Before They Talked Their Fur Bespoke

This was a fun show that was a long while in the making, I’m sure. Mega big ups to Splitworks as usual.

Pairs led off the night with a trio performance that placed people’s expectations at odds with their experience, which is what any good band will do. At an earlier show we saw Skinny in the guitar position, but here he played purely a  percussive meme, as Pairs clearly toyed with their lineup, as well as the preconceptions that go along with notoriety. All to the better.

Duck Fight Goose are hard as a platypus’s bill. More information keeps coming in about their prospects, and most of it is good. It seems Handsome Furs want to be a bridge between Asia and North America, and DFG is riding the crest of that ambition. Representation on a Sub Pop compilation is within reach. I definitely count Duck Fight Goose as a Right Now band that should represent Chinese Indie Rock. When I watch them play I feel vindicated. That’s a pretty vulgar, narcissistic, and delusional statement, but there it is.

I applaud Handsome Furs for making a commitment to China and following through. It was great to see a band that actually seemed to enjoy and understand the scene, so much so that they came back for seconds with a vengeance. They came back on amid profuse, well-deserved fanfare. The gig was not as obscenely packed as a Yuyintang show can get, but the number of people who wanted to see the show exceeded the venue’s capacity. I watched the gig from the park’s back window, as well as from the stage door’s vestibule entrance.

Capacity problems notwithstanding, Handsome Furs put on a show their mothers could be proud of (assuming their mothers are cool.) I especially applaud them for bravely lolling around on the dingiest industrial carpets in town, like land-bound koi after the World Cup of fish feed-begging.

Bring the energy and Shanghai will respond in kind.

There may still be a need for yet another differently sized venue in Shanghai. Why not let a hundred flowers bloom? I’m thinking 500 people strong, enough to accommodate a large crowd, but not too big so as to make someone feel lonely.

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  1. Andy Best

    Brad said right from the beginning of the Mao creation that what we needed was another YYT not a huge venue. I think somewhere that can comfortably hold 400 would be about right.

  2. zack

    And for the new one, let’s put the bar somewhere where you can walk past it while people are trying to buy drinks. Can we do that?

  3. JohnG

    agree with Zack on this. As I wanted to stay a bit back from the chaos but still see the stage I was hanging on the edge of the bar. A good spot but still a bit cramped as people pushed by me about every 10 seconds or so.

  4. Archie

    Therein lies the joy and the bane of YYT. That tiny room means, when you actually get in, the best experiences rock and roll can give, but the bottlenecks mean less hardy souls never get to enjoy the most enjoyable shows.

    Still, we are lucky in a scene as young as ours to have such a variety of options…

  5. zack

    yeah, that’s true. it is a very intimate experience, but sometimes, no mater how hardy your soul, there is simply no way to reach the main area.

  6. Emma

    Tis true. I have been to a few YYT shows that remind me of the Japanese subway.

  7. zack

    Let’s hope they don’t have to institute male-only cars at YYT anytime soon. We had a good idea the other night. Why not break down the wall behind the stage, move the stage about 20 feet back, and fill in the walls, offering more space inside? I know it will probably not happen, but it’s an idea.


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