3 New China Albums to Listen to This Month

By Bryan Grogan, March 5, 2020

0 0

Here are three new homegrown albums from musicians around China on our radar this month.


1. Escape by L.Y.Li

l.y.jpg

The artist formerly known as Diva Li (maybe) returns to Beijing-based label Ran Music with her first-ever 12-inch vinyl EP, adopting a new name, L.Y.Li, based on her given name, Li Luo Yi. Well-known in Chinese music circles – specifically around Beijing – for her emotional techno and previous releases on Ran Music’s sublabel Ran Groove, Li is currently based out of Chengdu. Li opens the record on a strong note with ‘Chasing the Sun,’ with thick, looping beats propelling the EP forward. ‘Escape’ is similarly deep and dark, with thin, iridescent synths and indistinct vocal samples combining to create a colorful and absorbing track. ‘Lost Inside’ is based around a central drum machine and jagged beat, undulating enjoyable, addictive ease for six minutes. The record, while well-produced, feels very much based within the club, taking L.Y.Li’s strengths as a DJ into account as much as her production skills.

Click here or scan the QR code to listen:

MusicCornerL.Y.Li.png


2. Diaphanous White by EndlessWhite

endlesswhite.jpg

Hazy indie group EndlessWhite, based out of northern city Xi’an, are back with their first multi-track release since 2018’s excellent Flow West to You. Accompanied by a poetic description that reads, in part, “This time I am finally transparent,” Diaphanous White is typically emotional, using the fantastical vocals of singer Zhang Wanyi to shed facades and disguises. Opening track ‘Best Wish’ clocks in at just over two minutes, and is quite a civilized affair, laying down the framework for the rest of the record. ‘923.9km’ works in a similar way, although allowing Zhang to extend her vocals a bit more. ‘Shouxian shi ni, ranhou cai shi yiqie’ breaks open preceding impressions, however, with the pleasant kerplunking of the guitars on the first two tracks replaced by a much rawer sound. The final track is the longest on the record, ‘My Little Perfect World,’ which is a gorgeous, well-paced and ambient piece, combining a lot of the facets explored in the record’s previous four tracks, closing the album in breathtaking fashion.

Click here or scan the QR code to listen:

MusicCornerEndlessWhite.png


3. Metamorphosis by Laughing Ears

Laughing-Ears.jpg

Shanghai producer Laughing Ears has been turning heads. With a release lined up on Australian label DECISIONS, run by Air Max ’97, dropping in mid-February, she started off 2020 strong with this six-track release on London-based outfit Chinabot in late January. Now armed with releases by the likes of FunctionLab, Ran Music and the above-mentioned labels, Laughing Ears is steadily and productively carving out quite the reputation in underground electronic scenes. Metamorphosis continues the producer’s tradition of using single-word, expansive titles for her songs. ‘Resistance’ is glitchy and experimental, playing with textures that intersect seamlessly. Elsewhere, crystalline synths interact with dull, thick string sounds on ‘Gravitation.’ The record as a whole builds on and continues Laughing Ears’ interest in unique, cinematic soundscapes, exhibiting just how much she has improved in a very short period of time.

Click here or scan the QR code to listen:

MusicCornerLaughingEars.png

[Cover image via L.Y.Li/Bandcamp]

more news

Jesse Warren Talks Shenzhen Music and New Mettasonic Releases

We caught up with musical maestro Jesse Warren to chat about two upcoming Mettasonic releases, 'Made in Shenzhen EP' and 'Mettā Muzik, Vol 3.'

Conflicting Tides: Digital Streaming and Live Music in China

Consumption of digital music in China is growing rapidly. But does this growth come at a loss for the live music industry?

Cruel Buddhist Talks Making Music with ADHD and Sketching Songs

We linked up with American producer Cruel Buddhist to chat about his process.

Introduce Your Little Ones to Art & Music at this Magical Event

'One Starry Night: Out of the Blue' is the perfect way to introduce your kids to the world of art, music and culture.

4 Online Music Shows to Jam Out With On Valentine's Day

Online music streams are moving in the age of the novel coronavirus.

Gavin Wong Talks Online Radio, Hong Kong Music and Driving Scenes Forward

We spoked to Hong Kong Community Radio founder Gavin Wong about the importance of online radio stations in China's music scene.

PHOTOS: Yuyintang Live Music Awards 2019

Storied Shanghai live music venue Yuyintang celebrated its 15th anniversary in January with its first-ever live music awards ceremony.

Cloak Radio Founder Bl1nk Talks Chengdu Music and Radio Culture

Cloak radio founder Bl1nk has been witness to seismic change in the Chengdu underground.

0 User Comments

In Case You Missed It…

We're on WeChat!

Scan our QR Code at right or follow us at Thats_Shanghai for events, guides, giveaways and much more!

7 Days in Shanghai With thatsmags.com

Weekly updates to your email inbox every Wednesday

Subscribe

Download previous issues

Never miss an issue of That's Shanghai!

Visit the archives

Get the App. Your essential China city companion.