Saturday, April 28, 2007
Beijing's Punk Scene
One of my colleagues asked me if I wanted to check out a concert with some "avant garde" musicians. Sure, I said.
So he took me to a place called M.A.O. at 111 Gouloudongdajie, near Hou Hai (literally "the back lake"). Interestingly it's on the same street as the Buddhist Lama Temple, a compound with ornate upturned roofs. I'll have to check it out another time.
And when we walked into the bar, it had a small corridor that led to a big room that was elevated at the back and had a relatively low ceiling. But it was soon packed with mostly men with long hair, mustaches and baggy T-shirts, smoking up a storm and drinking beer.
Finally at around 8:20pm the show started with a group called Miankong (face). The lead singer was an attractive guy with long chestnut brown hair past his shoulders that he swung around and wore a green military-like shirt. Flanking him were two guitarists who didn't sing backup but were soon sweating like crazy, and the drummer beat the heat by playing bare chested.
The music was like grunge or garage, with lots of screaming and angst pouring from the lyrics. While the lead singer was trying hard to rev up the crowd, they were pretty tame and for the most part, stood politely watching him.
The room was so smoky and hot that I ducked out early and missed the second group. My coworker admitted today it wasn't that good of a show so maybe I'll have to check in out again.