Upcoming gigs

By Sun Shuangjie Source:Global Times Published: 2014-9-4 17:48:01

Performances include Japanese math rock band

XXYY new album release

Formed in 2012, British band XXYY (which stands for Xiaoxinyiyi, Chinese for "be discreet"), has been an active force in the city's rock scene. Featuring Mike Herd on guitar and vocals, Mike Bush on bass and Jaret Shank on drums, XXYY's punk rock speaks of everyday life in the city. Recently, the band condensed their two-year exploration into a new album, PM 250. On September 13, the band will celebrate the release at Yuyintang. The Global Times spoke to the band about the album and their sound. 

GT: Why did you name your band Xiaoxinyiyi?

Bush: The name started out as just a cool idea, but eventually was a joke about how crazy we actually are and that we are not very discreet. These days we just call ourselves XXYY. Herd: I had recently learned the phrase Xiaoxinyiyi from a foreigner friend with excellent Chinese and it kind of stuck in my head. Figuring this would be a pretty interesting and unique name, I chose to run with that for this project, but we pretty much never use "be discreet" these days - it naturally evolved into XXYY for simplicity but we still keep the full Chinese name for Chinese social media.

The cover of XXYY's new album PM 250 Photo: Courtesy of Ivan Belcic

GT: What inspired the new album, and how long did it take to record?

Bush: We have been playing shows since 2012 and we finally found a sound that mixed all of our musical styles together. We all bring different influences to the band, which creates a fairly unique sound. The end product leans mostly toward mid-1990s punk, and so that is what we label ourselves as. After nailing down our sound, and writing new material to reflect that style, we felt it was time to share it with the universe. We recorded the album over two days at 72 Studios, but have been preparing for this moment since the fall of the dinosaurs and the emergence of mankind.

GT: What's the album about? 

Bush: The title of the album is a play on words. Because of the awful air quality last year, we were going to name the album PM 2.5 but I pointed out that it would be funnier to call it PM 250 as 250 is slang for idiot in Chinese. There are 10 fast-paced, high-energy, punk rock tracks on the album.

GT: What do you think are the defining qualities of your band?

Bush: We are the funniest band in town for sure. If you come to see our show, you will sing, jump, laugh your butt off, punch the air, breathe fire, drink whisky, become immortal, and poop your pants.

Herd: We are what we are - what you see is what you get and our songs really demonstrate the best in each of us as musicians. I think what comes across is the collaboration between us and I feel that if anyone comes to the practice with an idea, we all work hard to make it the best we can.

BooshKaBaash Music Festival

This Saturday at Qianshuiwan Culture Center, the well-known BooshKaBaash Music Festival returns to celebrate the indie spirit by bringing together acts from Shanghai and other major cities around the world.


From 2 pm to 10 pm, two stages - one in the indoor theater on the second floor and one on the open-air platform - will be graced by a plethora of bands, among them My Little Airport (pictured above) from Hong Kong, Blue Hawaii from Montreal, The Cairos from Brisbane and Tempers (pictured below) from New York.


"For the headliners we always try and get a diverse selection. Everything from rock to electronica … with the emphasis being on them having a great live show. We had been talking to My Little Airport for a while about coming out, glad that we were finally able to make it happen," said Abram Deyo, an organizer of the festival.

My Little Airport, an indie pop duo made up of Lam Pang and Au Kin-ying, has impressed audiences with their lighthearted melodies and audacious lyrics that address concerns both personal and political. In 2011, Hong Kong-based culture magazine Muse named the band Hong Kong's "Next Big Thing" cultural heroes of that year.

Besides the music performances, a community market will also be held at the venue, with students from Raffles Design Institute in Shanghai showcasing their creative designs. The outdoor stage and market are open to all for no entrance charge.

An after party will be held at 390 Shanghai, (390 Panyu Road, 6431-2353) where three groups of DJs will take turns on the decks until the early hours of the morning.

Date: Saturday, 2 pm to 10 pm

Venue: Qianshuiwan Culture Center 浅水湾文化艺术中心

Address: 179 Yichang Road


Tickets: 140 yuan for presale and 180 yuan at door

Call 6266-1110 for details

Date: September 13, 9 pm

Venue: Yuyintang 育音堂

Address: 851 Kaixuan Road


Tickets: 40 yuan ($6.48)

Call 5237-8662 for details

Toe at Mao Livehouse

Featuring Takashi Kashikura on drums, Satoshi Yamane on bass guitar, and Takaaki Mino and Hirokazu Yamazaki on guitars, Japanese band Toe has become one of the most popular Japanese math rock bands since their establishment in 2000.

A poster for Japanese band Toe Photos: Courtesy of the event organizers

Displaying their versatile skills, the band creates melodies over flexible and intricate changes in rhythm. UK music website musicalmathematics.co.uk said Toe's music was "thought-provoking and sophisticated," while absolutepunk.net spoke highly of their "quirky yet catchy rhythmic pulses, spot on songwriting" when Topshelf Records in Boston released their EP The Future is Now in 2012.

Date: Friday, 8:30 pm

Venue: Mao Livehouse

Address: 3/F, 308 Chongqing Road South


Tickets: 160 yuan for presale and 200 yuan at door

Call 6445-0086 for details

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