Re-Tros, Chairman Ca, Maybe Mars, Djang San, Gate To Otherside, Chui Wan, Carsick Cars, Birdstriking
Maybe Mars, Dear Eloise, Yaogun, Yang Haisong, Nevin Domer, Naomi Yang, Modern Sky
Cat #: 176TZM
Three years after releasing their debut album, White Night, Chui Wan brings their sophomore, self-titled album into the world.
Over the last few years, Chui Wan has progressed with a new drummer, Li Zichao, while its core members — bassist Wu Qiong, guitarist Liu Xinyu, and vocalist/multi-instrumentalist Yan Yulong — have striven to perfect their musical ideas. On Chui Wan, the focus is less on the unbridled, reverb-drenched inflections of White Night, drawing more from the band’s wide palette of influences, including Sufi music, Southeast Asian folk tunes, and 20th-century avant grade composition. With confident, driving rhythm, they aim to embody a pop-influenced idiom of rock music, creating their own musical language in the process. Beyond the infectious melodic hooks on Chui Wan lies a near-constant fluctuation of beat and tempo, a deliberate maneuver calculated to create a simultaneous sense of fluidity and disjuncture.
Compared with White Night, Chui Wan’s sophomore album is structurally more complicated, yet simpler and more direct in its studio approach. It eschews White Night’s complex, repeated overdubs and adds more intricate lyrical work, which reflects the dynamic of calm and tension that stands out in Chui Wan’s live performances.
Chui Wan’s guest musicians also contribute significantly to the album’s distinct temperament. You can hear the trademark noise guitar wails of psychedelic free improv master Li Jianhong on the album’s closing track, “Beijing Is Sinking”. The album also contains a hidden gift: a remix of the second track, “Estivation”, by Dead J, one of Beijing’s most established and progressive electronic music producers. Dead J’s “Estivation” remix is a minimal, ambient, rhythmically more angular take on the original.
It is also worth mentioning that Chui Wan bassist Wu Qiong lends her vocal abilities to “On the Other Ocean” and “Silence”. Her voice adds rich choral accents to the album, a long-player already brazen in its Baroque sonic ornamentations.
Chui Wan was recorded and produced by Yang Fan.
All songs written by Chui Wan, recorded in Beijing, in the winter of 2014.
Yan Yulong: vocals / guitar / violin / organ
Liu Xinyu: guitar / percussions
Wu Qiong: vocals / bass
Li Zichao: drums / celesta
Yang Fan / Li Qing: background vocals, “Only”
Li Jianhong: guitar, “Beijing is Sinking ”
Dead J: remix, “Estivation”
Recorded/mixed/produced by Yang Fan at Fan Fu Studios.
Mastered by Garrett Haines at Treelady Studios.
Cover art: Lv Junlin
Design: Ruan Qianrui
Chui Wan thanks everyone mentioned above, as well as: Josh Feola, Kai, CC Wang, Deng Chenglong, Liu Lu, Cao Lingfeng, Snapline, Yan Jun, Zhu Wenbo, Zhao Cong, Lu Wei, Li Ping, He Fan and Zhang Mengyao.
Misandao, Lei Jun, Yang Fan, Ourself Beside Me, Maybe Mars
Birdstriking, Maybe Mars, He Fan, Ricky Maymi
Cat #: 169TZM
Commemoration release for Tiananmen 1989.
Cat #: 134TZM
Low Wormwood’s 3rd album.
Cat #: 133TZM
AV Okubo’s 2nd album.
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:
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
Special thanks to Christian Fritz/mpls ltd, Nevin Domer/Genjing, Ricky and Stephen
Carsick Cars are:
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
The Gar, Subs