Monthly Archives: October 2008

Another week of work at the wiki behind us

What happened? We interviewed The Swamp, Guangzhou-based indie rockers, we got contacted by a Polish researcher on Chinese rock, contacted Fly Fast Records for more information on their release plans and worked ourselves through the PhD thesis of Qian Wang, extracting infos on bands, records and interviews from the 90s. We found (once again) the Brainfailure website of David O’Dell, on which numerous mp3 are made available and you can find old (and I mean old) photos and articles about the start of the punk scene in Beijing, and we welcomed two new members two our wiki community:

Yeo, friend of The Swamp, helping us on their biography

Muertos, friend of RiC and correspondant of the Painkiller Heavy Music Magazine, supporting us by adding further bands from the Metal Archives China pages

Thanks to you two!!!

Rock on!!!

— Azchael


Investigating the Kaiping festival in Guangzhou

In a followup interview with The Swamp, Rock in China is investigating the Kaiping music festival, which was supposingly held for the first time in 1996 in the tower city of Kaiping.

Azchael: Thanks once again for helping me to figure out about the Kaiping festival. What is the Kaiping festival? Who is organizing it and where can I get more information (website / email)?

Hai Liang: We held this music festival in Kaiping city, and so it comes the name.

In the very beginning, it was organized and held by our band, and some friends working at the radio station and television station.

As one of the backbones, we kept in organized this festival for many years. The latest one was the 6th Kaiping music festival.

Actually, there are plenty of large scale music concerts and festivals in Guangdong but few gives first place to indie musicians or rock bands. Since 1996, Kaiping music festival was held with the purpose of providing them with a chance to play, which still has special significance in Guangdong today. However, it cannot go on due to many different kinds of factors. We still wish to hold this festival again in the future. [Read more…]

The interview session has started on October 26th 2008 and is going to continue for a few weeks in regular intervalls.

Interview with The Swamp

Rock in China interviewed Guangzhou indie-rock band “The Swamp“, talking about their latest releases, their recent tours, their plans for the next year and what they think of South China’s rock scene. Interview host was Azchael and from The Swamp did Hai Liang answer all our questions.

The Interview

Azchael: The Swamp, rock band from Guangzhou, formed in 1993, electronic, post-rock, psychedelic music. In short that the band I’m conducting an interview with and I am very happy to have the chance to ask this legends of Guangzhou some questions. First of all, could you maybe shortly introduce yourself and give me a brief introduction, how you came together as The Swamp and how you’ve developed in the last few years.

Hai Liang: The Swamp was formed in my university in the very beginning. Only Roy (the bass player) and I were the band members. It was not until 1997 that my younger brother Sean joined us and played as the drummer. At that time, Jim studied in middle school and learned to play guitar from me. We four often gave performance together. Till the year 2000, The Swamp formally came into being…

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Download three Wang Wen albums

As posted by the band itself, Wang Wen has made three of their albums available for download.

Download link

Available albums:

Wiki info on the record

Wiki info on the record

Wiki info on the record

Official MySpace of Wang Wen:

Rock on!!!


Interview with Hedgehog

Up online for a little while, but still new, fresh and worth looking out.

Azchael: Would you describe yourself as a Chinese artist or a rock artist?

Hedgehog: Maybe chinese rock artist. Beijing is the cultural and international center of china, at here we have more chance to touch rock music, when we are 15 we listen to some great bands from abroad like nirvana, blur and so on. You know, in China there are also many traditional music and the history of music in china is so long, as hedgehog, melody are more influenced by the old chinese music, style are more influenced by modern rock bands.

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Morgan Short writing for SmartShanghai / if you need music info in Shanghai, read him

Remember Small Swords Magazine writer Morgan Short with whom Rock in China had a brief cooperation phase, exchanging interview articles (e.g. No Name). We havent heard of him in a long time and to be honest, havent really looked too much in the Shanghai scene lately (despite short intermezzos with YuYinTang), but it seems Morgan didnt stop writing, but rather taking up the pen and posting over a 100 new posts at Smart Shanghai.

Diving into his articles, I found a lot of insider news, well-written articles, elaborate interviews and tons of info that Shanghai-based rock fans need to know. So, if you are living in Shanghai and feel not informed enough about whats going on, join SmartShanghai and get your share of event information right from Morgan.

Daily work on Rock in China – a report by Azchael

One of the first reliefs one feels after having finished his studies and after having graduated from university, is the loss of this burden on one’s own shoulders, this burden to study, to always have in mind that there is this bachelor thesis waiting for one to sit down and go on writing, this burden to feel guilty when one have not studied for another hour or two.

Finally that feeling has left me, that burden is gone. With entering the work life, the evenings suddenly are not spent in books and formulas, but are rather spent as one’s own desire. And my present desire has been mostly occupied by Rock in China and the extension of our present knowledge base.

Where are we nowadays?

– We started off a few years ago with nothing but plain HTML files, a few javascript ideas and a lot of enthusiams. Today, two of those three things are gone and what is left is our enthusiams to report about that underground scene in China. HTML and javascript became Wiki and these days I spent my nights in front of the computer hacking into our wiki system such information as rock festival schedules, lineups and reviews from 1998 to today. I didnt know that there had been a rock festival in Guilin 2005 and I am still trying to figure out what exactly those Kaiping festivals are I found in the biography of The Swamp.

And as Rock in China is one of the media partners of the Midi Music Festival, we have also started to build up the Midi knowledge in our wiki. Not only the last two festivals should be presented with in-depth details, but also those, most foreigners have NOT been to: 2000-2005. It’s difficult to find information in the web, but luckily our friends at the Midi school are helping us out as far as possible. Yet in the meantime we are gathering a lot of review information from Chinese media giants, who have featured nearly every big festival since 2004. A lot of introductions, photos, reviews and additional source material (in Chinese).

Despite translating Chinese websites and entering the info in English, a lot of new data is created as well. Nearly every day a new interview request of mine is leaving my mailbox, asking bands, organizers, promoters or club owners to state a few sentences about the rock scene.

In addition to that, Rock in China has recently joined the collector’s club, i.e. we have submitted a huge chunk of our rock collection to the University of Heidelberg to include a copy of our collection into their research database and to make them available for fellow researchers and students. Cross-linkage to our wiki with cross-information referencing is going to happen as soon as the copy process has been finished.

We are not standing still, Rock in China keeps on rolling!

Rock on!!!