Gig Recap: SHIFT/CTRL, Bad Treatment, Rat King (2021.01.29)

NIGHT ENGINE 深夜躁动:SHIFT/CTRL、Bad Treatment、Rat King (Yuyintang Park 2021.01.29)

With the majority of gigs in Shanghai being cancelled, due to touring bands and promoters not wanting to be caught with their pants down and spending the beginning of February in quarantine, it was up to the expat community to salvage through the wreckage and give audiences what they needed – a night of no holds barrel rock and roll. And they delivered with Bad Treatment, SHIFT/CTRL, and Rat King bringing some much-needed riotousness to Yuyintang Park last Friday.

Things kicked off with Bad Treatment, who I caught back in November in Hangzhou. There’s something endearingly old school about the band that clicks with me – the Ozzy Osbourne gruff, the leather jackets, and most importantly the earnest melodic conviction. They may not be reinventing the wheel here, but I don’t think I’d have it any other way. 

I really had no idea what to expect from SHIFT/CTRL, the three-piece groove rock outfit featuring some seasoned Shanghai music veterans. Merging heavy riffs with melodic vocals it’s a sound that’s bombastic and shameless in its arena rock sensibilities, touching upon everything from prog rock to grunge within their set. And while this style (or era) of music definitely skipped younger me, but there’s no denying the pull they had with the audience, and once again, how committed the band was to delivering a high-octane performance that left nothing on the table. 

The evening closed out from a set from Rat King, another band I was catching for the first time. And yeah, I forgot how infectious hardcore music can be – especially when it’s this aggressively in your face. With a mischievous edge that reminds you we’re all here to have some fun, they were a manic gleeful one hundred meter dash of blistering rock and roll that left many necks reeling. The perfect way to unwind after a long week. 

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