Interview – Sino Hearts, from Vienna to China.

Hi Sino Hearts Can you introduce yourselves and your music, what’s new since the last time you played a « Beijing Underground » event ?

I think last year we played at Yue Space


Where did your name Sino Heart come from ?  I think I didn’t ask last time….

I wanted to have a name which related to something chinese for an european group.because we were a viennese band before.


What’s your favorite music to listen to these days ? What was your favorite album in 2018 so far ?

Recently I bought lots of records,including some compilations of us 60s lost garage/beat bands and my favourite album so far is <Evil Spirits> by The Damned

最近买了不少六十年代美国车库音乐的唱片,没人听那种。今年最喜欢的是THE DAMNED的新专辑<Evil Spirits>

Are you planning to record an album in 2018 with any of your musical projects ?

We finished our full length album<Leave the World Behind>on Jan and it was recorded in Beijing and produced in Germany,recently it will be released via Monster Zero Records/Bigmic Records in Europe,via Waterslide Records/Target Earth Records in Japan,via RubyEyes Records/D.O.G in PR.C

今年我们将在欧洲日本和中国一起推出我们的新专辑《把世界抛在脑后》,欧洲LP将由Monster Zero Records/Bigmic Records 联合发行,日本版CD将有 Waterslide Records/Target Earth Records 中国大陆将有D.O.G发行

Zhong Wuli, you stayed a while in Austria, I saw a video of you playing somewhere in Vienna a few years ago, what was it like to play rock n’roll as someone from mainland China in that environment ? What di you like/dislike about the experience ?

Well I’m straight from austrian punk rock scene and I went there when I was teenager and started music career with Frankenstyle(77 punk band from vienna) at the beginning,but somehow I’m mandarin native speaker too,so we did a china tour in 2011 crossed 18 cities and It’s the first time for us to really getting involved to chinese music scene.

I’m never selling those Chinese Identities to European because the real audience won’t buy it anyway,the real deal is how good your music is.Through speaking fluent german and viennese,my european friends normally won’t relate me to mainland china.Being asian face in europe music scene is very dope ,cuz you are the only one.haha

The experience I like about european scene is their cultural tradition,I have number of elder friends who were the first wave of 60s garage or 77 punk movements in the uk,germany,austria and our generation isn’t like much different than them.You could dig everthing on your own and every genre of music has its own system which never exists in china so far.china is everything just chaotic.

What I dislike europe is the media,what they report are always very negative about china and being chinese abroad is so awkward all the time,but I totally understood it too,cuz the real social conflicts don’t exist so brutally in the countries like austria or switzerland.


The interesting fact is that there are lots of very young audience when you play in beijing,there is fresh energy amoung them.In europe,the audience sometimes could be elder,but normally the european audience really understood the music background and much easier to communicate with.

The Passion and Wildness at rock shows is the same thing,I don’t see much different between china and any other countries.


What’s your favorite Chinese band/artist/song  you would like to introduce to the rest of the world ?

Cosmic Project is a chinese group I recently dig and musically they are quite bizarr but creative.

最近发现了Cosmic Project,很不错,很有想法的乐队,看了他们西雅图KEXP电台的录像感觉很东方。


Interview – Nocturnes 曳取, Making lines and codes in China.

Hi Nocturnes, can you introduce yourselves and your music?

Hey, we’re Nocturnes曳取, an Indie-Electronic band based in Beijing. Weidu sings and Dave plays some instruments. We’re really interested in the idea of combining live music with a more electronic DJ-like setup, bringing a more performative element to electronic pop music. If you like Coldplay, Bonobo or Foals then you’ll probably see elements of those bands in our work. In Beijing, we’re probably most similar to Nova Heart or Da Bang’s newer material.

Nocturnes曳取是一支来自中国北京的独立电子乐队,乐队有两名成员:萎度,主唱/作曲/作词;大卫,吉他/编曲/制作。他们的音乐动情迷人,氛围感和沉浸感极强,将现场音乐和DJ set融合在一起,乐迷认为兼顾了Foals的情怀力道,Bonobo的灵动迷幻,以及Coldplay的流行张力。

Why is your band called Nocturnes? How did you two meet?

Dave: I came to China in 2015, and had a short-lived band called Palaces that broke up soon after I arrived. I needed to find someone to work with, but I had grown a little jaded of playing in bands and wanted to take a more commanding role with music in terms of instrumentation. Vocals were a weak point of mine so I posted an ad on to find a singer. I had tons of replies, despite how terrible my Chinese was at that time, but one voice in particular stood out, Weidu’s. While everyone else was striving to have that high Mandopop style voice, Weidu had her own very unique tone. She had never written a song at that point, but I still knew she was the one I needed to work with.


People talked to me about your band and I listened to your album on bandcamp and liked it, what is the album about? Can you tell us more about it?

Dave: Our album is called Lines Written in Code, our debut LP. We spent a super long time on this, really trying to make everything consistent, and to give the album its own distinct sonic signature. Having a cohesive set of songs was very important to us, and we were still making changes up to the very last minute. In fact, one of our favorites on the record, Free Falling, was added about a month after everything else was finished and sent for mastering. I just knew it was the perfect addition to the album.

大卫:这张专辑叫做《密眸》,是我们的第一张正式专辑。我们花了很多心思在上面,想要为大家呈现一个属于曳取,有辨识度,同时调性又非常统一的整体声音感觉。专辑中我们最喜欢的一首歌是Free Falling《自由落体》,这首歌是最后一刻加入专辑的,当时直觉告诉我它属于这张专辑。

Weidu: I’d like to say I’m very proud of this album. It’s our first LP that we dedicated so much, maybe over one and a half years? Every time I listened to it, I was trying to think about where we were and what we were doing at that time when that song was born, haha. Lyrically, the whole album, I mean every song delivers a specific thought of mine, what I’ve been thru, and what I’ve learned from that experience. So yeah, it’s like a secret message for every song, such a valuable gift from last year, something to remember when I get old, haha.


What’s your favorite music to listen to? What was your favorite album in 2018 so far ?

Dave: I listen to quite a wide range of music, so picking a favorite album is pretty hard. In terms of Chinese releases, I’m a big fan of Hiperson’s new album. They recorded the whole thing on an 8-track apparently, and it just gives it this really cool, punk aesthetic. As a producer, I am incredibly guilty of listening to cheesy mainstream music and taking it apart to study and learn from. In that regard, Charlie Puth’s VoiceNotes, which just came out, is amazing. It has this really cool throwback R&B sound and it gives his music this nice edge versus his first album, which was way too sickly sweet for me.

Listen to the album here.

大卫:我听得挺杂的,所以选一首最爱的专辑太难了。中文的话,海朋森的新专挺好听的。8首歌一气呵成的感觉,有朋克的真和美在里面。但作为一个制作人来讲,我不得不承认自己很喜欢听主流的,甚至被认为很俗的流行歌,比如Charlie Puth新出的VoiceNotes就很好听,我觉得比起他的第一张专辑来说,这一张偏复古的R&B感觉很酷很潮。

Weidu: I don’t have a specific genre to listen to, usually I just browsing personal recommendation song list from, that could range from electronic music, to indie rock, to rap, maybe. Personally, I think the album, I, from WAV, it’s Canadian indie band, really stands out.


Are you planning to record an album in 2018?

Dave: We just released our album in December, and I think the process aged me about 10 years, so we’d like to take a break from albums for a bit! That being said, we’re always writing songs, and we’re putting the finishing touches at the moment to a new single, and a new EP. I’m pretty excited about this new EP, it’s a lot groovier (not in the Austin Powers sense) than our album, probably inflected a bit from Charlie Puth’s album like I mentioned earlier. My partner refers to the new single – called Any Kind of Mood – as the perfect soundtrack to a Kung Fu movie, so if Jet Li happens to be reading this, get in touch.

大卫:刚在去年12月发了专辑,感觉老了十年,想缓缓。但其实我们一直都在写新歌,为每首歌找到属于它们的位置。下一张EP我很期待,会更groovy一些(这个单词无法翻译哈哈),估计是受到了Charlie Puth的影响。我女朋友说我们的下一首歌Any Kind of Mood《私人情绪》,简直是功夫片的绝佳配乐。所以李连杰先生,如果您看到这篇文章了,和我们联络一下,谢谢您!

Weidu: We’ll release a new single in this July, and a new EP next year. The new single is called Any Kind of Mood, probably the best lyrics coming out from me, a lot of fans like it when we test play it live, during the tour. And for the EP, we really tried to put in the groovy songs that are different than the previous album, so I’m really looking forward to it.

萎度:我们会在7月发一首新单,在明年发新的EP。新单叫做Any Kind of Mood《私人情绪》,恨不得是我写过最满意的词了吧,哈哈。在巡演和很多现场试着演了一下,很多人喜欢。对于下一张EP来说,我们尽可能把手上最优质的作品放在一起,所以我满怀期待。

How did you start music and why? Which instrument did you start on?

