could have been. Regardless, DFG were on fine form.

Han Han launches Good Jive

e175425.jpgAndy and I have spoken/written before about the search for a new Shanghai sound, or at least the attempts to shake off the cheesy rock label handed the city in the late '90s and early '00s. One emerging sound is emo, as Andy has written here. Definitely check out the FAF video here too, it's a corker. If you like what you see/hear, you can download the track for free off their Douban page

But the real reason we started talking about this was because of the crop of Miniless-affiliated bands in the city. Muscle Snog produced a fantastic album late last year, Boojii had a record out too (brilliant band, but I'm still to hear the CD) and the emergence of Duck Fight Goose led us to ponder whether Shanghai might become known for more experimental rock. 

Now, Han Han has launched Good Jive, an organisation whose aim is exactly that. Good Jive is a loosely defined organisation but, according to Han Han, the idea is to promote more interesting types of music in Shanghai and act as a counter-weight to what he sees as too much pop-rock in the city. 

If you're still not up to speed on who Han Han is, he's in Lava/Ox/Sea and Duck Fight Goose and recently joined Boojii. Originally based in Hefei, but now living in Shanghai, he also helped found Miniless records and has a fantastic approach to music and the community here. This was his view on the aims of Miniless when I interviewed him back in June last year:

'Hmmmmm...maybe to spread something, but only spreading, not pushing. It's a little hard to explain that "something", I'd rather say we are trying to bring young people an option. Yes, an optional option. This is also the mission. And I hope this option could help the growth of a certain "Scene", which is totally different than the others in other countries'

Check out a great interview with him here too, from a year previous to mine. 

With such views and with Han Han at the helm, it'll be interesting to see how this goes and what impact Good Jive has on the local music scene here - whether it can help foster more experimental bands in Shanghai. 

Good Jive's first event will be at Yuyintang on January 15 and will feature Duck Fight Goose, Rainbow Danger Club, Attractive Rootine and Boys Climbing Ropes.

China: A Mixtape

For a while now, I've noticed someone called Tenzenmen popping up on Douban leaving comments on the artist pages for a lot of people I like and asking about how to get a hold of the music. Turns out, it was Shaun from the Sydney-based Tenzenmen label and he was putting together a mixtape of all those artists.

You'll notice quite a few blog favourites on the tracklisting:

01 - Low Wormwood (Di Ku Ai) - Who - 5.11
02 - The Curry Soap - Little Northern Europe - 4.18
03 - Godot - No 4 - 6.26
04 - Demmy - Will You Remember Me Tomorrow - 6.42
05 - 21 Grams - 21 Grams - 7.58
06 - 8 Eye Spy - Live - 2.10
07 - Cover People - Trip To... - 3.07
08 - Snapline - Nice Dream - 3.11
09 - White - 47 Rockets (For Wan Hu) - 5.10
10 - Little Nature - Different World - 3.00
11 - Sonnet - A Nice Song - 3.10
12 - I.D.H. - Final Trial - 3.53
13 - Boys Climbing Ropes - Dirty Bots - 4.35
14 - Lava Ox Sea - Regnarts! Yeh - 6.15
15 - 24 Hours - Mr Stevenson (with Train) - 3.24
16 - You Mei You - All Talk No Action - 1.36
17 - Mortal Fools - Drink! Drink! Drink! - 2.04
18 - Muscle Snog - Think and Shit - 3.48
19 - Fanzui Xiangfa - Kill Your Television - 1.04
20 - The Curry Soap - You Keep Everything But His Heart - 1.06
21 - D!O!D!O!D! - A02 - .53

You can download the mixtape for free and read a bit more about it and Shaun here. Go check it out. One comment which is particularly telling from Shaun is this: "Even without understanding the language it's fairly simple to click around these sites [douban and] and discover the motherlode of music you never heard before." Exactly...

Podcast Six: Pinkberry "The Pinkberry Song"


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.

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

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

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

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

Rock for Roots & Shoots, Yuyintang

boojii.jpgThere were six bands last night, so things got underway early. For once, I was on time though (actually, I was embarrassingly early, but never mind). The line-up was a really good one, although oddly it didn't seem to have attracted much of a gig-going crowd. The night was up against Au Revoir Simone over at Mao, which may have had an impact, and of course we talked about it on the pod, which is always the kiss of death for a night. Regardless, a lot of the people who were there seemed to be there for Roots & Shoots rather than there for the music. That's fine, it's a good cause obviously, but it doesn't necessarily make for the best gig atmosphere.

