The Sound of Beijing

 Note: Apologies for the large gap in posts. I’ve been suffering some post-New Year’s laziness and now I’ve come down with an eye infection which has slowed me down a bit. I hope to post more frequently starting next week.

I’ve been listening to a lot of Chinese underground rock music lately — mostly Beijing punk and underground rock. Hang on the Box, Carsick Cars, Snapline. And I noticed one thing. The bands’music sounds more raw live than it does on record. In fact, the bands sound like pop bands on CD. Still good but not that raw punk attitude.

Check out any artists Modernsky and Maybe Mars Records and let me know if you agree.

Beijing is a capital but it’s also a working-class city and I think the rock music of the city should reflect that both live and recorded. The band shouldn’t sound raw live but like poppy flowery mush on a record. There is enough of that in Shanghai. Much of old Beijing is being destroyed and being replaced with modern glass skyscrapers like Shanghai and I wonder if that is changing the sound of the music from great raw sounding rock to more commercial and less cutting edge pop music.

I hope not.

J.

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