Tuesday, June 9, 2009

More tales from China...

Posted By on Tue, Jun 9, 2009 at 11:59 AM

The acts that followed Black Tiger got better and better. Super VC was a large group; rhythm and lead guitars, bass guitar, drums and a singer who played keys. I was surprised to find that the group's music had a mellow intensity that was welcome after Black Tiger's set. Indeed, after hearing a few songs, I was reminded of Coldplay and, by the end of their set, I was sure the leader of Super VC must be a fan of Chris Martin. Super VC was more intense than Coldlpay though, as the guitars would build and the lead guitarist would tear up his guitar. It was great to see a Chinese group take a western sound and make it its own.

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The last group was Lucky Monkey and I'm not exactly sure how to describe the band's music. I guess you could call it power-pop, but that sounds cheesy. The music was anything but cheesy as it had an intensity and earnestness that kept the crowd moving. The drummer played along with a sequencer that churned out techno-esque beats, the bass player was some kind of long-haired monster and the guitarist jumped around stage wearing a T-shirt that had "Tits!" written on it.

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The vocalist yelled, screemed and thrashed about the stage and got the crowd yelling as well. I found myself yelling along even though I couldn't understand the Chinese lyrics. But, hey, it doesn't matter, yelling at a rock show is hip, no matter where in the world you are.

My friends and I met a brother and sister from Belgium who had been studying at an international school in Beijing for some time. They knew the band and invited us to the after-party which entailed packing into a tiny cafe across the street from the club. We drank Tsing-Tao beer (which tastes completely different in China) and ate skewered chicken hearts. The guys in the band were extremely cool and were as hospitable as every other Chinese person I met along the way.

Next week will be my last entry from China. I'll be checking out a famous Beijing jazz club.

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