Resist Resist kicked things off. They get better every time I see them and the addition of Tim Anderson on the drums has made a real difference. If there'd been more people there, everyone would have been dancing like crazy. Or like Little Punk.

Pet Conspiracy at MAODiscoballs, alien-like headsets, toy guns, gay kisses. After all the hype, Pet Conspiracy didn't disappoint.

They certainly know how to make an entrance. Last time I'd seen them it'd been on all fours in chains. This time Helen Feng came on stage wrapped in a huge length of red cloth with a silver mask over her head. Check out this photo to see what I mean. YunYun entered atop Huzi's shoulders. From there they launched into a powerful set that had people jumping around like mad. For those who weren't seeing Pet Conspiracy live for the first time, there were some things that were familiar, but it was nevertheless a great performance and, as this was their first time in Shanghai, this will have been most of the audience's first experience of them. They left the crowd buzzing.

Before them Boys Climbing Ropes and Duck Fight Goose had got the night going, interspersed with the Baijiu Robots and other DJs. On the podcast, I mentioned that my hunch would be that the bands would all go on first, followed by the DJs. But Andy thought otherwise and so it proved.

Duck Fight Goose opened the night while the venue was still filling up. An inflatable Haibao with an erection positioned at the front of their stage, the band produced a great performance. With a high quality soundsystem, all Han Han's loops and effects really come through and now that they've got a decent number of songs to their name, the band are really coming into their own. Given the assorted talents on display, it's hardly a surprise, but Duck Fight Goose are a fantastic act and are definitely a band to watch.

So too are Boys Climbing Ropes, but then you probably already knew that. I'm seriously looking forward to the new record and there were a couple of new songs in last night's set that I assume are taken from it. Despite Little Punk being hidden behind a bizarre keyboard set up, they are another band who really do the set up at MAO justice with their music.

All in all a successful night for the Antidote crew I'd say. More photos after the jump.

Don't forget: Hanggai at the Dream Factory tonight.

Did I mention Pet Conspiracy are playing tonight?

petmoon.jpgSavour those naturist photos of Pet Conspiracy. The album has now mysteriously disappeared. In its place though, are a series of shots from a photo shoot for Moon magazine. They're not as funny, they're just gory, but there's some nudity there if that's what you're after. Turns out that's where the one of them holding cigarettes for each other comes from as well. You can download the magazine, which features an interview with the band (in Chinese) here. Or just look at the pictures here.

So a recap then:

Pet Conspiracy tonight at MAO, 9pm, 60 kuai. One of the hottest bands from Beijing right now, this show is going to be crazy.

Boys Climbing Ropes in support. One of the finest bands in Shanghai, these guys are always brilliant live. Check out the latest podcast for one of their tracks.

Duck Fight Goose on the bill too. Take LAVA/OX/SEA's Hans, Boojii/Muscle Snog's San San, Boojii/Hard Queen's Damen and Muscle Snog's Panda and you've got yourself some of the finest musicians in the country. In one band.

Don't miss this.

I'm not affiliated with this show in any way, I just want you all to come because if we can pack out MAO, this show is going to be unforgettable. Be there.

Podcast Three: Boys Climbing Ropes "Dirty Bots"


Welcome to podcast number three. First up, Andy would like to apologize. Despite coming in with a sore throat he went on to eat up the majority of the pod time with his riffing, scatting and bebopping. Sorry. Next week will be a special edition of the pod called 'An evening with Jake Newby.'


So Pod-pickers here's what he/we blab about this week: we take a look back at last weekend's shows and Andy brings up the story of why 24 Hours think Jake is a stalker; we give you the lowdown on the F Visa Ghetto and what Brad Ferguson is up to down in JuJu; we preview this Friday's big show at MAO by talking a lot about nudity; and Jake manages to squeeze in a quick word about Hanggai before we play you out with a track from one of our favourite bands, Boys Climbing Ropes.

And here's your links, click 'em while they're hot:

The 24 Hours write-up, conveniently omitting the stalker story
24 Hours on the MySpace
Rustic, also on the MySpace
A write up of the night at 696
The shocking LeiRen on Douban
Second's Douban page
Resist Resist write up

F Visa Ghetto
A bit of background
The fancy maps
Brad's brother on the bamboo
Shouwang and Shen Jing's noise project White

Pet Conspiracy take their clothes off
AIDS Wolf do the same
PETA, 81Fur
Andy and Kang Mao naked (link currently missing)
Torturing Torturing Nurse
Pet Conspiracy European tour video
Casino Demon and Hedgehog in Washington
Duck Fight Goose
Boys Climbing Ropes

Culture Clash, Yuyintang

Picture 1.pngIn the absence of a review on their own website, I thought I'd give you a quick word-of-mouth-rundown on Layabozi's event at Yuyintang last Friday. Before you get into that, you can check out a few photos from the night here, courtesy of Graeme Nicol - including this one of Little Punk on the right. You can also read about how I thought it was going to be an interesting face off against the ultimately poorly attended punk night at MAO by going here and, finally, you can hear the whole thing discussed in Andy and I's dulcet tones by listening to the podcast here.