Dave: I got into music a little late, picking up the guitar at 16, and heading to music college completely unprepared at 18. For me, it was the only thing I never got bored of. I tend to flit from thing to thing pretty quickly, but music has captivated me from the start. I realized soon after I began that I was never going to be the most technical, so since then I’ve tried to pursue individuality in sound instead. I started with guitar, which is still the only instrument I really consider myself any way proficient in. I took up piano a couple of years later. This year marks 10 years since I picked up an instrument in fact. I’m not sure I would ever have imagined myself playing this kind of music on the other side of the world 10 years ago!


What’s your favorite thing about playing music in Beijing, how does it compare to other countries in the world?

Dave: Beijing is unlike anywhere else in the world for music. Back home in Ireland, music so often is in the background, a complement to a night of drinking, instead of the main focus. Here, people are so much more willing to give their attention to bands, even completely new ones. I’ve been at school bar where new, objectively terrible, bands have taken to the stage, and people still give them their time. That was the case with us 2 years ago, when we were super super shit, and it’s something I still hold dear to me now. China has the best music audiences in the world.


What’s your favorite Chinese band/artist/song you would like to introduce to the rest of the world?

Dave: I truly believe the stage is set for the first Chinese bands to become globally famous in the near future, especially with the achievements of bands like Re-tros recently. I think the most accessible bands for foreign audiences would be Nova Heart, Future Orients and Glow Curve, and I’m endlessly badgering my friends back home to listen to all three. One of the reasons we hope to be more successful in the future is to shine a light on the great scene here. China often has this perception of not being cool, and that’s something we’d really like to break.

大卫:我认为第一批成功的中国乐队,会在国际舞台上越来越耀眼。就国际化程度来说,重塑雕像的权利,Nova HeartFuture Orients,发光曲线都是非常厉害的。我不停地向自己家里的朋友推荐这些优秀的乐队,让他们知道,中国,真的很酷啊。

Anything you want to add?

Dave: We’re really looking forward to playing with Swarrm on the 20th! It’s been quite a while since we’ve been in Temple, and we’re looking forward to getting back there.



Swarrm, progressive rock with a twist ?

Around  one month ago, Djang San asked me if Subtropical Asia would like to be involved in the Beijing Underground  music days that he is organizing. His suggestion was that we presented a band that we like and make an interview. Among all the bands from all the labels in China I felt a band that deserved some recognition and exposure is SWARRM. SWARRM is a band that looks and sound so experienced that every time I see them around small underground venues in Beijing such as Temple and School I ask myself: “why are these guys playing here?” I mean, their sounds may be too heavy for most of the people and they for sure don’t have the fresh young attitude in sound and looks to strike young kids in a search for a band to be devoted to. No! SWARRM is mature, dark, moody, violent and decadent. A power trio that fusions heavy rock with a touch of progressive and noise.

I had a very short and direct chat with GAOXIAFENG, the charming guitarist/aggressive riff machine of the band to know more about him and the band, here it goes:

First, can you introduce yourself? Name, age, born & raised place?

“My name is Gao Xiao Fang 38 years old I was born and grew up in Beijing”

how long have you been playing music?

“I have been playing music for 18 years”

and how long has SWARRM been together?

“SWARRM was founded about 1 year ago”

Are u married? do you have kids?

“I got married, I have two kids”

Why do you use makeup? It looks gorgeous! but are there any other special reason beyond looking fabulous?

” I love make up since I was 20 years old, first make-up was a hobby for me, not that I want to express anything else I think”

What does the name SWARRM mean ?

“SWARRM means SWARRM of worms”

As I am a musician I know that you guys are highly skilled and experienced artists, so what brings you guys to play in small bars and venues? Are you doing this for fun?

“We’re not very picky about where we’re going to play”

Any plans for recording and tours?

“We are going to have some singles and tours this year. When ? Im not sure”

Cool! Thanks for you time.

“You are very welcome”

Listen to Swarrm here:



Interview – Li Er Yang, breaking through.

Hi Li Er Yang, I believe you have participated in Beijing Underground events before, what’s new since the last time we met ?


I’m still growing and breaking through.

What’s your favorite music to listen to? What was your favorite album in 2018 so far ?

我喜欢能给我突破的音乐,探索神秘,富有灵魂。这是一种直觉,无关音乐风格。最喜欢的 2018 年唱片?可能还没有。

I like the music which can give me a breakthrough, exploring the mystery, full of soul. It’s intuitive, not about music style. Favorite 2018 album? Probably not have yet.


Are you planning to record an album in 2018? do you have a demo or album already released?


Yes, I am recording. There are some old demos on Netease cloud music that can be heard.

How did you start music and why? Which instrument did you start on?


I felt that something was leading me, that I was pursuing my passion. I started with the guitar

Do you have any other projects now than your solo project ?


I’m going to start a  band project. I’m working with a percussion player.

Anyting you want to add ?


Come and see something.

Hear some of Li Er Yang’s music here, he will be playing at the Beijing Underground Music Days, Music Week at Temple Bar on the 19 of June 2018, don’t miss this !

Strike on the South Wall

What does your band name mean and how did you choose it to represent your music?

We were looking for a name that could represent our music and attitude. My proposal was “Sewer Rats”, but fortunately our guitarist came up with 撞南墙, which roughly translates to “Strike on the south wall”. The name comes from a Chinese saying: One does not come back until he/she has destroyed the south wall. The south wall is imaginary and the whole idiom means to be extremely stubborn, not listening to any critique or advice.

How would you describe your sound in non-musical terms?

We would like to see the scene become tighter, with strong bonds among bands and mutual support, also with new bands and artists. We are tired of seeing bands that get to the venue, play their show and leave straight away without a care about the other artists with whom they’re sharing the stage .

What is something the audience might not realize about your band at first glance?

The audience might not realize that we are actually quite into politics and social issues.

What are some bands you think The Beijing underground music scene should follow more closely ?

We are biased on this. Being ours an emerging band, we believe that the scene should give more attention to emerging bands and encourage them to continue playing music and getting better.

Where would you like to see the Beijing music scene go in the next few years? What would you like to see more or less of in the Beijing underground music scene?

Our sound is rough and strident, not much for its heaviness but mostly because of the amount of mistakes we make while playing. Vocals are a mixture of nails on a blackboard, stepping on a lego and kicking your nightstand with your little toe.

DFA 89

What does your band name mean and how did you choose it to represent your music?

DFA89 means Death From Abba Eight Nine. Just kidding, really it means Def Funk Abdul Eightynine. Only joking, it means Don’t Fuck Around, Eight-Nine. No, but seriously now, it means Deus Fidelis Anus VIII IX. Just joking, it really means…

How would you describe your sound in non-musical terms?

Rolling down the side of a mountain in an MRI machine.

What is something the audience might not realize about your band at first glance?

We’re not naked under our robes. Our cello player actually knows what he’s doing. We rehearse.

What are some bands you think The Beijing underground music scene should follow more closely?

Liberate Haze. Hugh Reed. Electric Lady.

Where would you like to see the Beijing music scene go in the next few years? What would you like to see more or less of in the Beijing underground music scene?

I’d like to see it go on quite a mundane caravan holiday to Dorset, buy some over priced fudge, get in an argument over which radio station to listen to, and then not talk to itself the whole way home. I would like to see more stoats and less lamas please.

DJ Boss Cuts

What does your band name mean and how did you choose it to represent your music?

For my previous Winter Days interview I revealed that it was channelled from my spirit guide after drinking ayahuasca.

How would you describe your sound in non-musical terms?

Earlier this year I travelled to Nashville and Memphis and discovered that deep-fried food is more popular than Jesus. One night in Memphis I had Skillet-Fried Pie: First take an iron skillet then dig out some chunks of butter and heat it up until it forms a deep pool of saturated fattiness. Then grab a wedge of pecan pie and fry it up until it gets crispy. Finish it off by dumping half a tub of ice cream on top and serve.

What is something the audience might not realize about your band at first glance?

For the Boss Cuts band – that its members cover every continent except South America. We are on the look out for someone who do capoeira. As for DJing – that I am spending my retirement fund on records. If in the future you see a guy on the street sleeping on a pile of records slap him and then buy him a jianbingguozi.

What are some bands you think The Beijing underground music scene should follow more closely?

A couple of years ago I went to Fuji Rock in Japan and wondered why the bands don’t come to China. I asked Freddy (drummer for Boss Cuts and Oldy Baby) and Han Ning who runs Painkiller and they said that there isn’t yet a critical mass in China. Sure there are 1.35 billion people here but only a minuscule number go out to see live music. A couple of months ago Ernesto Chahoud and JJ Whitefield from Poets of Rhythm DJed at Dada and the turn out was underwhelming. JJ almost singlehandedly brought about the whole funk/soul revival in the 90s and 2000s and yet the dancefloor was mostly empty. Freddy’s other theory is that people aren’t willing to spend money on things they don’t know. So go out and see bands you’ve never heard of and give them some money.

Where would you like to see the Beijing music scene go in the next few years?

