Carsick Cars

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By Gerry Mak in New Music on Monday 9 November 2009

Beijing’s thriving music scene has no shortage of good bands, but few are as unabashedly innocent and giddy as Carsick Cars. Inspired by the blazing post-punk of Swell Maps, the aloof experimentalism of 90s shoegaze bands, and occasionally the discordance of Glenn Branca, Carsick Cars are equally influenced by the bands around them — PK-14, […]

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Buddha Machine 2

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By Gerry Mak in New Trends on Tuesday 25 November 2008

Buddhist temples all over China, Taiwan, and Hong Kong sell or give away small plastic boxes that play a loop of prayer and chanting. A few years ago, Chinese electronic act FM3 hacked into some of these boxes and programmed their own music into them. The band had their own Buddha Machines manufactured in a […]

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Hanggai

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By Gerry Mak in New Music on Wednesday 1 October 2008

Beijing-based band Hanggai write original songs in the traditional folk styles of their Mongolian ancestors — throat-singing, horsehair fiddles, lutes — spearheading an Asian version of the old-time revival. Though it’s only through the digital age that the rest of the world can access this beautiful music, it makes you want to slow down and […]

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Xiao He

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By Gerry Mak in New Music on Wednesday 20 August 2008

One of the quirkiest and memorable bands to come out of the Beijing folk-rock scene was Glorious Pharmacy, an almost too-arty-for-their-own-good avant-jazz acoustic band that were notorious for impromptu puppet shows and ten-minute saxophone freak outs.

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PK14

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By Gerry Mak in New Music on Wednesday 9 April 2008

The underground music scene in Beijing produces a lot of derivative and half-assed bands, but PK14 are great by any standards.

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