So anyway, I saw one of the organisers on Sunday and they said that the night pulled in about 250 people. They mentioned that it was a mainly foreign crowd and that quite a few of the punters said that they'd never been to Yuyintang before. Hopefully they'll come back for more then.

By all accounts they were given a good taste of what the Shanghai live music scene has to offer besides dodgy cover bands in dodgier bars. From what we've heard over here at Kungfuology towers, all the bands - Duck Fight Goose, The Dovetail Joints, Weyghur (still not sure how I should be spelling that one, sorry) and Boys Climbing Ropes - put in strong performances. Crucially, there's been praise for how the event was organised and run, even though BCR didn't get on until 2:20am. Get on the comments if you went along by the way.

Congratulations to the folks over at Layabozi for pulling off a successful night. They've said their focus is still the site obviously, but the plan is for more events bearing their name in the future so keep an eye out for those. Now they just need to update the site a bit more regularly.

Culture Clash vs Three Represents

culture clash.jpgLayabozi, "a web magazine about music in Shanghai today, with a sprinkle of the extra-mural and a tart sassiness--without ever being cloying", are going into events promotion. They put on this Mushroom Jazz event last weekend and tonight they're promoting an event called Culture Clash.

They're not the first website/events link in on the local music scene obviously. Rock Shanghai (more on them in a minute) have done the same - read the review of their one year anniversary here - did one back in July and Indie Heart Attack have their weekly DJ nights at Not Me. Hmm, maybe we should start doing a Kungfuology night. Just kidding. Hopefully these nights help drive more traffic to the sites in question and, as a consequence, this helps those sites develop and post more regular content. We'll see.

I'm not sure why they've called it Culture Clash to be honest. But what I do know is that it clashes with a big gig at MAO. Misandao, the skinhead punk band, are down from Beijing for a gig with two other punk bands that they're calling The Three Represents (in a nod to a famous speech by Hu Jintao). Not only that, but they've got Mortal Fools on the bill as well. That's a pretty fearsome line-up at any time, but throw in the news that it'll be drummer Tim Anderson's last gig with The Mo'Fo's and you've got yourself a potentially explosive night.

This is the first time since MAO opened where there are two fairly big gigs going on at both Yuyintang and MAO at the same time. I'm seriously not sure which one I'm going to go to at the moment - it's the first night where it's not been a no-brainer. That makes it interesting on two fronts: one, how many people will turn out at the respective gigs? Two, who will turn out?

MAO needs around 400 I'd say to have a decent atmosphere. It can pack in more of course, but any less and thing might start to look a little sparse. The reason Shanghai needs a mid-sized venue like MAO is because Yuyintang starts to get cramped at anything over 300. So how will it go? In a city of 19 million, it seems ridiculous that we should wonder whether both venues can be supported, but it'll be interesting to see what numbers both places get.

Podcast One: Lava Ox Sea "Home Hell"


Welcome to the first ever Kungfuology podcast featuring Jake Newby and Andy Best. This is our pilot show/demo. We are aware of some technical teething problems, but go ahead and comment on them all the same. We like comments, there's a lot of material to comment on ... and you don't have to register.

On the agenda this week:

Midi celebrate ten years with ... an awards show. Thanks, Chinamusicradar.
And where were Lava Ox Sea in the nominations!

This weekend was the 12th 0093 showcase at Yuyintang.
We liked New Vector and Fanqie Chaodan with his new band.

Gigs are back on at Harley's bar it seems. promote their first show in the world of indie rock, but go head to head with the old school punk night at Mao Shanghai.

Finally, listen to "Home Hell" by Lava Ox Sea.

Boys Climbing Ropes support Handsome Furs, Yuyintang

BCR.jpgBefore I get into last night's concert, I want to draw your attention to this article right here. It's an interview with Split Works' head honcho Archie Hamilton and it's a great read. I bring that up for a couple of reasons - one, last night was a Split Works-organised event; two, it's written by Morgan Short - bassist in Boys Climbing Ropes, who were the opening band last night. So it seems to have double relevance. If you've seen SmartShanghai you'll know that Morgan is a great writer and if you've seen Boys Climbing Ropes you'll know he's a great bassist, but what you might not know is that he also has some great DJ tips (as a DJ himself under the name Desert Fuck Eagle). His advice to me at Not Me on Thursday was as follows: "the trick is to turn it way the fuck up". I suggest you try that with Boys Climbing Ropes' EP too - you can get it here and download some tracks from their Douban artist page, linked above.