More rockabilly, surf, garage, and psych. These styles are really popular in the US, Australia, and Europe. Bands like Guantanamo Baywatch, Shannon and the Clams, Kid Congo and the Pink Monkey Birds, Black Angels are constantly touring but unfortunately it is unlikely that they would come to Beijing. When I started Boss Cuts I had no idea whether people would like it or not. Same with DJing. Some nights it works, other nights it bombs. One night at School a very drunk Natharb said to me “Boss Cuts was never meant to happen”. I took that as a compliment. Doing something different is risky but why be a lemming.

What would you like to see more or less of in the Beijing underground music scene?

I’d like to see fewer foreigners doing cover music. My China rule is ‘Would I Do This at Home?’

 Scare the Children – The interview.

Hi Scare the Children, can you introduce yourselves  ?

We are a 4-piece metal band from Beijing, China, formed in 2014. Our performances lean towards the theatrical, with costumes and stage decor borrowing from horror themes. We try as best as we can to set a certain mood not only through the music, but also through visuals and ambiance.

All of your concerts have you dressed as monsters, what is the meaning of each monster if there is one  ?

The costumes are actually supposed to be of haunted dolls. We each chose the individual concepts, but they all drew inspiration from either urban legends or horror films.

Why did you want to start such a band dressed as monsters  ?

The idea of dressing up came very naturally once we agreed on what the themes of the songs would be. It was decided early on that the song lyrics would revolve around horror stories, and we figured haunted dolls could be an interesting concept for the first album. However, the idea of four grown men singing about dolls and trying to be scary seemed a little silly, but if we went all the way and really pushed the concept on multiple levels, it could work. Hence the costumes and decor.

You recently went to Japan and toured also with ögenix, another metal band from Beijing, how did it feel to play there  ? How was the audience  ?

Japan and China are two opposites in many ways. In regard to gigs, well, Japan runs at 150% efficiency at all times. For example, soundchecks are quickly done and the sound is always perfection, every show also starts on time and ends on time. In China things are usually a little messier and less organized. However, being less organized is not always a bad thing, especially when it comes to crowds. In Japan people are very respectful and seem to enjoy the show in a more reserved way, while here crowds tend to be more animated and wild, which helps us gauge our performance and react accordingly during the show.

Another thing we noticed very quickly over there was that we would have our work cut-out for us, since Japanese bands are just as professional as the sound engineers – they take their craft very seriously and everything they do, from their sound to their visuals, is always on point…these guys don’t mess around and the level of talent is through the roof.

All that being said, the tour was great and people responded very positively to what we were doing. We also made some good friends, with whom we hope to, perhaps, co-operate on future projects down the road.

I heard you have released a demo album this year, where can we listen to it/buy it  ?
Will you release an album in 2018, what are your plans regarding the new release  ?

We have some of our demo songs online, which you can listen to for free. You can check it out at: We also have a CD out, which we unofficially released in order to have it ready before our Japan tour. But we are currently tweaking a bit on some of the songs as well as the art work for a proper release, which should happen pretty soon. The CD that is currently available is not for wide-distribution, but if you come to the shows, we’ll probably have a few copies there.

What are your thoughts about the Chinese metal bands and do you think there is a place for more foreign metal bands in China  ?

As with all music genres in China (and elsewhere, for that matter), you have to dig a bit before you find that one band that really stands out, but they are certainly there. There’s a lot of talent and creativity in the scene, and more and more bands are starting to think outside the box, blending different styles to try to come up with something new.

As for foreign metal bands, it’s hard to tell. Being a foreigner in a band in China can open some doors, but also close others. Some promoters may want to book you just because your band has foreign members, but when it comes down to true recognition, the local scene tends to prioritize local musicians, which is understandable and even commendable, but can be frustrating for some of us who’ve worked just as hard as our local counterparts. Anyway, making music (especially in the field of Rock) was never supposed to be easy. What it boils down to, is that if you work hard and do your homework there is room to make your own action happen, regardless of where you come from.

What was the best show you did and why was it the best show  ?

That’s a pretty impossible question to answer. In all honesty, it would be easier to talk about a “worst” show, since there are so few gigs that we would qualify as bad. On the other hand, a show can be great for so many different reasons, and there’s always something awesome to draw from each and everyone of them. We’ve enjoyed playing big festival stages in front of thousands – there’s something incredibly thrilling about having a huge amount of people go completely mental and respond in unison to every move you make on stage. But we also love playing smaller venues where we are face-to-face with the crowd. The intensity of the close interaction with the audience on smaller stages can make a show so much fun and wild. Other factors that affect how we feel about shows include whether or not there were technical difficulties, if we managed to play through the whole gig without anyone fucking up once (which probably has yet to happen…), and even just the overall vibe between all people involved.

Basically, there are so many separate factors that can make a show great, that is really hard to pick ONE best show. I’m not sure there’s ever been a gig we played where everything was flawless, but that’s what makes this whole thing so exciting, that’s what makes every show different and unique. Rock ‘n’ Roll has always been about the danger in not knowing what you’re gonna get each night.

Having said all that, we can probably tell you about some of our favorite venues and festivals we’ve played. Temple Livehouse in Beijing has always been home for us and every show we’ve played there was excellent. It’s counterpart in Shanghai, the Inferno, is another great venue (which unfortunately is closing its stage now and seems will no longer be a live music venue). As for festivals, we’ve played Midi several times and those were amazing – awesome organization, great team, huge crowds; and we’ve also just done playing our second Rootfest, which is run by Modern Sky and has some of China’s biggest names in metal as its line-up, and that’s always a big honor for us. Also worth mentioning is Vigor, as a stellar promoter of straight-up killer Rock shows throughout Beijing. We’ve definitely had some unforgettable gigs organized by these guys.

Is there any music you want to share  ? (not necessarily yours).

Sure. We got some local bands we all really enjoy, not only in the metal scene.

Los Crasher is an old school Hard Rock band from Beijing that we like a lot. They’ve just come back from a 3-month tour of China, and they are as tight as ever. They finished this tour by playing a gig in Beijing at Yugongyishan for over 2 hours. In fact, Antoine (our keyboard player) was an invited guest on stage that night. Was great.

We also go way back with Never Before, which is a Stoner Metal band who’s been around for a while and got a real gritty, bad-ass sound with some awesome grooves and hell of catchy riffs.

Gotta mention Silent Elegy as well, a Metal band we’ve played a few gigs with, who has the most incredible female singer with an Opera soprano type of voice, pretty damn impressive.

More recently we’ve really been into Alpaca, a stoner band from Shanghai. Amazing musicians all, and their singer’s got a voice that is both melodic and rough as a rusty nail, real unique and fucking beautiful.

We’ve also been digging Struggle Session (Hard Core) who has, arguably, the most intense, no holds-barred show in town. Watching these guys play is always fascinating and an incredibly interactive experience, to say the least.

Of course, we must mention Ogenix too, which is an Industrial Metal quintet that have close affiliations with our own band, since some of our guys also play in that band. But, regardless of that, we can still say with honesty that they put on a 100% energy-fueled show definitely worth checking out. Gabriel, the singer, does a great job as a frontman, always engaging the crowd like a master.

And then there are the more obvious ones, those bands that have been in the scene forever, but are still on top of their game, such as Yaksa (metal), WHAI (alternative/experimental rock), Nine Treasures (Metal) and so on. They are real pros and always put on one helluva show wherever they play.

Anything you want to add  ?

Come check out Scare the Children and Ogenix play Temple this 19th of January. It’s going to be our first show since we came back from our Japan tour and should be an amazing show !

Tydi Knots 

A few questions with Tydi Knots, a band that will play the “Punk Night” at School Bar for The Beijing Underground Sweet Winter Music Days on the 18 of January.


Hi Tydi Knots, who are you? Can you introduce yourself to our readers?

We are Tydi Knots, we are a Beijing band.

Where do you come from and why are you in Beijing?

We are both from Sunny South Africa, we have been friends for nearly 10 years now. We initially started off as friends and band mates early 2009. We used to play thrash metal. Tyron was the lead man, and I the drummer. After we graduated from university both Tyron and I moved to Korea, where we started Pan Valley (2016). It was mostly an experimental/acoustic duo. We have been in Beijing for 9 months, give or take.  In the past 9 months we have evolved and changed rapidly.

I have noticed you playing gigs around Beijing, as you are a new band around here, what is your feeling so far about the scene, what bands have caught your attention?

Tyron: The scene is amazing! I can’t get enough of it and really want to be a part of it as much as we can. I have seen a big rise in Post Rock/ ambient kind of bands lately, I guess its currently a trend but there are really some amazing and exciting acts around. Xiao Wang is really an energetic band which I like a lot. We also enjoy Acid Accident, Struggle Session and Li Er Yang. Artists who are really work hard and have an amazing passion for music. The scene is very diverse which I enjoy.

Rudi: I love Beijing and its music scene. You can literary find absolutely everything here. If not some of the hardest bands or some of the most relaxing solo artists. The range of talented musicians and their music is mind-blowing! It goes for all kinds of music opportunities. I currently joined a community orchestra and a string quartet, so it really feels like Beijing is a never-ending fountain of music.

