谁他妈抽了我的中南海? – 26th February 2020

“a parent catching her child with cigarettes and forcing him to smoke the whole pack.”

Despite my father dying of lung cancer when I was a baby, my mother kept smoking for another 15 to 20 years after, then gave up in her early 60s and lived for another 20 years, though she suffered from COPD in the last 5 or so years which restricted her a lot.

I grew used to her smoking though I actually have no real memory of her puffing on a cigarette. Of course it was only natural her naughty son would steal an occasional cigarette, find a way to light it and go off down the end of the garden and practice smoking. I could be an adult too.

It was a great game. Waiting for my mother to leave her packet unattended, gradually sneaking a couple more each time. I was never caught but I’m guessing she knew. When I had upgraded to smoking in my bedroom I would get caught once or twice and my mum just tutted and asked where I got the cigarettes from to which I would guiltily lie. She couldn’t really say much without looking like a hyprocrite.

I also upgraded to stealing my grandfather’s beer which he kept stored in an outdoor shed. I loved the feeling alcohol gave me. I also remember being able to open my gullet so the liquid went straight down without gulping. A talented 13 year old I was becoming.

When my mum gave up smoking I had already started earning my own money and had developed my own addiction. I was proud of her giving up. I still hated myself too much to try. It wasn’t until much later when my son was born that I eventually stopped and that took a huge effort. At that point I was still secretly smoking at work and stuffing down packets of mints so my wife wouldn’t detect it. But eventually I stopped.

I still have dreams about that and sometimes I hit lucidity within the dream and wonder about the fact that I still smoke sometimes. It’s a weird feeling. I really hate the smell of burning cigarettes now and try to avoid going to bars and restaurants where smoking is permitted, something which is still common throughout Asia.

If the Chinese want to make a silent protest towards their government they should surely quit smoking and stop that tax money ending up in the pockets of their leaders! But cigarettes are like a handshake there, a different cultural definition.

Anyways, I was never forced to smoke a whole pack of cigarettes fortunately, though everyone knew the story of some kid that it had been forced upon. Did it ever happen or is it just urban legend?

This is England….

Gratitude Journal

I am so happy and grateful that I could quickly get over an injustice towards me.
I am so happy and grateful that I don’t have to teach today because the students are doing exams.

Carsick Cars – 3 LP – 20th April 2014

Cat #: 159TZM

NOTE: CD has alternate language versions to the vinyl and different bonus tracks in the download!

After five restless years, Carsick Cars, China’s most influential and dynamic indie-rock band, return with their most mature and exciting release to date.

Available in April 2014, ‘3’ is the aptly titled third album for the Beijing based trio. ‘3’ sees vocalist, guitarist and founding member Zhang Shouwang return with his signature sound, seamlessly combining drone with shimmering pop melodies. The result is assured to please established fans and new listeners alike.

Carsick Cars/Flavor Crystals – 19th April 2014

Cat #: 150TZM

On the flip side, Minneapolis psych-rock vets, Flavor Crystals, offer up Mirror in My Mind, a drone smeared, carefully considered, morotik ripper that mines the depths of exploratory shoegaze with aplomb, not unlike an auditory visage of one of Frederik van Eeden’s exercises in lucid dreaming. The band’s most recent full length release, a triple LP psych monster, coincidentally titled Three [Mpls. Ltd.], may well be one of the more criminally overlooked wax platters of the past couple years – self-engineered and produced by the band following a lengthy US tour in support of like-minded sonic sojourners, The Brian Jonestown Massacre, Three captures Flavor Crystals in a vulnerable, metacognitive state and the results are nothing short of staggering! 

