采访:Zaza Zhang Interview

By , 2012年 1月 3日


Introducing: Share In Obstacles, a new micro-label dedicated to releasing vinyl dispatches from the China DIY diaspora. The label was founded by two musicians: on the China side, Yang Haisong, frontman of P.K.14 and impresario behind numerous domestic touring and recording operations. The other half is Chengdu-born expat-in-Paris Zaza Zhang. Zaza is well known within the Chinese underground, and has already made an impressive mark in her new home. Soon after moving abroad in 2009, she formed Eyes Behind, which completed its first China tour this past summer and more recently opened for Danish teen phenoms Iceage at a sold-out show in Paris.

At the moment, the SIO roster consists of its founders’ side projects: they have released one 7″ for Yang Haisong’s and Sun Xia’s husband-wife hazy pop duo Dear Eloise, and another by After Argument, a duo consisting of Haisong and Zaza.

The label plans to stay small and grow organically, disseminating music with strong personal meaning and building ties between the Chinese and Continental undergrounds. Read on to learn more from Zaza:

Zaza behind the drums (photo by Frederic Loeffler)

pangbianr: First for some general background: where are you from originally? How did you get involved in the Chinese music scene? When did you move to Paris and why? How did you begin Eyes Behind?

Zaza Zhang: I am originally from Sichuan, China. I first went to The Little Bar where there are always the best musical happenings since I was a teenager. I actually grew up with the local music scene in Chengdu. I started doing things for bands like P.K.14 (like being their roadie) since we knew each other years ago. I also toured with Swedish band Insurgent Kid and French band Vialka, etc.

Truth be told, I had this idea to leave for somewhere else since childhood. I do believe that some people are born out of their due place and I am one of them. I have been feeling that I am a stranger in my birthplace even until now. I guess I am the person who is born in a sense of strangeness, and this might send me further and wilder in the reach of things more permanent.

Chengdu is a big city but still, kind of boring. Realistically, life there is much cheaper than any big city in China, people can easily live a life there and be satisfied. I loved living there coz I could simply afford a life and be just satisfied with that as anyone else does in my town, feeling good or whatever, but that’s not what I want from my own life. I knew that my brains were seething with ideas and Chengdu was not the right place to make things happen coz most of people were narrow-minded. It could be a real pain to try to do something cooler.

I moved to Paris in 2009, a year after my younger brother’s death. Coz that kind of sense of strangeness became stronger than ever. Then I left for Paris due to my unrealistic romantic fantasy of this city from my teen years.

When I arrived in Paris, I had an idea to check the local music scene out coz personally music is the biggest concern of my life. And the fifth day I went to a small bar far from where I lived to see a show. That was a show of these two bands called The Feeling of Love (a French band from Metz/Strasbourg) and Movie Star Junkies (from Italy). The show was so great, I suddenly had a strong feeling that I had to make a band as soon as possible. After the show I had a short talk with the musicians, asked any suggestions for me to make a band in Paris. Then Seb, the drummer of The Feeling of Love, gave me the contact of our current guitar player coz he produced an album of her previous all-girl band. Shortly after that, we started texting each other, going out to see the experimental/noise shows together…Later that year we had our first rehearsal together and we wrote our first song during that rehearsal, we felt so excited about that and we decided to make music together.

pbr: Where did the idea for Share in Obstacles come from? What is the significance of the name?

Zaza: I’ve known Yang Haisong for ages but it’s funny coz we never made anything musical together before we started this label.

We first talked about having our own label a year ago but that was not the right time I guess.

Earlier this year P.K.14 had a mini tour in Italy and I went there to see my old friends and tried to help a little bit as their roadie. We made this decision in an instant… after a serious talk in Rome, we decided to make a duo and have our own label the same time. Musically our values are quite the same. We have the same punk/post-punk roots, we are both inspired by the Washington D.C. punk music scene and Umea punk music scene, for our huge love to those greats of indie music history who have created their local music scenes and punk communities as Ian MacKaye and Dennis Lyxzen.