Are you planning to record an album in 2018? do you have a demo or album already released?

We are planning recording a bunch of acoustic sessions, where it would simply be cello and guitar. We will try to release those as soon as we can. Then we are planning to record a bunch of tracks in studio sometime in February.

What’s your favorite music to listen to? What was your favorite album in 2017?

Tyron: I listen everything from Rap, Electronic and Classical to Rock and Jazz. Anything really, so my list would be endless. I have always been an all rounder. If its music or makes a sound, then i’ll probably listen to it. My favorite albums of 2017 have to be Fokofpolisiekar – Selfmedikasie,  Awaken I am – Blind Love and Pvris – All We Know f Heaven, All We Need of Hell, those are the albums that I personally looked forward to before they were released. I have also been listening a lot to one of my all time favorites lately, Bad Debt by Hiss Golden Messenger.

Rudi: Ummmmm, there are so many. To mention just a few;

Gregory Alan Isakov – That Sea, the Gambler, Gregory Alan Isakov – This Empty Northern Hemisphere, Acoustic Recordings 1998–2016

Album by Jack White, Biffy Clyro, Bon Iver For Emma for Ever, Johnny Cash, Sigur Rós, Fokoffpolisiekar, Van Coke Cartel, Van Coke solo project, Alt-J, Delta Blue and later blues, Amy Whinehouse. Any classic music. Haha. I get obsessed with albums and just listen to a few at a time. I like to experience the album as much as possible.

How did you start music and why? Which instrument did you start on?

Tyron: I have always been a big music fan, started listening to Rap and pop in the 90’s. Then in high school I had this friend who would give me new music every Monday, like 15 to 20 albums every week which he would get from his brother at University and then my mind was just blown by everything I was getting, and my passion just grew from there. I tried learning the guitar many times over the years but never took it very seriously. I spent more time writing lyrics from a young age and raps haha. I kind of met Rudi by accident in 2008/2009 sometime and he threatened me into his metal band, I had the worst audition ever and I was accepted and we played a bunch of shows. While at Uni, I experimented a lot with my own music, got into producing electronic music and DJing and still played a little guitar every now and then, I started a business where we would book musicians for events which took off really well and did a good solid 5 years, also worked at 2 radio stations at this time, a studio manager at one and out on the road doing live activations across Central South Africa and then moved life on to Korea. Korea is where I really took the time to work harder at my own music. I released some electronic music at that time and also sat down and learned the guitar solidly everyday. Then Rudi and I started writing music for our Pan Valley project. And now we are in Beijing and loving it.

Rudi: I have always liked listening to music and growing up my brother and I would always go to teen dance parties. In high school a classmate and friend taught me some basics on drums. Hooked immediately I started a band, we started playing heavy metal, basically anything that sounded scary. That was the band where Tyron and I became friends and first played in together. Later on I taught myself to play guitar. Went to university to study music through a music development program that later turned into a degree. Unfortunately, I couldn’t continue my music studies as a classical guitarist and then had to choose between the flute and the cello. At this point I was 21 years old, given up a well paying full time job to put myself through university, depressed and lost, I accidentally started playing cello, not knowing what one looked like before I went to my first lesson. Now I try to sing, write music and simply play any instrument that catches my fancy.

Besides Tydi Knots, do you have any other musical projects? Can you introduce them?

Tyron: I have a solo project which I play acoustic guitar and just play some chill music, I also write electronic dance music and have another band project in the works with one of my other mates and I also play bass in a band called Bang Bang Mary with my mates.

Rudi; I played in Bang Bang Mary as the drummer for 2 years, give or take. I am passing on the torch, so to speak, to the next drummer. As I am going to spend more time on the string quartet and the community orchestra I recently joined. I will also spend more time on practicing solo cello pieces. Luckily it will be of great use for tydi knot`s acoustic set. Other projects will be Jordan Darling`s solo project. I will be assisting her recording and producing her indie folk album.

Anything you want to add?

Tyron: Yeah, thanks so much for the opportunity and interest in our music! we appreciate it a lot.

Rudi:Thank you for this opportunity. We appreciate any exposure.



Octopoulpe, the French squid from outer space.

I always meet people on tour, all kinds of people, and sometimes I meet true artists, people like Octopoulpe, a French guy living and touring in Asia whose idea of music I find really interesting. As he is touring at the moment and will soon be in China he accepted to answer the Beijing Underground questions, here are his answers. – Djang San.

1) First of all, can you introduce yourself as a musician?

My name is JP, I’m a french musician living in Seoul since about 6 years.
I came to Japan and Korea 7 years ago, on tour with one of my french bands called

“Escarres”, and I fell in love with the city and the people of Seoul! One year later I decided to come back, trying to live there. I directly met some people and I started playing in some bands, mainly as a drummer.

In 2015, I wanted to be able to tour more without waiting for my friends to get holidays, so I started working on a solo project.
That’s how I created Octopoulpe.

2) What do you think of the Beijing Underground music scene?

Can you compare it to Seoul and other Asian cities you have visited ?

Last December I played twice in Beijing, at Hot Cat then School, and I really enjoyed both shows. There were many people, very energetic and very receptive to the music the bands played those nights. I think Beijing has some great venues, not too big, not too small and the scene seems very energetic, in that way I think it’s similar to Seoul or Tokyo.
I also played in few other cities in China, and I was surprised to play most of the time in HUGE venues, which is not the best for the kind of music I play.

3) What’s your favourite music to listen to?

I’m listening to a lot of different things – mainly rock – but I can say that I’m really addicted to Punk-hardcore, Noise-rock and Math-core.

4) How long have you been doing music?

I played my first show 20 years ago! Time flies so fast…


5) What was your first instrument and why did you start playing music?

I grew up as a teenager listening to Euro-dance… Then when I was 16, we discovered the “Nirvana Unplugged in New York” album with my best friend. Both of us directly bought an acoustic guitar, and we started covering (pretty badly) some Nirvana songs.
That album is probably the most important album of my life. On that time, I think both of us wanted to be the new Kurt Cobain!

6) What are your other musical projects?

I play bass in a duo band called “Digou” with a good friend living in Wuhan. Practicing is impossible so both of us work at home exchanging emails and ideas, and we only tour (as much as we can…)
In Korea I play drums in 2 Punk-hardcore bands, one called is “MyManMike” since 2011, the other one is called “Arryam” since 2015.

On Friday September 22nd, my good friend from Wuhan and I will meet in Beijing for playing at School with Digou, Milu (his solo project) and Octopoulpe. Then we will play some other shows in Wuhan, Chengdu and Chongqing the days after. We’re both excited about that small tour in China!

Listen to Octopoulpe’s new album “Man Won” here:

Su & THE PARAMECIA Interview

1) First of all, can you introduce yourself as a musician? 请你自我介绍:

I’m a guitar player, writer. I have a band called SuZixu&The Paramecia, besides, I have a lot of music projects which are concentrate on dealing with world music and other stuff. Recently, my plan is to establish a music label, combining local and international musicians together.

2) What do you think of the Beijing Underground music scene? 你觉得北京地下音乐现在怎么样?

Fantastic! I’ve been here for a long time and made friends with many Beijing-based underground bands. We look more like families now. I’ve learned a lot from them, sometimes we compete with each other, anyway, we make Beijing a great place to create wonderful music pieces.

I think things are getting better. Live houses, bars and venues, they are in a perfect state of bloom.

3) What’s your favourite music to listen to? 你最喜欢听什么音乐和乐队?

It’s hard to tell coz I really enjoy almost every kind of music. Normally I turn random albums on in the morning and they help me to start my day. ‘Morning music’ inspires me a lot in many ways.

4) How long have you been doing music? 你做了音乐做了多长时间

I had played in several bands as a guitar player since I was 15yrs old, but I have launched my private music career since 2012. I think I made it, sort of, achieved my goals after so many years. 

5) What was your first instrument and why did you start playing 

music? 你是怎么开始做音乐的?

Oh, man, Guitar! Well, I don’t like playing with others when I was a kid, so 

I spend all my spare time with my guitar. Haha, I’m joking. I choose guitar 

just because I love it. I feel people get bored of playing the guitar because 

they are distracted by other things, but nothing could bother me by then. 

6) What are your other musical projects? 你的音乐计划是什么

Like I mentioned before, my band’s name is SuZixu&TheParamecia, I got two albums to finish and publish in this year. 

7) Any music you want to share? 有没有你想分享或者推荐的音乐 ?

A composer\pianist named Ryuichi Sakamoto(坂本龙一), he writes songs for both films and musical organisations. He’s kind of a genius in writing modern classic music. I admire him.

And at last, I should recommend two bands, The Harridans and my band Suzixu&TheParamecia of course.


