By Josh, 2011年 3月 19日
pangbianr presents: An authoritative sampling of Beijing’s contemporary musical underground. From fuzzy, 4 on the floor rock descended from Jesus and Mary Chain, to the sparse guitars and linguistic experimentation of No Wave, to synth exercises influenced by Silver Apples and the most esoteric strains of Krautrock, to dense Velvets-esque group compositions and atonal shreds that sound like post-My War Ginn heard in a ketamine dream… these musicians respond to rock-based noise and electronic experimentation of the last several decades to create a scene that is rapidly growing, constantly changing, and distinctly Chinese.
Package design by Josh Feola, Maya Rudolph, Lulu Chow, and Michael Eddy
1. Fat City – 对谈 (conversation)
2. Hedgehog (刺猬) – 折翼 (Broken Wings)
Hedgehog is one of the biggest underground rock bands in China. Their music falls more toward the pop end of the spectrum, though their live shows are infused with Jesus and Mary Chain-style walls of feedback. This track is from a brand new demo that they’re releasing along with a new album this month. It veers into heavier and noisier territory, which makes me intrigued to hear the whole thing.
Stream a ton of Hedgehog songs and videos on their douban page (in Chinese, but self explanatory): site.douban.com/hedgehog
3. White+ – green+
Check out a video of White+ playing the Vice x Intel “Creator’s Project” last year: pangbianr.com/creators-project
4. Chuiwan (吹万) – Live @ Raying Temple
Chuiwan is a hard band to classify, but they’re definitely squarely situated within the Zoomin’ Night scene. Some of their members include Yan Yulong, who performs in a number of bands and also does solo electric violin compositions in the vein of Philip Glass and Steve Reich, and Liu Xinyu, who does minimal electronics.
This song was recorded at Raying Temple, a venue/bar/hostel/recording studio/fish hatchery located in the Tongzhou suburb of Beijing.
Stream their whole set here: Chuiwan Live @ Raying Temple, August 2010
5. Luxinpei (路新配) – 恐惧 (frightened)
This is a track off Luxinpei’s Rose Mansion tape (stream another song from the tape above). LXP is a guitar/bass duo whose name means “film soundtrack”. If I had to select a film their music would fit it would probably be something by Kenneth Anger. Learn more about Rose Mansion here: rosemansionanalog.wordpress.com
6. Golden Driver – SR2
Golden Driver started off as a three-piece but have since evolved to a synth/drums duo with one of the best drummers I have seen in Beijing. Imagine a few seconds of a free jazz improv jam looped with spooky synth effects creeping all over. This is a rough practice-room recording made on a Walkman.
7. Offset: Spectacles (憬观：像同叠) – Binary March (to Lee Chi-Leung)
This is a live recording of Offset: Spectacles from September 2010. Offets are my favorite current Beijing band, even though they emigrated from Hong Kong. They are some of the prime movers behind analog label Rose Mansion, and some of the most serious musicians I have met.
8. Birdstriking (鸟撞飞机) – 喜鹊 (magpie)
Birdstriking is a college band on the rise. Their sound is often reductively compared to stylistic forebears Carsick Cars (their lead guitarist, He Fan, now plays bass in CSC) but they have a lot more going on, and they have progressed and improved more than any band I’ve seen over my last two years in Beijing. This song is an as yet unreleased cut from their upcoming debut LP on Maybe Mars, recorded by PK14 frontman Yang Haisong.
Learn more about Birdstriking here:
~ Birdstriking videos on Noisey.com
~ Birdstriking and a Context for Creation
~ Birdstriking @ D-22, 26 August 2010 (review)
~ Birdstriking Live @ Generation 6 Showcase 六世中国演出
~ 采访：Birdstriking乐队现场演出视频 (video interview)
~ Birdstriking In the Studio 正式录制首张专辑
9. Wanderlust – TV and Film Star
Wanderlust represents the Tianjin presence within the Beijing experimental music scene. A band that started off with reverb-ridden No Wave jams, they have evolved over time to a darker, synth-based IDM trio. Pangbianr will soon release an EP by Wanderlust frontman Zuo Wei.
10. 小红与小小红 – 明天 (tomorrow)
Last but not least, 小红与小小红 (xiao hong yu xiao xiao hong, or “Little Red and Tiny Red”) is a two-person electronics and vocals group that is hard to pin down. Their instrumentation changes from performance to performance but they are always entrancing and singularly impressive. Another band featuring Zhu Wenbo, the mastermind of Zoomin’ Night.