Results tagged “Runaway Snail” from Jake Newby

Douban round-up

Untitled1.jpgA few bits and bobs floating around on the Douban:

Monkey Shine have a couple of new demos. Dodgy band name, but still, the songs are here and are emo-tastic.

Runaway Snail have had a line-up shuffle. They're now joined by Mei Er from Top Floor Circus, which seems a good move. The band should be gigging again next month once they've had a chance to rehearse together.

A bit of Beijing band news: in addition to Bigger Bang! coming back here armed with a new song for The Longest Nite show (12 hour party thing at the Mercedes-Benz Arena with 7 local bands) on the 19th, Queen Sea Big Shark are also returning, playing MAO Livehouse in April. Also back in April are Subs, whose Kang Mao and Wu Hao have recently formed a new, seemingly acoustic, band called 拜拜,多谢你们的鱼! No plans for them to play down our way yet, but they'll be at Yugong Yishan with the aforementioned Bigger Bang! next Tuesday.

Hedgehog, who are also in Shanghai on the 19th to promote their new album, have uploaded four new tracks to their minisite here. They've also announced that there'll be a separate CD of demos available at the gig, details here.  

Finally, a couple of days ago a little message appeared in the bottom right corner of Douban pages with a few polite reminders from your friendly Communist Party. In particular they'd like to let you know that according to Constitution of the People's Republic of China, the following things are banned:
'Organising to incite resistance'
'Fabrication of information or distortion of the facts, spreading of rumours in relation to the social administration'
'The inciting of illegal assemblies, marches, demonstrations and general disturbing of the public order'
'Engaging in violations of state, society and collective interests'
Please note these are rough/truncated translations of the points made in the notice (see the picture above for the full versions), but the message is pretty clear. Just in case you were wondering what that box was....

Sing Runaway Snail's 'Fangdong Tai Tai'

A little while back Pinkberry released an instrumental version of one of their tracks and invited people to lay down their own vocals and send it in for a competition on their Douban. Runaway Snail have now done the same thing with their sing-along 'Frenchman and his Landlady' or 'Faguo Ren yu Fangdong Tai Tai'. Here's what the band say:

'As millions of migrant workers return to Shanghai after the Spring Festival, Shanghai's housing problems have once again come to the fore. Good accommodation affects your life, love, job and mood. Who doesn't want a little space to call their own? Who doesn't want a good landlady? That's why Runaway Snail have decided to hold the 2011 'Fangdong Tai Tai I Love You Cover Competition.'  

So if you want to pick up the mic and lay down your own version of the song, click here, download the instrumental and then send your version to The video embedded here should refresh your memory of what the original sounds like.

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

0093's 3 year anniversary at YYT

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.

Music Fever are doing stuff

fever.JPGI've written a fair bit about Zhu Lu He Feng and all the stuff that they're up to (new track from MR. here by the way), but I haven't really written much about Music Fever, another locally-based music collective. Well, this post is an attempt to redress that balance a bit.

Founded at the beginning of this year, Music Fever is headed up by Fanqie Chaodan, Sunny (from New Vector and Runaway Snail), Tong and Wang Er Xiao. They've organised a number of events in the last few months, mainly featuring local bands and folk artists and this Saturday they've got another one coming up at MAO Livehouse. That pits them against a different type of fever, namely The Fever Machine (with Pairs, Rainbow Danger Club and X is Y at YYT, details here), but there's enough difference in the genres to mean there shouldn't be too much clash. 

The Music Fever event is called Here Comes the Spring and features a six act line-up including Mogu Hong, April (from Beijing), V-Day (from Nanjing), Runaway Snail and New Vector. They're also releasing a CD at the same time (listen to some of it here) featuring tracks from the aforementioned artists along with others. There's a full tracklisting and more details here.

Anyway, here's the full details for the event and if you dig the folk stuff and can bear to miss The Fever Machine at YYT and Ben Houge's pop set at Not Me, then this is one to check out.

Kunming Lu Live Bar's last stand

P5160191.jpgThat's that then. You've seen your last gig at the Kunming Lu Live Bar. Or, if you've never been, you've missed your last chance - last night was the last ever gig there. Talk is that they'll move to a new premises, but it's not clear when or where it will be. The turn out last night wasn't huge, but it should be heartening enough for the owners to feel it's worthwhile maintaining a livehouse up in the old university district of town, unless 696 Livehouse is now seen as fulfilling that role.

I got there about half nine and a band was still sound-checking, which they did by playing nearly a full song - causing some confusion amongst people who had just walked in like me. Things finally got underway nearer to ten with a band who's name I missed. Shame, because they were pretty good. They played the post rock stuff that the kids here dig. I usually get a bit bored by post rock bands pretty quickly. Yeah, I'm a neanderthal, but after about three songs I just long for a singer. Luckily this band only played three songs. Perfect. If all their gigs consist of such short sets, mark me down as a fan.