1) First of all, can you introduce yourself as a musician ? 请你自我介绍 。

我叫张巍,来自宁夏银川,现在长住北京,我的乐队名字:WHAI,有为什么的意义,WHAI的音乐风格是:中国迷幻!目前有多位音乐家和艺术家参加:DJ:MICKEY ZHANG,鼓手:刘淼,李帆,贝司手:三哥(欧洋),吴翘!

My name is Zhang Wei, I am from Ningxia, but in Beijing for a long time, the name of my band is WHAI, it means of course “Why”, our style is: Chinese psychedelic ! We have had a few different members: DJ: Mickey Zhang, Drummer: Liu Miao, Li Fan, Bassist: San Ge (Ou Yang), Wu Qiao !

2) What do you think of the Beijing Underground music scene ? 你觉得北京地下音乐现在怎么样?


If you look at the Beijing Underground now with what it was in the nineties, to me it is not underground but on the ground ! it’s pure western music ! not from Beijing, not underground, these bands will become famous ! but as one of the representatives of the Beijing Underground WHAI will go on collaborate with more underground bands with an underground flavor to go on building a Chinese and Asian underground atmosphere ! Hopefully we will help people here build a more independent way of thinking and more independent tastes in order for people to see everyone has there own reasons to live, for example your parents, your schoolmates, teachers, lovers….

3) What’s your favorite music to listen to ? 你最喜欢听什么音乐和乐队?


I like it the most to listen to musicians who died young, I can’t explain it, it’s just a feeling !

4) How long have you been doing music ? What was your first instrument and why did you start playing music ? 你做了音乐做了多长时间 ?你是怎么开始做音乐的?


I have been making music for 32 years now, it’s my parents who let me start, and then i also fell in love with music, even more than they did !

5) What are your other musical projects ? 你有别的乐队吗?你的音乐计划是什么?


I don’t have any other bands, my plan these days is to relive the same day everyday, and overtime you will see that day naturally change, very naturally.

6) Any music you want to share ? 有没有你想分享或者推荐的音乐?


Of course I have, the music from WHAI’s new album, I really want to share it with everybody, and I hope people will patiently wait for it, if everything goes has planned it will come out in 2018 ! so in the meantime here is an old WHAI song: “You have to find the meaning of life in the wilderness of the iceberg to be able to forget all the joy and sadness”, please listen !

Ravi and the Puppets (or Ravi and the Shadows).

1) First of all, can you introduce yourself as a musician ? 请你自我介绍 。

薛挺 Ravi  北京人 .   我是新概念~族际音乐的先行者.  作为都市文明的访问人 多年游走世界民族的边际 向民族学习各种古老传统音乐技艺 :呼麦 潮尔吹管 口弦 马头琴 蒙古三弦(蒙古)都塔尔 (维吾尔)中东顿贝克鼓 冬不拉(哈萨克)西塔琴(印度)澳洲土著吹管Digeridoo 迪吉里度  越南独弦琴 等 目前进行首创音乐*视觉新概念演出 ~能量+融合的皮音影乐团体

My name is Xue Ting (Ravi), I’m from Beijing, I am the forerunner of a new concept in ethnic music.

As a visitor from the urban part of society, I have traveled the boundaries of the nations of the world for many years to learn all kinds of ancient traditional musical techniques: Humai (Mongolian throat singing), Chao Er from Mongolia, Sanxian (Mongolia) horsefiddle, Kouxian dutar (Uyghur) Middle East Dunbeike, drum Dongbula (Kazakhstan) Sitar (India) Aboriginal Digeridoo, Vietnamese one string instrument. I push for a new concept of music performance ~ + * visual fusion and energy mixed with a traditional Chinese Shadow Puppet show.

2) What do you think of the Beijing Underground music scene ? 你觉得北京地下音乐现在怎么样?

北京地下音乐我不了解 一个印象 很躁!

I don’t understand only one impression from the Beijing Underground. One word maybe, “Amazing !” (difficult to translate this word).

3) What’s your favorite music to listen to ? 你最喜欢听什么音乐和乐队?

我喜欢听电子 除了印象特深刻的少数歌外 不喜欢听有人唱歌词 觉得对音乐的破坏和注意力转移.

I like to listen to electronic music. Apart from some songs that give me a strong feeling, I don’t like to listen to people singing words, I feel it can disrupt the music and your attention to it.

4) How long have you been doing music ? What was your first instrument and why did you start playing music ? 你做了音乐做了多长时间 ?你是怎么开始做音乐的?

我学习和摸索音乐10多年 突然的命运转折 让我从事能量音乐 身不由己的 现在有些麻木和盲目了 现在缺少方向和动力

I’ve learned and explored music for more than ten years, my fate has changed to let me engage in the energy of music again, involuntarily , now I am a bit paralyzed and blind, I miss a direction and a force.

5) What are your other musical projects ? 你有别的乐队吗?

我除了自创的音乐+皮影的新概念演出团体外 还有一个蒙古元素的民族世界音乐7人团 承接大型商演

Apart from making my own music with Chinese traditional shadow puppets, I also have a 7 people band based on world music with Mongolian elements, we usually do big commercial gigs.

6) Any music you want to share ? 有没有你想分享或者推荐的音乐?

我推荐印度方面的传统和宝莱坞电影音乐  或那些纯粹原生态的民族古老宝典音乐 如维吾尔的木卡姆音乐 蒙古长调 ……那种深沉直接击打人心 

I would suggest traditional Indian music as well as some Bollywood music, also original and ancient treasures of ancient music like Uyghur music Mukam, Mongolian music, the kind of music that can directly get into the heart of people…

Hugh Reed and the electric Shadows

1) First of all, can you introduce yourself as a musician ? 

I jokingly call myself ,multi-talent less’ as I play a lot of instruments, not very well, mainly guitar but also bass, keyboards, harmonica etc.

I don’t even consider myself to be a fantastic singer, but I like to think of myself as a showman or entertainer. I also occasionally do stand up comedy and acting.

2) What do you think of the Beijing Underground music scene ?

I really like the Beijing scene, I used to play often in London, and as you would expect thats a big underground scene but considering the size of the population we have a small and very friendly underground scene here. Also because of so many foreigners ( like myself) in that scene, it has an added international feel to it.

3) What’s your favorite music to listen to ? 

I listen to many types of music, I suppose in many ways I’m an old punk, I met and played with some of the founders e.g. Deborah Harry (Blondie) whom I sang and toured with , Glen Matlock of the Sex Pistols, The Fall etc. I also like indie music , my UK band the Velvet Underpants supported Mogwai , Belle and Sebastion, Simple Minds and others.

I enjoy Country music,folk, techno, – I really like the Beijing scene and often go to see and listen to live music here.

4) How long have you been doing music ? What was your first instrument and why did you start playing music ?

I started playing guitar around the age of 14, I been performing in bands I guess since the age of 18, I didn’t become the front man in a band until around the age of 24, it took me a while to build up the confidence.

5) What are your other musical projects ? 

I’ve had different themed bands,in the past. Shaking Hugh and the Sideburns – a fifties style Rock n Roll band, ‘The Punk Priests’ which was a covers band, I would dress up as a Bishop and the rest of the band were Priests, ‘Danny Boy and the Derriers ‘ which was a country covers band. 

6) Any music you want to share ? 

Here’s some video links to some of my songs Wode Che        Wode Che – live in Beijing. Technodrugs  Six to One (621) NEXT

Here’s some video links to some of my songs Wode Che        Wode Che – live in Beijing. Technodrugs  Six to One (621) NEXT

7) How did you come to be in the movie Trainspotting ? 

I’ve done a bit of acting, only small parts, most famously in Trainspotting, I appeared in TV adverts and different TV, dramas , movies in Scotland, I used to do music full time so I was always looking for any sort of work that was interesting, with the band, I appeared on TV in Scotland and became a little well known and this helped get some small parts. I’ve also been in a few movies and TV shows here in China including the Jackie Chan movie ’12 Zodiacs’ .


8) You use a lot of props on stage like a horse head and a miniature doll of yourself, it’s very funny, how did you come up with this idea ?


I’m always looking for ways to enliven the show and dress up as different characters , I just saw the horse’s head here in Beijing and thought it would go well with a Country song. The miniature doll of myself has been around for a while , one time back in Scotland, after a show it disappeared then I started to get photos of it through email in different locations , it seemed to be having a more exciting life than me at the time. Eventually I got a message to meet mini Hugh in a bar, there he was with a small whisky and the culprits who had kidnapped him, some local Goths who used to watch my band.


1) First of all, can you introduce yourself as a musician ? 请你自我介绍 。

Jack, bass player, vocalist and songwriter for Zhege; A band of mixed origin, living in Beijing, we play lyrical pop music and write songs about things we see and stuff that happens to us.

2) What do you think of the Beijing Underground music scene ? 你觉得北京地下音乐现在怎么样?

There are many musicians in Beijing as it has a big cover music scene. It’s interesting watching some people rebelling against the predictable pop music that is repeatedly being requested of them. Also, because the modern music scene is (comparatively) young here, there is a lot of space for innovation.

3) What’s your favorite music to listen to ? 你最喜欢听什么音乐和乐队?

