It’s Turkey Day folks, but before I get to greasing up a dead bird with my pervy little hands, I gotta get you the latest in hard rock, post rock, and more with the newest releases from Perpetual Motion Machine, Incisors, Hualun, as well as the latest compilation of young money makers with Voice of Wuhan Vol. 2. Check it out.
New wave, traditional Chinese history meddling, rock outfit Perpetual Motion Machine, one of my first loves here in Beijing, return with their third full-length album Battle.Song. And as the name implies, they’ve upped their game a fair bit, creating a heavy sound that mixes everything from metal to electronica to bombast one’s senses. At times, the increased production are be a bit too distracting (lay off on those samples boys) but when it works it works, as on ‘云是鹤家乡’ which add much weight to the electric guitar and kick drum transforming from meditative jangle into a full on head banger. Yet, as with their second album, Perpetual Motion Machine is at their best in when taking it slow and easy, whether it waxing Beijing love on ‘贝贝’ or letting their guitars slide on ‘大乐’. At the end of the day, Perpetual Motion Machine are one of the few bands who, like Second Hand Rose, use Chinese traditional music as a jumping off point for rock and roll. And I can only hope they continue down that path. Listen to their latest here.
Incisors is a very apt name and description for the Beijing-based hard rock band, fronted by毛大雨 as its got some serious bite to it (ohhhhh). Their self-titled debut, produced by Yang Haisong, is a dose of old school (i.e. 90s) hard rock that’s propelled by it’s hard hitting drums and guitars and melodic Chinese lyrics. And boy does毛大雨hit those notes sometimes a straight up begins growling into the mic. While, the eleven tracks can sometimes bleed too easily into one another sound wise, the album works best when it breaks away from the mold, and offers moments of calm, like on ‘Letter From A Strange Dog’, whose bass line offers a fine leeway into the chorus. Overall, Incisors are a fine addition to the hard rock scene here, a scene that has taken lyrics and sincerity for granted. Hit up their debut here and catch their release show this Friday, November 28th at Temple.
Avant grade post rock outfit Hualun, out of Wuhan, after a two year hiatus return with their latest single (and accompany EP) Farewell, a song, they claim, that had rejuvenated the band to head out on the road again. Formed in the midst of a slow spell, out of yet another desolate rehearsal, the song is as simple as they come – a love song. A farewell between a man and women. And what a beautifully fitting song. A goodbye gesture to the past perhaps, but also a sign of things to come. Give the two versions a listen over here and catch Hualun on their nation wide tour this Friday, November 28th at Mao Livehouse.
Last, we have Voice of Wuhan Vol. 2, a compilation album that gathers some of the city’s ‘younger’ voices in the music scene including Nut Shell, Blind Company, The Direction, Wolf Creek, and You Yuan Jing Meng. Not likely I’ll ever mention these bands again as it’s simply not my cup of tea, but if you’ve itching for some britpop, emo, blues, metal, or some serious nineties riffing with such great lyrics like ‘The six-string is my only friend’, then my friend, you have found the jackpot. I’ll give it to You Yuan Jing Meng though, at least their not a direct riff on something else. And hey, props to Wuhan for giving their bands a platform. But yeah, listen at your own accord here.