This coming Friday TOOKOO will try to conquer YuYinTang’s stage with their EMO style. Personally I’m very curious to see how they’ll make it. I don’t have a very positive opinion on all this EMO wave, I believe is a bit insulting to all the bad-smelling darkness produced for generations in hard rock. But on the other hand, I’m always up to be proof wrong, specially on music.
I went to their myspace page and the three things that came first to notice were they sing in English, they have produce one record per year since they exist (!), and they do have a good vibe on their sound.
TOOKOO started on 1999, it was originated by the two twin brothers from Beijing, Li Xiaochuan and Li Xiaoquan; at their very beginning their guitars were aiming to rock, their initial target was Rap Core and some Nu Metal, and their name at that time was 审判 (TRIAL). After several changes on their line up, on 2001 they changed their name to TOOKOO (too cool) and mysteriously they turned their heads and guitars to EMO, releasing their first album as TOOKOO: “Viva! Viva! Viva!”.
The present line up of TOOKOO is composed by Li Xiao Quan on Bass, Li Xiao Chuan on Guitar, Liu Jia (from Beijing) on Drums, Xiao Gan (from Qingdao) on Keyboard and Yan Shua (from Xi’an) on Vocals. Their style, as described by their manager Paul Huang from HotPot Music Records, is a mixed of EMO + Indie + Dance. Among all the many bands influencing their sound are Jimmy eat world, Silverstein,Story of the year, Taking Back Sunday, Underoath and Franz Ferdinand. And going on with this list the reason under TOOKOO singing in English is they define themselves as a global band, they say English lets everybody to understand and they want their lyrics to be understood everywhere.
The band has been seriously working since their beginning, even though 3 of the guys have everyday jobs, they meet with no excuses twice a week to rehearse and to keep the creative work flowing on, from this work is the resulting seven albums they have produced the last seven years. And for this year they are producing a compilation for the 8 years anniversary, with Scream Records. Their manager Paul says they don’t expect high sales of their records due to the “free download effect”, Paul explains records to be just like a business card, “it’s not for money, but just for introducing the band”. He finishes clarifying TOOKOO’s work as: “all because of their passion for music”.
TOOKOO has participated in many concerts all around China and Asia. They have been highlighted many times by Korean and Japanese press, besides all the covering coming from China media. Last November they signed with the American record label “Invisible”. And they are preparing for their Southeast Asia Tour for the summer 2009.
Now they are getting ready, with all their EMO looking hair and fashion styles, to come to Shanghai this next Friday and play at Yuyin Tang bar. They came to play before at LOgO and they rocked the bathroom off to the street, to make more room for all the people smashing inside the place. So right now I’m already doing some head rolls getting ready for this gig and see how much headbanging and dancing they get out of me and the crowd at YYT. While we wait, a treat from TOOKOO guys:
Listen: Dance for yourself
Mache is a hippie witch that was born under Beltane's full moon. She enjoys talking to ghosts and interdimensional beings, and cooking for her friends and beasts. She has Chilean wine in her veins instead of blood,and at the moment she belongs to China.