David Bowie, Blur, Flight of the Conchords, Bill Evans, it’s a bit of a mix really.

4) How long have you been doing music ? What was your first instrument and why did you start playing music ? 你做了音乐做了多长时间 ?你是怎么开始做音乐的?

For quite a while now. Jack started on keys. Rapper/ percussionist Kris started with cowbell. Slava, our producer, was a choir conductor. Music is something that makes time pass easily.

5) What are your other musical projects ? 你有别的乐队吗?你的音乐计划是什么?

We all perform regularly with other groups. I play with various jazz and pop groups. Kris plays Latin music regularly. Our guitarist Alex plays with Chinese pop artists.

6) Any music you want to share ? 有没有你想分享或者推荐的音乐?

Yes. Listen to the album ‘At Home’ by Avishai Cohen. Beautiful music.


Roan & 大树 Dashu

1) First of all, can you introduce yourself as a musician ? 请你自我介绍 。

Roan 是成立于1995 年的波兰摇滚乐队。成立至今,乐队已经在波兰,奥地利,丹麦,德国,美国,英国和中国等国家举办了1000 多场音乐会。Roan 参加过多个欧洲最大的音乐节:Woodstock(波兰),Wacken Open Air (德国),Roskilde Festival (丹麦)和Sziget Festival(匈牙利)。

Roan is a Polish rock band created in 1995. Since that time we have been playing over 1000 concerts in Poland, Austria, China, Denmark, Germany, Great Britain, USA. Our show portfolio comprises performance at the biggest music festivals in Europe: Woodstock (Poland), Wacken Open Air (Germany), Roskilde Festival (Denmark), Sziget Festival (Hungary).

在过去10 年里,Roan 在中国已经举办了100 多场音乐会(北京,杭州,合肥,昆山,南京,宁波,上海,苏州,武汉,香港)。

The band has been playing for about 25 years and participated in major rock festivals around the world.

Generally it’s rock music. The band has been inspired by bands like Foo Fighters, Alice In Chains, Pearl Jam and U2. 

2) What do you think of the Beijing Underground music scene ? 你觉得北京地下音乐现在怎么样?

Usually the band plays in the Shanghai area, but we are looking for a great music experience in Beijing.

3) What’s your favorite music to listen to ? 你最喜欢听什么音乐和乐队?

Audioslave – Like a Stone, U2 – One Love, Whitesnake – Sailing ships.

4) How long have you been doing music ? What was your first instrument and why did you start playing music ? 你做了音乐做了多长时间 ?你是怎么开始做音乐的?

The motives were a combination of passion and girls related matters :-).

The first instrument for the guitarist was his vocals, for the drummer it was cooking pans, for the bass guitarist it was trumpet and we later changed our ways to get involved into the current shape of the band.

Eric: (Peppercorns)

1) First of all, can you introduce yourself as a musician ? 请你自我介绍 。

Eric, vocalist/synth player for the band “Peppercorns”, synth player for “Harridans”. Hard working songwriter, first grade synth fanatic, second grade guitarist, amateur thereminist

 2) What do you think of the Beijing Underground music scene ? 你觉得北京地下音乐现在怎么样?

Blossoming, the new tides are pushing the old tides from behind.

3) What’s your favorite music to listen to ? 你最喜欢听什么音乐和乐队?

Recently it’s 70s prog/art rock, and some French music.

4) How long have you been doing music ? What was your first instrument and why did you start playing music ? 你做了音乐做了多长时间 ?你是怎么开始做音乐的?

Learned guitar in high school, dedicated on music from 2016.

5) What are your other musical projects ? 你有别的乐队吗?你的音乐计划是什么?

Beside my main band the Peppercorns, I got two more bands Harridans and Wolf Solent, will be releasing album this year with all three projects. Also I have a solo project, songs that didn’t fit with any of the bands.
除了我主要的音乐项目飞椒乐队之外,还有Harridans以及Wolf Solent 乐队,都会在今年发行专辑。还有我的个人solo音乐项目,是与这些乐队无关的个人创作。

6) Any music you want to share ? 有没有你想分享或者推荐的音乐?

Album “L’heptade” by French band Harmonium. One of the best prog/art rock album in the 70s, most successfully combining classical orchestral elements with epic rock.
Harmonium 乐队的 《L’heptade》专辑。70年代最棒的经典艺术/前卫摇滚概念专辑之一,成功的把古典音乐之华美与经典摇滚乐结合。

Stone Ahonen Han: (Jukka Ahonen)

1) First of all, can you introduce yourself as a musician ? 请你自我介绍 。

I play guitar alright and bunch of other instruments less alright. I love to improvise but I also compose music. I like to express my self minimally in harmony and melody but having multiple dimensions inrhythm, structure and texture.

2) What do you think of the Beijing Underground music scene ? 你觉得北京地下音乐现在怎么样?

There is a tons of potential which desperately needs nurturing before all this talent goes to waste. At the moment Beijing do not support enough original artists. Having comfort in your life by solely trusting your own personal musical latent is next to impossible.

Therefore musicians are trapped in the between two worlds; world of passion and profit and success demanding, increasingly expensive Beijing. This has its negative impact on the content of art; art becomes more escapist, something that tries to forget  the reality instead of confronting it. If musicians could make a real living out of their music, then music would have the means to challenge the society and eventually challenge the music it self; brake the vicious circle of repeating itself. That kind of music has always been appealing to me. Not the kind of music that is fun but the kind of music which started riots and broke boundaries and was always one step ahead. I get sick of this nostalgia trippin’ music that sadly large portion of today’s independent music, globally as well as locally, represents.

3) What’s your favorite music to listen to ? 你最喜欢听什么音乐和乐队?

Here is some examples of music I was talking about above and stuff that I find myself constantly returning to: Bach, John Coltrane, Miles Davis, Edward Vesala, Jimi Hendrix, Nirvana, Igor Stravinsky, Claude Debussy, Steve Reich, Terry Riley, Hariprasad Chaurasia, Magma, Arvo Pärt, King Crimson, Olivier Messiane, John Cage, Bob Dylan, Sainkho Namtchylak, Lamonte Young, Frank Zappa, Eric Dolphy, Ornette Coleman, Radiohead.

4) How long have you been doing music ? What was your first instrument and why did you start playing music ? 你做了音乐做了多长时间 ?你是怎么开始做音乐的?

I started to play guitar 20 years ago, as soon as I could get some sounds out of it, I started to write my own music. I don’t know why I do it, I guess that is what I am trying to figure out by doing it. For me it was never about being ”cool” or ”getting girls” though, playing music was never an option, it was a must – something I had to do, but why? I dunno, I guess it has something to do with my mental health.

5) What are your other musical projects ? 你有别的乐队吗?你的其他音乐项目是什么?

In Beijng I play in three groups at the moment. The one in the poster, this is actually our first gig, and Voodoo Cats and the Ambulance of Love. Then I write music on my own. At the moment I am close to finish three part piano piece which is kind of study on polyrhythms and water.

6) Any music you want to share ? 有没有你想分享或者推荐的音乐?

If you have never really sat down and listened classical music, check out Stravinsky’s ballet, Rite of Spring. 30 (or something) people end up in to the hospital from the premiere of this piece 1913, back then this music was too much for the conservative audience and caused fight between modernists and conservatives. This piece was a real eye opener for me when I first heard it 15 years ago.

Stone Ahonen Han: (Peter Stone)

First of all, can you introduce yourself as a musician ? 请你自我介绍 .

Bass player, DJ, composer, musician since 30 years, graduated with distinction from MAI the 1st french current music school, I also did jazz conservatory. I m open to every genres and deeply think that music is not a question of esthetics but of artist and feeling. 

What do you think of the Beijing Underground music scene ? 你觉得北京地下音乐现在怎么样?

what does underground meaning? If u mean by not commercial, Beijing is going better but still need to go further, for a 20 millions town it’s still far from Berlin Paris or London which are smaller town. 

What’s your favorite music to listen to ? 你最喜欢听什么音乐和乐队?

I like all the 70’s music, led Zep, hendrix, Zappa, king Crimson, and also Jazz from the 60’s and all the fusion of jazz rock, like Miles Davis, Herbie Hancock, Wayne shorter and weather report.

How long have you been doing music ? What was your first instrument and why did you start playing music ? 你做了音乐做了多长时间 ?你是怎么开始做音乐的

i’ve been doing music for 30 years, I started with drums, then guitar and finally arrived on bass. And I did music because I loved it and also, all my 4 sisters play an instrument, my mother is a mélomane she listens to all the kind of music, from Motörhead to Mozart. It helps to keep an open mind, thank you mama 🙂

What are your other musical projects ? 你有别的乐队吗?


with the same guys of Stone Ahonen han, we have 2 others ideas, one is doing seventies cover like Hendrix, something really open where we can improvise a lot inside, we’re not interested to play copy of record without freedom of playing inside. Then the other idea is to play music movie rearrange it and have fun with it.

