Knock Chinese holidays all you want but at least there’s a steady flow of them to keep our sanity in check. And the best part, more music in indulge yourself in – so best prepare yourself for the upcoming Dragon Boat onslaught of shows, festivals, and summer evening chill-outs. Soak it in and as always hit up the calendar for more.
Friday May 30th
The Hanggai Music Festival returns to giant of the grass Dos Kolegas – Hanggai frontman Iichi has curated quite the lineup, mixed with local and international talent – this evening the show runners themselves team up with Barcelona polka/ska/flamenco all around party starters La Pegatina who as I recall are friggin righteous. One of Beijing\’s unsung heroes of the indie rock scene, Hedgehog, return to the stage as part of their nation-wide tour to promote their newest, sixth, full-length record, Phantom Pop Star – relish in this rare appearance over at Mao Livehouse. Acclaimed folk singer-songwriter Zhang Weiwei performs at Mako Livehouse while Taiwanese noise maker Mr. Dirty join forces with our own pipaphile thruoutin and Japanese punk outfit punik at 69 Cafe. Meanwhile, School gets appropriately sloushed as stoner rockers Devils at the Crossroads teams up with ska lords End of the World, The Groove Collective and Uterus. The always dependable WHAI who absolutely murdered it at 2K last week bring their bad ass numbers to Temple. Check out Guangzhou indie act Mekia Deer at XP or to the Hot Cat Club for Lattice, The Flyx, and Cherry Mor. Finally swing through Jianghu Bar to catch Beijing Jungle Big Band, which as you may have guessed is a big friggin band.
Saturday May 31st
Day two at Dos Kolegas brings out Japanese ‘samurai rock’ outfit Turtle Island, along with Mongolian metal outfit Nine Treasures, East-West fusion folk group Djang San, up and comers Horse Radio, as well as Chenianpo, The Randy Abel Stable, and ZUUL. Over in Gulou, XP is hosting one hell of a show tonight as they invite some of their neighbors\’ cream of the crop – first there\’s jangly Taiwanese psych-indie noise makers Forests (whose members first cut their teeth with Skip Skip Ben Ben\’s original band Boyz and Girlz) who’ll join Hong Kong post punks The Yours, whose dreamy, brooding, shoegazing has caught many people’s attention. And if that wasn\’t enough, they\’re being back by last years\’ Maybe Mars\’ champs Chui Wan, white +, as well as Parallel Pyres. Campus folk rockers Namo, whose satirical, charismatic, jagged, poppy brand of crosstalk-rock has won over heaps and heaps of fans over the past few years, preps their latest album with a special performance down at Mako Livehouse. Punk returns home to DMC for a weekend holiday bash – there\’s no better excuse to head out to Tongzhou for a little inebriated fist pumping hooliganism. Musical duties fall to punk regulars Bedstars, D-Crash, and Shochu Legion who just released a hefty dose of aggression into the world a few weeks back – expect lotta bbq, dirt cheap beer, and that weekend getaway you and your lady have always talked about. Post rock giants The Album Leaf out of the US, return to Beijing performing at Yugong Yishan with indietronica artist me:mo. Get dirty over at Temple as Taiwanese punk oufit Mr. Dirty join forces with Japan mohawk-sporting fiend punik out of Japan who’ll both be supported by local punks Gum Bleed. Shanghai indie rock outfit The Wish show us what they got at School alongside our own Residence A, The Big Wave, The Twenties, Heat Wave, and Pao Wang. Further down Mao Livehouse keeps things rock and rolling as Bedstars join Devils at the Crossroad, Tractor, Los Crasher, Miss Mix, and Shochu Legion for some old school fun. Ska favorites Mr. Honey (formerly Toyhead) keep things light and breezy over at Blue Stream Bar while Joking Tasty keep it rowdy at the Hot Cat Club. Finally catch live sets at The Other Place from Indian electronic artist Hashback Hashish, Changchun-based jfi, and Late Troubles, the solo project from Snapline singer Chen Xi – all as part of Sinotronics summer tour.
Sunday June 1st
Day three of the Hanggai Music Festival at Dos Kolegas finds the always-reliable Ajinai alongside the rarely seen Miao, as well as Hohchahar, Sanchuan, Mengjing, and The Hutong Yellow Weasels cutting loose at the drive in. Time to break out the circuit board for this electronically infused evening of music at XP that graces your ears rather than berate them – catch iimmune, whose expansive work with post rock outfit Glow Curve is evident in the dense layered earworms as well as ear-teasers nara, minimalist-dabbler jfi, and free form saxophonist Gao Jiafeng. Swiss melodic death metal juggernauts Eluveitie turn Mao Livehouse in a temple of worship and finally catch Xinxiang pop punksters Cyclops alongside Lifetest and 0190 at School.