Anyway, last night's gig. Yuyintang was predictably rammed, though with a different crowd to those who usually pack it out (and I assume to who will come out for Glorious Pharmacy tonight). Despite there being a few people in the audience who clearly knew members of Boys Climbing Ropes, the crowd was largely pretty still for their set. They weren't unappreciative of the band - each song was met with a roar and there were long calls for an encore (until Morgan pointed out that there was such a thing as etiquette and that, as support act, they wouldn't be doing an encore). But more jumping from more people would have been good. Maybe that's just me though.

Boys Climbing Ropes were excellent regardless. They played some new material as well as some classic old tracks from the aforementioned EP. Little Punk looked a touch nervous at the start - not an emotion I'd usually associate with her - but she seemed to settle more as the gig went on and the whole band were on top form to produce a cracking set. Let's have that new album soon please.

Then the headliners took the stage. I've got to admit I was always more into Wolf Parade than Handsome Furs, but I've still been listening to their stuff for a while and was excited to see them coming to China. They didn't disappoint, producing an outstanding and memorable performance that sent the crowd crazy - on-stage snogging, crowd-surfing and all. They were brilliant.

"A Chinese indie takeover of the world is imminent"

Carsick-Cars-001.jpgAt least that's what Mick Jagger believes. Mick Jagger, university student in Shanghai incidentally, not Mick Jagger, frontman of The Rolling Stones. Mick makes his bold statement in the most recent column from Alex Hoban on The Guardian who writes mostly about the Japanese music scene (a massive thank you to Suzy for flagging this up for me). The other week when PK14 and Carsick Cars hit the Dream Factory with These Are Powers, Hoban was there and his Turning Japanese column has therefore turned Chinese for the week.

Before going any further, check out his article here: 'Turning Japanese heads to China: The Shanghai scene'. You might also want to have look at my review of the same night here.

When I saw the title, my first thought was how refreshing it was to have someone in a Western newspaper write about the Shanghai scene instead of the Bejing one. When international newspapers cover the Chinese music scene, they invariably talk exclusively about the capital and often just about Carsick Cars - other cities don't get a look in.

Alas, before you even get to the text in Hoban's piece on the Shanghai scene, there's a big photo of... Carsick Cars. By the second paragraph it becomes clear that they, together with PK14, are the focus of the piece. That's Carsick Cars from Beijing and PK14, once of Nanjing but now essentially part of the capital's scene too. Oh.

Tonight: Super Sophia, Morgan and Monroe Stahr

monroe cd rel party New hipster hang out Not Me have a series on Thursday nights where they invite local band members and scene people to come and DJ. It's all organised by DJ Sacco and is an interesting addition to Shanghai's club/bar scene - they've already had Han Han from Miniless and Boys Climbing Ropes' Little Punk take to the decks.

Tonight the lovely Super Sophia from Yuyintang will be throwing down her favourite indie rock tunes and has promised to include plenty of Chinese stuff. Also bringing along his stacks of wax (or an MP3 player and some CDs) will be Morgan Short from Boys Climbing Ropes.

These guys know their shit and this is a night worth checking out I reckon. It's called Heart Attack, starts about 9pm and you can find Not Me at 21 Dongping Lu, near Hengshan Lu (东平路21号,近衡山路).

For some real live rock music meanwhile, you can catch Monroe Stahr over at Anar. I like the back room at Anar, usually the home of Zooma-fronted stoner-dub-rock band Magnetic - it reminds me of the place in A Clockwork Orange where Alex and his droogs go to drink milk plus velocet. Not that it's 很黄很暴力, just that it's kind of retro and '60s-ish. I digress. Anyway, Monroe Stahr are a good band (I've been especially listening to Summer Starts Here a lot recently) and are also worth checking out. It's free, kicks off at 10:30pm and Anar (石榴) is just down the road from LOgO at 129 Xingfu Lu, near Niuqiao Lu (幸福路137号,近牛桥路).

While I'm writing about upcoming shows, tomorrow is Convenience Store (便利商店) at Yuyintang - the Modern Sky-backed indie rockers who are not to be confused with Candy Shop (甜品店), Glorious Pharmacy (美好药店) or Supermarket (超级市场). That one kicks off at 9:30pm and will set you back ¥40.


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