Maybe Mars closed out their ten year anniversary with a mainly homegrown affair, including live electronic duo white+, psychedelic groovers Chui Wan, and of course P.K.14, whose fingers have been in the Maybe Mars honeypot since day one, and remains one of the most influential bands of the underground scene in China. However, as it was the past few days, the true crowd pleaser for me were the Xi’an based band FAZI. Formerly The Fuzz, the band has been prolific as ever in the past few years, releasing their second album with the label this past summer (a year and half after their last). A jittery, heartfelt blend of post punk swag and indie rock pop, they kept the pace lively and the melodies coming full force.
While a lot of that can be attributed to their madman lead singer, who shakes convulsively and whose eyes go back all the way into his head as he lays down his sermon, the whole band was in top form. Truly a joy to watch. They lit the stage up from the get go and did not let up till one bit.
white + hasn’t been getting much action lately but I’m ever glad they’re back. The project has always been a playground for drummer Wang Xu and more importantly Shouwang, and it felt like they’re just about ready to unleash new material upon the world – messier, and a hell of a lot more emotive, I think we’re gonna be in for a treat once that fully forms.
Chui Wan gonna Chui Wan, and as I mentioned last month, they’re a band that takes pleasure in meandering in their songs, and if you’re game, then you’ve gonna have some fun. I think Wu Qiong on vocals is mesmerizing stuff, and the band knows how to enrapture when they really want to (between meandering like the beautiful space cadets they are).
And P.K.14 – there’s nothing like Yang Haisong towering over you. Dude is built like a truck. In fact, the whole band is muscular in both their look and musical style. They’re a precision missile of ramped up post punk rock, whose aggression can never hide the poetic grace and melancholic strain underneath. Yeah, never a dull show from these behemoths.
And like that, Golden Week Maybe Mars madness comes to an end. Three shows (plus a gallery opening), ten bands, eight water bottles, and a heck ton of good music.