The name Share In Obstacles was an idea Yang Haisong had a long time ago, this guy is really great coz he never stops thinking. I still remember that once he told me if one day he could have his own label, this must be the proper name of it. So this is pretty much like a name that I am so familiar with since long time.

And I agreed with it coz I think for people like us, we’ve chosen our own values to be in this world. We have our own pleasures, which, though different from mainstream, are not less than the pleasures of mainstream. And for us, Share In Obstacles is the best name to describe this situation.

pbr: The first official SIO release is a Dear Eloise single 7″, which is also a co-release with Genjing Records [update: also co-released by Tenzenmen in Australia]. What is the plan for the future? Is Share In Obstacles more of a label, or a distributor, or something in between?

Zaza: The upcoming schedule of Share In Obstacles is releasing the first 7″ of After Argument, the band of the co-founders and owners of this label (Yang Haisong and me). This is pretty much a label that just releases the 7″ of bands involved, like bands we’re in or bands we simply love. It takes time and energy, we will do it little by little, hope things can sort out well.

And in my opinion, Share In Obstacles is something between a label and distributor, but that’s not the most important thing. Coz for us, our main purpose is more about disseminating the music we love and we make, on our own and in our own way.

pbr: The SIO soundcloud page has two songs by After Argument at the moment. Are there plans to release more material from this band? Any plans to continue the band, maybe through email collaborations since you are in Paris and Yang Haisong is in Beijing?

Zaza: Yes our first 7″ has been released. These 3 tracks were written, recorded and mixed when I was in China after my French band Eyes Behind’s tour this summer. I stayed in Beijing for a while just for doing this. For After Argument, we actually don’t like collaborating on the Internet, that’s not our working habit. We much prefer to play together in person to see what’s going on and discuss what we should do. So I do think in the future it will be the same, like every year we try to meet each other at least once or twice to write songs and record them. We’re gonna schedule the tour thing as soon as we have enough songs to play.

pbr: It seems that one of the most important elements of SIO is the fact that you are able to disseminate underground music in Europe. In your opinion, is there much of an awareness of or interest in China over there?

Zaza: The awareness of China is far away not enough in Europe, especially those things about indie music in China. When people talk about Asian music, the first thing flashing into their minds is always Japanese experimental stuff. From my point of view, powerful culture is a factor, but obviously Japanese people are really good at experimental/noise music and they already have some history of this, which though not long compared with the whole music history, is longer than Chinese indie music history.

As the only Chinese face who has been active in French indie music scene, the dissemination of Chinese music could be a little bit easier. You know, being ethnic could be helpful in some way.

Recently my French band Eyes Behind has played with a very good Danish punk band Iceage, I was so glad coz I was asked a lot about Chinese music scene, and I was totally amazed when the singer Elias talked about D-22 and stuff.

I think our love for music is what makes us dynamic with Share In Obstacles, at least, we can do something about it.

Follow Share In Obstacles on Soundcloud and Facebook for streams, updates and ordering information.

Share In Obstacles(分享障碍), 是由两位音乐人成立的专注于黑胶唱片的微型厂牌,他们分别是来自音乐制作人及P.K.14乐队主唱杨海崧和出生于成都现移居巴黎的Zaza. Zaza在内地下音乐也是众人所熟知的,然而现在在她移居巴黎后也已给人们带来了新的音乐想法。2009年她移居海外不久便组建了一支三人Art-Punk乐队Eyes Behind. 同时,去年夏天进行了第一次全中国巡演,最近乐队也在巴黎为丹麦的年轻乐队Iceage作暖场嘉宾。

目前,SIO (分享障碍) 厂牌成员有杨海菘与他爱人孙霞组建的梦幻流行乐队Dear Eloise, 且已经发行了一张7寸唱片,另外还有一支是After Argument, 便正是由厂牌创立者海崧和Zaza发起的一支乐队。


photo by Frederic Loeffler

旁边儿:首先给我们介绍一下有关你的背景,你起初来自哪里?是如何涉及到中国音乐场景?什么时候搬到巴黎以及关于你的乐队Eyes Behind.

