FAZI Interview

By , 2016年 11月 3日

Xi’an’s FAZI (formerly The Fuzz) must have set some kind of a record this year. The band completed an arduous, 42-city road tour of China over the summer that took them to Taiwan, Hong Kong, virtually every province, and even as far west as Lhasa. I managed to catch them near the end of their tour in Dalian, and was blown away by how tight their killer road schedule had made them. They’ve been laying low in Xi’an for the last few months, working on new material to follow up on The Roots of Innocence, the album that they released this year with long-time collaborator Yang Haisong of PK14 handling production.

FAZI is in Beijing tonight (Friday, November 4) for a show they’ve put on with fellow Xi’an post-punk band The Fallacy, as well as Hiperson and Stolen, two of Chengdu’s hottest young indie bands. Ahead of that, I asked vocalist Liu Peng and bassist Jia Xuan about their epic tour and what they have in store for us tomorrow at Yugong Yishan.

pangbianr: You recently finished what I think is the longest local tour ever done by a Chinese indie band. How did it feel when you finally returned home?

FAZI: A month after tour finished, we finally adapted to normal life. Though we spent so much time and energy on this tour, everything was worth it, we really enjoyed the process. We realized early on that we needed to get enough sleep in order to make sure that we wouldn’t develop any health problems over the long run. That intensive tour schedule was something that we requested, because we’d never done such a long road tour where we’re driving from city to city. It was exhausting.

pbr: You did ad hoc recordings in five cities on the tour. What will you do with these tracks?

FAZI: We recorded in Xi’an, Taipei, Xiamen, Wuhan, and Dalian. They’re all new songs, some are improvised jams. We recorded 15 songs total in these five cities, we’ll choose some of them to put out a new full-length album next year. We wanted to add this recording schedule on top of the tour because we thought it would be a good challenge for us as a band, and exciting as well. Compulsive creation should always be at the core of the band.

pbr: Yang Haisong produced your latest record and traveled with you on much of the album release tour. How has he mentored you as a band?

FAZI: We’ve collaborated with Yang on three albums and one vinyl EP. We’re really familiar with each other at this point, and we really love his work as a producer. He’s rigorous and efficient. The biggest impact he’s had on us is helping us maintain our own state of mind when making music, and helping us understand what we want as we mature as musicians.

pbr: You visited some cities that not many indie bands visit on tour. What was your show like in Lhasa, for example?

FAZI: The Lhasa show went smoothly, we weren’t that worried about the altitude or anything, we just made sure to get enough rest before that show. Our hotel was right next to the Potala Palace, seeing the burning red clouds at sunset through out hotel window gave us a sense of awe and fear. We didn’t spend much time in Tibet, but we did go to Pagang Kong to see a sky burial. 

pbr: What about Taiwan and Hong Kong? Did you notice any differences in those places as opposed to Mainland China?

FAZI: The three shows in Taiwan were amazing, we enjoy playing in front of strangers. We made a lot of new friends, and it was nice to be able to use Facebook, haha. I did feel that we’re fortunate to be a band in Mainland China, though. The performance fees that bands get in Taiwan, including tour revenue, is very small. About Hong Kong… Jia Xuan got stopped at the border, so we had to play our two shows without a bassist. Unanticipated problems like this always come up on tour.

pbr: Were there any Chinese bands you played with or discovered on tour that you like and can share with us?

FAZI: There’s a great new shoegaze band from Beijing called Last Goodbye. We also liked a band called Wisdom Tooth.

pbr: What have you been working on since the tour ended?

FAZI: We’ve been rehearsing and writing new songs, that’s been our driving force. We recently put up two new songs on Douban: one song that we recorded during The Roots of Innocence studio session, and a cover of “Sun Blows Up Today” by the Flaming Lips.

pbr: What is your advice to a band starting out in China today?

FAZI: Don’t be too ambitious at the beginning. Slowly find your place, establish an understanding between the band members. Don’t worry too much about performances at first. Listen more, investigate more, think more.

Yugong Yishan
Admission: 120rmb
Friday, November 4
9pm start
3-2 Zhangzi Zhong Lu

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