Tonight: Yuguo are back (again)

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yuguo.jpgWhen I woke up this morning, it was absolutely chucking it down with rain. I might have known. You see, indie-rock band Yuguo, who you may remember came back a few months ago after a year away, are back in Shanghai tonight after their nationwide tour. What's that got to do with the weather? Well, I'm starting to wonder if the band aren't cursed.

When I saw them in one of their first comeback gigs earlier this year at the Midi Festival, they had one of the longest festival soundchecks I've ever witnessed. Once again the weather was a problem - they were opening the second day of the festival, an absolute mudbath despite the other two days being gloriously sunny. People weren't in the mood for sound problems. The band got through a full minute of their opening track at one point before cutting it off, shouting at the sound guys and starting all over again. Even the most ardent fans were getting impatient. Once Yuguo got going, they played a great set and won over the vast majority of those who watched them, but plenty of people had drifted away during the soundcheck by that point.
Then there was the CD release for their new Zhang Haisheng-produced album Babel. This was scheduled to take place on the same night that Carsick Cars and The Gar brought their huge double-bill of a tour to Yuyintang. I'm not sure how many people turned out to watch Yuguo at the Dream Factory, but it must have been tough going up against the two big names from Beijing. As if that wasn't bad enough, problems with the distribution company meant that the CD itself wasn't ready in time for the release gig and fans had to leave their name and address on the door instead.

Hopefully the band have put this spell of bad luck behind them. As I write this, the sun is coming out (a bit) in Shanghai. Yuyintang is indoors obviously, but when you get a thunderstorm in this city the roads turn to rivers and it puts people off going anywhere. In a recent post I wondered whether last weekend marked the start of a wind-down for the summer anyway and there's already people on Douban moaning about the start time for tonight's show (9:30pm) being inconvenient now that they're not at university and are out in the suburbs. There doesn't seem to be any support act tonight (though you can win a guitar) and they've even been referred to as a single person in some write ups, which can't help. But the band deserve a break.

They've been all over since launching their tour here back in May, visiting 19 cities in total, and embarking on a national tour is still a big challenge in China. They were once (relatively) famous for being the only full-time indie band in the city and are certainly hard-working guys. Hopefully that hard work will pay off tonight and their homecoming will be more of a triumph than a damp squib.

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LOVE your blog! So how did the Yuguo show turn out to be a triumph?

Er, think I entered too fast on my earlier comment. I meant, DID the Yuguo show turn out to be a triumph? ^-^

Thanks for your comments Suzy, appreciate it.

Unfortunately, after all that I wasn't able to make it to the Yuguo show (not because of the weather, which was alright in the end, but for other reasons I shan't go into). I guess that makes this piece look a bit hypocritical now but there you go. Still, enough people were able to make it to ensure it was far from a damp squib. You can see some videos from the gig here and here.

Ah no worries, life happens. The links to the videos don't seem to work for me but I just found 3 on youku to watch, thanks!

Yeah I can't get those links working now, I must've put the HTML in wrong. Anyway, the videos (probably the ones you've just watched Suzy) are here in case anyone else wants to see them:

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