Flavor Crystals are:
Josh Richardson
Nat Stensland
Vince Caro
Jon Menke

Special guests on this recording:
Ricky Maymi: drums, blender guitar
Stephen Lawrie: percussion, oscillations

Produced by Ricky Maymi
Recorded by Nat Stensland
Nov-Dec 2013 in Minneapolis
Mixed with Neil Weir at Old Blackberry Way
Mastered by Bruce Templeton

Copyright 2014 Flavor Crystals
ASCAP/Sterling Songs

Special thanks to Christian Fritz/mpls ltd, Nevin Domer/Genjing, Ricky and Stephen

——————–

Carsick Cars are:
Shouwang Zhang
Fan He
Heting Sun

Produced by Sonic Boom (Pete Kember) & Hamish Kilgour
Recorded by Matt Boynton
April 2013 in Vacation Island Recording Studio, NYC
Mixed by Ping Li at Busy Bee, Beijing
Mastered by Joe LaPorta at Sterling Sound

Special thanks to Nevin Domer and Ricky Maymi

Carsick Cars – 3 CD – 19th April 2014

Cat #: 158TZM

NOTE: CD has alternate language versions to the vinyl and different bonus tracks in the download!

After five restless years, Carsick Cars, China’s most influential and dynamic indie-rock band, return with their most mature and exciting release to date.

Available in April 2014, ‘3’ is the aptly titled third album for the Beijing based trio. ‘3’ sees vocalist, guitarist and founding member Zhang Shouwang return with his signature sound, seamlessly combining drone with shimmering pop melodies. The result is assured to please established fans and new listeners alike.

‘3’ began with an auspicious start as preview single ‘She Will Wait’ shot to the top position on China’s leading music sharing website, Douban. For this reason among others, ahead of it’s launch in Australia, ‘3’ is already being hailed as one of the most important Chinese records of the decade. Zining Cui of Creative Asia, China’s premier platform for contemporary arts, stated that “China needs a big enough sound to shout out for attention – and Carsick Cars remind us of such a sound.”

Retaining the lineup of the all too brief 2012 Australian East Coast tour, Shouwang, bassist He Fan and drummer Sun Heting travelled to New York to record ‘3’ with producers Peter Kember (Spacemen 3, Sonic Boom) and Hamish Kilgour (The Clean), leaders in indie/psychedelic rock circles. Australian fans of Sino-American sounds and aesthetics will appreciate the cover art by renowned Beijing/Californian contemporary artist Guo Hongwei.

The record, the first full length to be released by the current members, is a logical progression for long standing fans of Carsick Cars. ‘3’, however, starkly contrasts in maturity and complexity from the band’s straight ahead noise-pop self titled debut in 2005. There are a few tracks reminiscent of well known singles from their prior two albums (most notably ‘Reaching The Light’), but most disparate is how ‘3’ showcases the extraordinary technical skill of Shouwang as a guitarist and the potential born from the unity of these three musicians.

While Carsick Cars wind up their lengthy United States tour with psych-drone five-piece Flavour Crystals, ‘3’ will be released in Australia on CD and LP on April 14th through Australasian DIY music specialist tenzenmen. Each format features variations on recording, bonus tracks and lyrics which promises to satisfy Australian fans until Australian tour dates are confirmed. Pre-orders with immediate downloads are available from today at tenzenmen.com .

Also look out for the Flavour Crystals/Carsick Cars split 7” featuring exclusive track ‘Yoko’ available on tenzenmen this month.

“It is pretty clear that this album, probably the most sophisticated the band has yet put out, will also be the most accessible and loved of their work to date” – Zining Cui – Creative Asia

“[This song] has the ability to become an instant indie rock hit. Play it loud and you’ll be singing along by the time the chorus hits.” – Dan Jarvis – Midwest Action!

“3 was well worth the wait. Singer/Guitarist Zhang Shouwang has managed to retain the same energy the band had in their early days, and with the help of bassist He Fan & drummer Sun Heting, they’ve put that energy into what is easily their best album to date.” – Dan Jarvis – Midwest Action! 

Recorded in New York, March 2013.
Producers: Peter Kember (Sonic Boom) & Hamish Kilgour
Cover art by: Guo Hongwei, cover designed by Zhan Pan