Zaza:我来自中国四川,在我十来岁的时候我经常去当地的小酒馆酒吧看现场演出,有很多出色的音乐人和乐队在那表演。实际上我最早接触中国的音乐就是从成都开始的。我当时为乐队P.K.14做一些工作(类似于巡演经纪之类的),我们多年前就互相认识了。同时我也负责过瑞典的Insurgent Kid和法国的Vialka等乐队的巡演工作。




刚到巴黎我就想去接触当地的音乐,毕竟音乐对我来说是我生活中最重要,我个人最关心的东西。第五天我去了一个离我当时住的地方比较远的小酒吧看演出,当时有两个乐队演出,分别是法国(梅茨和斯特拉斯堡)的乐队The Feeling of Love与意大利的Movie Star Junkies。他们的现场非常好,我当时就有非常强的冲动想要想尽快做一个自己的乐队。演出完之后我跟乐队成员简单聊了会,关于在巴黎组建乐队的建议,然后The Feeling of Love乐队鼓手Seb给了我现在乐队吉他手的联系方式,他制作过我们现在吉他手上一个全女孩乐队的一张专辑。之后我们互相开始联络,一起去看一些实验噪音乐音乐演出。到年底的时候我们开始了第一次排练当时就写了第一首歌,我们很兴奋,决定要做这个乐队。



2011年初P.K.14乐队在意大利有一个小巡演,我去看看老朋友,也想他们的巡演帮点忙。那会儿我们几乎是立刻决定了这件事,在罗马我们比较严肃的讨论了一次,同时决定我们一起做一个两人的乐队和我们自己的厂牌。在音乐方面我们价值观很一致,同样的朋克/后朋音乐根源,深受华盛顿D.C.和瑞典于默奥的朋克音乐影响,我们共同特别喜欢在独立音乐历史上,为创造他们本地的独立音乐场景和朋克社区做出过贡献的那些音乐人,比如Ian MacKaye(Fugazi, 美国华盛顿)与Dennis Lyxzen(国际噪音阴谋乐队, 瑞典)。

关于厂牌名字Share In Obstacles(分享障碍)是来自海崧很早的一个想法,他真的很棒,从来没有停止思考。我记得有一次他告诉我假如有一天有自己的厂牌,那肯定会是这个名字,所以这个名字对我来说并不陌生。


旁边儿:分享障碍 (SIO)发行的首张唱片是Dear Eloise乐队的一张7寸单曲黑胶,根茎唱片(Genjing Records)也以同样的方式发行了这张单曲,在未来会有什么计划?SIO更像一个厂牌或是发行商,抑或间于两者之间?

Zaza:接下来SIO正打算发行After Argument乐队的7寸黑胶,这是厂牌共同创立人(我和海崧)发起的乐队的首张唱片,像我们自己的乐队还有一些我们所喜爱的乐队,事实上有很多单只是发行7寸黑胶的厂牌。这需要花费时间和精力,我们会慢慢做,希望我们都可以把它们处理好。


旁边儿SIO的Soundcloud页面有两首After Argument乐队的作品,还会有更多该乐队的计划吗?或许你们之间通过邮件的方式有更多的合作?

Zaza:没错,我们首张7寸单曲已经发布了,我们写了三首歌曲,并且所有的录音和混音工作都是于2011年夏天在中国结束我的法国乐队Eyes Behind巡演后所完成的。为此我在北京呆了一段时间。对于乐队After Argument我们其实不太喜欢网络的方式进行沟通合作,那不是我们的工作习惯,我们更乐于一起演奏并且可以讨论该怎么样可以做的更好。所以在将来我们也会以同样的方式来做。每年我们大概至少见一两次面,然后一起写歌,录音。在有足够曲目时我们会考虑巡演。




最近我的法国乐队Eyes Behind与一个非常好的丹麦的朋克乐队Iceage同台演出,当我被问到有关中国音乐的时候我特别开心,他们乐队主唱Elias谈到了D-22酒吧, 我真的特别吃惊。之所以我们有动力去做SIO厂牌的相关事宜,我想是因为我们都热爱音乐,至少,我们能为此做点什么。

Share In Obstacles(分享障碍)厂牌音乐在线和社交站点: Soundcloud, Facebook

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