Next up were another post rock act. Sort of. They were instrumental rock really, in the Triple Smash vein. The members were familiar too - bassist Leeko and guitarist Sunny also play in Runaway Snail. Again, I missed their name (I know, I know, but the line-up was quite different to the advertised one and I was outside getting some fresh air when they started). UPDATE: Mr Best has pointed out that it was probably New Vector, who are now singerless. He's almost certainly right. Again though, they were really good. This time round, they played four songs, but luckily for me, the fourth one featured vocals from Leeko. It was a cover as well, one which completely took me by surprise. Once I realised what they were playing, I started filming it, so I'll put the video up in a minute and you can check it out yourself.

A few things to listen to and watch

| here's a round up of what's been put up on Douban recently.

There's a new track up from the Curry Soap, one of the acts that this blog likes to follow closely. It's called Old Hong Kong and you'll find it here.

Another track comes courtesy of Runaway Snail. Their's is called Argentinians' Melancholy and can be heard right here.

Army in the Cupboard is the name of a new track from Sun Ye, which you can have a listen to by following this link. It's pretty different from his other stuff, but as always I recommend you give it a go.

Chaos Mind have added a recording of Fxxk Me Hard taken from a practice session back in August. I'm not sure what Fxxk could mean, but it certainly rocks hard. Check it out here. They've also put up some videos of their recent YYT show, one of which is embedded on the right here. The rest are here.

Hama (her out of Second) has a new demo up as well. It's called Secret and is here. As a special New Year's treat, she's also made the track Philosopher available for download. You'll see it on her artist page as well.

Finally, Nanjing's 8 Eye Spy performed at D-22 in Beijing recently to celebrate the release of their new album, How Damn Far to Yinma Lane? There's a whole load of videos from the show and an interview with MOGO, right here

Runaway Snail put up a track

fanqiechaodan.jpgAll these songs being put out, it's like Christmas is coming early.

Remember Runaway Snail? Of course you do, they're the excellent new band from Fanqie Chaodan, that I wrote about here and here and that Andy and I raved about here. Well, now you don't have to base your judgement on the crappy video I shot as they've put up a quality recording of Frenchman and His Landlady on their Douban. Listen to it here.

It's a witty song about a French friend of Fanqie Chaodan who lives next to Yuyintang and gets so wrapped up in a Mogu Hong gig one night that he loses track of time and returns home to find he's locked out. This results in him shouting at his landlady to let him in - the sing-a-long chorus that you hear.

Go give it a whirl.

Podcast Two: 24 Hours "Your Song"


Welcome to podcast number two. This week, we talk about coverage of Chinese bands and their politics in the Western media, review the Misandao, Culture Clash and Runaway Snail shows from the weekend and preview what's coming up in the next couple of days including 24 Hours' album release party. Then we realise we've got a bit of time left at the end and go back to talk about Low Wormwood's gig last Sunday, before playing Your Song, a track from 24 Hours' new album.

Here's some links for you while you listen:

Political Articles

Alice Liu's article on Chinese bands being "too pampered for politics"
China Music Radar's post on the Alice Liu piece.
Andy's response and the ensuing comments

Show Reviews
Write-up from the Misandao show
Mortal Fools' MySpace
Misandao's MySpace
Culture Clash write-up
Write-up from the Runaway Snail gig
Video of Runaway Snail

24 Hours' new video
24 Hours on MySpace
Rustic on MySpace
Video of Second live at MAO
Second's Douban page

Low Wormwood show write-up

Video: Runaway Snail at Live Bar

Here's a track from Runaway Snail for you. Something I've realised since I wrote about them at 0093 is that the guitarist, also the guitarist in New Vector, is Sunny, formerly of short-lived goth metal band Moongazer. So there you go. Anyway, check out this track from his and Fanqie Chaodan's new band, it starts a bit slow and the sound quality isn't the greatest, but stick with it. It's called "Roll, Leo", is the one that references Top Floor Circus as I mentioned before and as we discussed on the podcast and it also features Fanqie Chaodan reading from his Lei Feng covered notebook.

Runaway Snail and Caramel Mint, Live Bar

caramelmint.jpgIt's been so long since I was last at Live Bar up in Yangpu district that I can't even remember what the last show I saw there was. The space inside has changed a bit and seemed smaller than it used to be, though that might just be because I'd been in MAO the night before and most gig venues here seem small by comparison with that place. Still, it was fairly busy, although mostly with the bands themselves and their friends. There were a few randoms like me as well and a healthy foreigner contingent that I hadn't expected. Hello to the two Hungarian biologists that I met by the way.

Anyway, I was there to see Runaway Snail and New Vector again after Sunday's 0093 showcase. Unfortunately, New Vector didn't play in the end so the (culinary-themed) line-up was Honey Roast Pork, Caramel Mint and Runaway Snail led by Fanqie Chaodan.

Honey Roast Pork is one guy and his guitar and he played a few stripped down ballads to give the night a low-key start. Something I've found from listening to the tracks he has on his Douban is that his voice actually sounds better live. On a couple of the tracks at his artist page it doesn't sound all that strong, but seeing him live it really came across.

Next up were Caramel Mint. That link above is just to their Douban group I'm afraid - I haven't been able to find a page where you can listen to their stuff. Hopefully they'll set one up soon though and record some tracks because they've got a really accessible rock sound and are a band to keep an eye on. Nini, the lead singer, has a cracking voice and she seems to really enjoy performing - she hardly stopped grinning the whole set. The crowd loved it and kept calling for an encore until the band obliged.


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