Any music you want to share ? 有没有你想分享或者推荐的音乐?

as music teacher, I advice to listen the basics before going to modern, so in different esthetics I ll say Bitches Brew from miles Davis, led Zep 2 De Led Zeppelin, Thrust from Herbie Hancock and maybe lark s tongue in the aspic From King Crimson.

Brickleberry, a strange kind of berry

First of all, can you introduce yourself as a musician ? 请你自我介绍 。


We are Brickleberry from Beijing, we love doing music together as a band. We’ve been together for two years. The singer is the guitar player, we Zhang Helin on bass, we have Pan Peisheng on keyboard, Bao Bao on drums. This is the way it is these days.

What do you think of the Beijing Underground music scene ? 你觉得北京地下音乐现在怎么样?


The Beijing Underground has more bands than before, it is more convenient to make music in Beijing than in the past, the threshold to enter the scene is lower than it used to be, it is a good and and a bad thing. I compare that to the change from using film to having everything being digital in the movie industry, it made it easier for people to make films, but the quality of cinema has become lower than it used to be. Also we live in a time period where everything goes fast, there is less good music than before, it is not only the problem of underground music, it is also the problem of music in general, this problem has to be solved. What we do is just being more concentrated and positive.

What’s your favorite music to listen to ? 你最喜欢听什么音乐和乐队?

我们一般听的音乐都是在Dance-Punk / Indie Rock /DISCO 之间徘徊,有时候也会看心情,音乐就是给人情绪的,不局限于风格

We in general listen to Dance-Punk/Indie Rock/DISCO, but it depends on our feelings, music is a thing giving moods, id doesn’t matter to limit those moods with styles.

How long have you been doing music ? What was your first instrument and why did you start playing music ? 你做了音乐做了多长时间 ?你是怎么开始做音乐的?


It seems like all of us wanted to do music from a very age. At a young age there are the things one wants to do and the steps to become the person one wishes to become. The mind of a young heart….

What are your other musical projects ? 你有别的乐队吗?你的其他音乐项目是什么?


Our drummer Baobao also has a band called Wensha Forest, the band has a long history, for others in the band work gets us pretty busy, we use our energy to create crisp berries.

Any music you want to share ? 有没有你想分享或者推荐的音乐?

Shitdisco, they are a band from Scotland, there are 4 members in the band. The band was formed in 2003, really good band.

Shitdisco,他们是来自苏格兰格拉斯哥的乐队,乐队由 4 个成员组成。03年的乐队,玩的很好.

The Beauty

First of all, can you introduce yourself as a musician ? 请你自我介绍 。

我叫卫怡然,是The Beauty乐队的主唱。性别男,平时喜欢弹弹琴看看电影什么的,其他也没什么好介绍的.

My name is Dawei Yiran, I’m the singer in The Beauty, I’m a boy, I usually like to play guitar and watch movies, there’s nothing much more to say about me.    

What do you think of the Beijing Underground music scene ? 你觉得北京地下音乐现在怎么样?


I think there are less and less rock bands in Beijing that can call themselves “underground” these days.
Apart from a few people most musicians in the underground have to work to feed themselves. The Beijing music scene environment for music is great though, it’s very inclusive, very strong and very diverse. Maybe on any street in Beijing if there are 10 people, 8 of them will be in a metal band.

The level of life of the audience is getting higher and higher and there taste in music is more and more demanding. Moreover now with internet anybody can listen to anything at any given time. One night I was at Yugong Yishan and I saw someone in the audience who was still wearing his school uniform and had probably come directly from school looking at the concert and commenting on it directly on internet at the same time, very professional, this is a good phenomenon I think.

On one side people are starting more and more to listen to rock music, but on the other end it gives more and more pressure to musicians.

We don’t live in the age of doing without thinking anymore, when you do music you have to spend more time to think about what you are doing, this is the wiser choice to make.

What’s your favorite music to listen to ? 你最喜欢听什么音乐和乐队?

我平时听得比较杂;ZZ Top、Gotthard、The Killers…有时候还会听电子和民谣。最喜欢朗朗上口而且编配巧妙的音乐。

I usually like listening to very diverse music: ZZ Top, Gotthard, The Killers…sometimes even electronic and folk music. I love catchy clever music the most.

How long have you been doing music ? What was your first instrument and why did you start playing music ? 你做了音乐做了多长时间 ?你是怎么开始做音乐的?


I have been playing music for quite a short time, about 4 years. I started playing guitar in university, I still hadn’t really studied how to play chords very well when I wrote my first songs, so I was using very simple chords. Later I got completely drowned into it, my love of music became got out of hand.

What are your other musical projects ? 你有别的乐队吗?你的音乐计划


现在只有The Beauty一个,我们的风格算是英式加朋克加车库,但其实我们也说不好算什么风格,风格这东西是别人给你的定义,我们的定义就是好听就行。目前乐队还是照常排练和演出,最近写了点新东西。马上会发我们的第一张EP,发完之后继续排练和演出。我们希望有一天能够站上更大的舞台,写出点能让人记住的旋律。但这事不急于求成,踏踏实实做音乐是我们目前最主要的工作。

For the moment it’s only The Beauty. Our style is like English Indie Rock + Punk + Garage but in fact we can’t really say clearly what our style is, I think a music style name is more something other people give you, our moto is “if it sounds good it’s good”.

Our band has been practicing and writing new songs recently, so we will soon issue our first EP and after will continue practice and playing. We hope one day to stand on a bigger stage and write melodies people can actually remember, but everything takes time and for the moment we concentrate on doing music as our most important thing to do.

Any music you want to share ? 有没有你想分享或者推荐的音乐?

I really like Blondie’s album “Blondie”, there mix of Punk and New Wave is great. After that maybe The Strokes, generally speaking when people ask me to recommend a band to talk about I always talk about them. 

If you’ve never heard of them just start with the first album “Is this it”, you won’t be disappointed.

推荐Blondie的第一张专辑《Blondie》,朋克加新浪潮太好听了。然后就是The Strokes,基本上别人让我推荐的时候我都会说他们,没听过的朋友从第一张《Is this it》开始听吧,绝对不会让你失望的

A. Borealis

First of all, can you introduce yourself as an artist?

My artist name is A.Borealis (aka Shannon Lethbridge).  I paint, draw, sing, write and play music. 

What do you think about art in China? Do you know any other artist like you?

I enjoy the simplicity and elegance of traditional Chinese paintings. 

So far I haven’t come across other similar artist. 

What do you take inspiration from for your paintings and videos?

My paintings are inspired by nature and what is happening in my environment. I then create still-shot animations using my paintings. 

Who’s your favourite painter?

Vincent Van Gogh. Since I was young I’ve always been inspired by his abstract work and texture. 

And Gustav Klimt. I love how he relates and connects people to nature in an abstract form. 

You also play in a band and as a solo artist, what are you trying to express through all these different ways?

Yes, I play in a band called The Plum Trees that started off in Australia with my brother. We currently both live in China. I also perform solo as A.Borealis. 

I use music to communicate honestly with people. In my band I like to do improv singing, which is how we make songs now. It’s very empowering to have a band support improvised lyrics especially at live shows. Here, my lyrics are more mental than emotional. If I’m mad it’s a good way to release those emotions with the help of my band. On a whole it’s just my way of describing mental hurdles and releasing frustrations. 

My solo music is more emotional than mental. In my solo performances its really about what is going on in my heart and it’s a safe place for me to be vulnerable as well as be very direct with my words.  My solo performances are about me being honest with myself. 

Tell me more about your musical projects?

Recently my band released an original album.

Solo, I’ve been combining my art/animations with my music/writing. I organise “An Art Show” events where I showcase my music and art performances. It’s also a platform for other artist, writers and musicians to experiment and collaborate. 

Any art websites or music you want to share?

The Plum Trees music

An Art Show

Disaster Chat

First of all, can you introduce yourself as a musician  ?

Disaster Chat is a group of friends that likes to play music. Our talents our found in our ability to write music that speaks to us and our enjoyment in playing live. We are not complicated, and our musical tones can be discovered through our energy. 

What do you think of the Beijing Underground music 

scene ?

We think the Beijing underground music scene is an incredibly unique and diverse group of musical melody.  Any kind of genera from any kind of musician can be found and often playing together in the same night. We love being a part of the scene and we also enjoy hanging out with all of the other great musicians.

What’s your favorite music to listen to ?

We all listen to very different music but most of our tastes focus around rock. We all have our favorite mainstream rock artists such as Rage Against the Machine, Saosin, Foster the People, Death Cab for Cutie, and Radio Head, but we also listen to our own favorite fringe artists. 

How long have you been doing music ? What was your first instrument and why did you start playing music ?

Disaster Chat has been together for 4 years but all of us except for Joe H has been in bands since we were teens. Justin and Jesse were in a High school band that performed in Oklahoma, USA and Joe B was in band that was based in Birmingham UK.

We started playing music for similar reasons but mostly because we liked the friendship that comes with playing music with other people. 

What are your other musical projects ?

