Friend or Foe and friends at YYT

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p623206965.jpgThere was a solid turn out last night at Yuyintang for a midweek gig that featured The Instigation, Friend or Foe, X is Y and The Beat Bandits.

The Beat Bandits and X is Y have been written about before on this blog, the other two less so. Unfortunately, I only caught the tail end of The Instigation, though I did catch them tearing through a Reagan Youth cover which was excellent.

I don't have an awful lot to add to what I've written about X is Y and The Beat Bandits previously, so let me just rattle through them quickly before writing a bit more about Friend or Foe, the newest act on the bill. X is Y went on third and had a new bassist, which should see them have a more settled line up now. It's math rock and it's played well, though I felt their set went on a little long last night. That's not necessarily their fault - just that someone needed to remember that it was a Wednesday and that there were four bands on. 

The Beat Bandits closed the night out and were excellent as always. They were in four person mode, with the girl on the keyboards. They're a tight outfit, play some great songs and have an energy and enthusiasm that's hard not to like. The crowd always feeds off them and it only took a couple of songs before everyone was attempting '60s-style dancing out on the floor at YYT.

However, the thing I really took away from the night was the performance of Friend or Foe. This was my first time seeing them - I think they've only had a couple of shows previously - and I was really impressed. Not that their competence was particularly surprising, their line up features Zack on the drums, Adam on guitar and Fish on bass - all strong musicians. I don't think they have a Douban or anything yet (please correct me if I'm wrong on this) so I'm going to describe their sound to you as broadly funked up rock and occasionally just straight up rawk. They reminded me at times of Cake and at other times of Soulwax songs like 'Too Many DJs' or 'Much Against Everyone's Advice'. But maybe that was just me. Regardless, they're really good and you should make sure you catch them next time they're playing live. Photo courtesy of 幽小巫

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kinda bummed to read you here jake.

i took it personally (i was not organizing the event, friend or foe were...) to make sure the night would go on as planned. and i posted a schedule time on douban the day before, then displayed it yesterday on the window by the stage and in the bands backstage.

it was maybe the first gig i have ever seen in 5 years in shanghai in which all 4 bands were on right on time. none were late, everyone played the set duration they asked for.

so maybe you think x is y is too boring to play a 30 minute set but that's exactly what was advertised. not one minute more, audio has been recorded for proof ;o) i know i'm taking it personally, but honestly all bands did an amazing job of starting and finishing on time, without me hassling them.

hey Fabi, thanks for your comment and for pointing out a few things.

As I said in the piece, I wasn't suggesting that this was your fault so sorry if I caused offense. You're right, the gig was one of the best organised I've seen in a long time, that's why I missed most of The Instigation at the start - I'm not used to things running on time.

I didn't see the posting of the schedule on Douban, but having seen it now, I realise you're right and that the bands stuck to it minute for minute. That's no mean feat and so I have to admit, given that you put that out there, I'm willing to hold my hands up here and admit I don't really have any grounds for complaint.

I don't find X is Y boring by the way, as I said in the piece I thought you guys played well and I've written before about the quality of the band on this blog.

It was definitely a well-run night, thanks to fabi. x is y played well, as per usual, as well as all the rest of the bands. thanks for the pub, jake.

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