We are currently working on finishing our album that has been in the works for years. By this July we will have released our full album and most of it can be found on our website at 

Any CD’s or music and video links you want to share ?

We don’t have much time for other musical projects as we are incredibly busy with life but we would like to do more in the near future if possible. 


First of all, can you introduce yourself as a musician  ?

We are Rhonda – Tommy (Guitar), Nico (Bass) and Alex (Drums). 

What do you think of the Beijing Underground music 
scene ?

We think Beijing deserves its reputation as the hub for China’s underground scene. Over the past thirty years, there have been little pockets of exciting scenes in cities all over China – from Wuhan to Chengdu and Shanghai – but Beijing has consistently been the place musicians have deliberately moved to in order to gain some wider exposure.

We don’t see that going away anytime soon.

What’s your favorite music to listen to ?

In general, our tastes are all over the rock/metal spectrum – from Tool and Slayer to Mogwai and Parquet Courts – but in terms of local bands, we love sharing the stage with our friends Macondo and Pacalolo. We try to regularly play shows together under the faux-festival “PacaMacRhonda-Palooza” – the next one is actually going to be May 5th at Temple Bar.

Recently, Tommy has been listening to “Fucked With a Knife” by Cannibal Corpse.

How long have you been doing music ? What was your first instrument and why did you start playing music ?

We’ve been playing music for a long time – Tommy’s first show was actually back in 1953. 

Any albums or music and video links you want to share to talk about your music ?

Here’s a link to one of our favorite live shows – The Liquid Lights concert in January 2017. It features two of our songs – “Don T (Diego’s Eyes)”, and “Vow of Silence”:!3~5!12~A

What are your other musical projects ?

Alex also plays drums for a garage-punk band The Swinging Barbarellas. 

Sino Hearts, a punk heart

First of all,can you introduce yourself as a musician?

My name is Zhong,lead singer and guitarist of The Sino Hearts,used to live in europe for a decade,played with several punk bands like Deecracks,Frankenstyle,ect and moved back to beijing in 2016.

What do you think of the Beijing Underground music scene ?

With my former viennese punk band Frankenstyle, Deecracks and my current Band the Sino Hearts I toured through over china (hk,taiwan) previously 3 times and I found the beijing underground scene devoloped quite fast and the venues are getting professional, new generation of audience fully accept alternative rock music.but it’s very unique if you compare it to europe or western world.

What’s your favourite music to listen to ?


I love 60s Beat music and 70s Glam rock, Power Pop

How long have you been doing music? What was your first instrument and why did you starting playing music ?

I’ve been doing music for almost 10 years and I learned piano when I was a kid and love music

Any albums or music and video links you want to share ?

Undertones,the Boys,Flamin Groovies,the Real Kids and other classic powerpop bands.

What are your other musical projects ?

not anymore. I’m only with the Sino Hearts

Any CD’s or music and video links you want to share ?

Never Young Beach ! japanese pop rock band which reminds me of the Growlers.

Carlo, the magic drummer

First of all, can you introduce yourself as a musician  ?


I’m Carlo , I play drums, keyboard, vocals , and I’m from California . 


What do you think of the Beijing Underground music 
scene ?


I feel there are 2 distinct scenes that occasionally overlap each other but usually stay in their own camps. The foreigner expat musicians are only here temporarily , usually work part time, and have a lot of freedom for experimentation and interesting mashups of music styles and international members. The local Chinese bands are usually pretty young college kids who have a brief window of opportunity to make something happen before societal pressures force them into marriage, career, and so on. The bands that do survive definitely thrive creatively on that stress and general resistance in mainstream China to any live music that isn’t CCTV friendly ktv pop shit.

What’s your favorite music to listen to ?


Classic 60’s-70’s psychedelic rock, late 80’s early 90’s hard rock and alternative , metal, blues…. And The Bee Gees.


How long have you been doing music ? What was your first instrument and why did you start playing rock music ?


I started taking piano lessons when I was 4 and would listen to albums and try to play along with them. I stopped taking lessons around 14 and picked up drums because I was an angry teenager that wanted to hit things. My friends agreed and we just started a band not really knowing how to play, just being noisy and obnoxious. It was just an escape from the tedium of suburbia. 


Any albums or music and video links you want to share to talk about your music ? 


Since moving to Beijing 6 years ago, I’ve been a part of many projects; Xinjiang folk rock band Bilaye, stoner punk rock trio The Death Narcissist, prog party band The Harridans, and my longest running project as the drummer of Djang San + Band.

No particular link to any, just search around .

How was it in Japan and Korea touring with Djang San ?


It was great getting out of Beijing and meeting other international bands, and sort of taking a more objective look at our project and see how it compares to others, not just locally in China. Really good, positive experience.


What about the next Djang San + Band album ?


The next album is in many ways the first one written entirely from scratch as a whole group. We’ve played together so long it was a really relaxed and natural process coming up with the new material, and the songs have a lot of power and energy behind them. I’m excited for the new materials actually and they’re really fun to play

Clancy, space bass with a cool attitude

First of all, can you introduce yourself as a musician ?


I’m clancy from Australia and I play bass. 


What do you think of the Beijing Underground music scene?


I think the BUMS is great because there there are so many different opportunities for bands of any genre to sing any language and find great people who come to their shows who really appreciate the diversity of original music from around the world. 


What’s your favorite music to listen to ?


I’ll like any style if the song is good but a few artists that have really inspired me are the Red Hot Chili Peppers, No Doubt and Jimi Hendrix, just to name a few. 


How long have you been doing music ? What was your first instrument and why did you start a rock band to begin with ?


I’ve been playing bass for 17years. My father tried to teach me piano when I was young but I wasn’t interested. Years later my best friend was learning guitar and I followed him to a guitar shop where I saw a bass and thought it looked cool, so eventually I got one and we made a band together. I love playing music together with a good bunch of friends, best feeling in the world. 


How was it in Japan and Korea touring with Djang San ?


I didn’t get to play with The band in Korea but I was on holiday at the same time they were there. I was already friends with carlo and when I heard he was going I wanted to see them perform. I was just good timing that I was there and Steno the current bass player at the time was planning to return home. I was basically accepted into the band before I got to audition properly because we got along so well. 

I’m in love with Japan so to be there and play music was an amazing experience for me. I miss the food and I hope we can go again soon!


What about the next Djang San + Band album ?


I’m really looking forward to the new songs we’ve been working on. It’s been almost two years in the band for me now and I think we’ve all bonded really well. I think that will show in the new album because we’re all sharing ideas together to create something like we haven’t done before. It feels fresh and exciting. 


What are your other musical projects ?


At the moment I really only have one active band. Most people who come to Beijing from outside normal return home after a few years. But I have a band with my sister the Plum Trees and another band called the Sleepwalkers which I got the opportunity to scream out loud as co-singer. I’m slowly working on an experimental bass solo album but I much prefer performing with others than I do alone. 

Oldy Baby, not that old.

Oldy Baby, first of all, where does that name come from? What does it mean?

Oldy Baby is about new times for old ideas, basically, it comes from me.


What do you think of the Beijing Underground music scene?


I love the Beijing music scene because the people and venues and bands inspire me and I like to be part of that feeling. I like to interact.


What’s your favorite music to listen to?


I listen to rock and punky stuff.


How long have you been doing music ? What was your first instrument and why did you start a rock band to begin with ?


First instrument was a piano around 6 years old but I didn’t like being taught how to play by the music teacher. It was boring to play a song exactly as written, I mean for me I felt bored. I found guitar more open and stronger and cooler and funnier, and my teacher taught me the blues, which lead me to punk and rock and that.

Start a band for chicks and to be loud enough so other people would listen to me. “I got something to sayyy!”


Any CD’s or music and video links you want to share to talk about your music?


I have Oldy Baby, which is a punk duo with Willy, and Sardine is Back and the Wheel is Broken, which is an improv-psycho punky band, and then I got a folk duo called Coupla Cup with Reese. Those are my currents.

Nick Parson, experimental but human

Nick Parsons, first of all, where does that name come from? What does it mean ?

This name is from two of my favourite musicians,Nick Drake and Gram Parsons.


What do you think of the Beijing Underground music scene ?

Beijing Underground music is hopeful,in fact, many musicians are world class but not famous,people can see they’re shining.

What’s your favorite music to listen to ?

My favorite music, it’s hard to choose…great musicians like Bob Dylan,Neil Young, David Bowie, Syd Barrett, Hendrix, Kraftwerk an so on, of course Nick Drake and Gram Parsons, they’re my teachers and my favourite.


How long have you been doing music ? What was your first instrument and why did you start a rock band to begin with ?

I’ve been doing music solo for just one year since the first solo show. Before that I had a Led Zeppelin cover band in college and I was lead guitar. I love classic rock, that is where I started.


Any CD’s or music and video links you want to share to talk about your music ?

NI have three music projects. 

1. My solo projects, about every possibility of music.  2. A Folk duet with my female partner.    3, I’m going to start a new band soon, psychedelic style