Colin Phils are returning from Richmond, Virginia to China to take in a huge national tour of the country. Best known for their magnificently intricate rhythm and gorgeous vocals, the group previously lived in Shenzhen and South Korea, so we guessed they knew their Chinese culture.
We put them to the test with a fun game of ‘regional would you rather?’, testing their tastes for zany food, drink and music from China and Southeastern US.
Would you rather...
...eat stinky tofu every day or souse (pork meat congealed into a fat loaf) every day?
Jon: Stinky tofu is healthy right? It actually tastes pretty good. I’m not sure if I’ve tried souse.
Ben: I also have not tried souse, but it sounds like we have some good food options on this tour now.
Karyn: I've never had souse, but stinky tofu smells like wet garbage. It's gotta be better than that.
...only drink moonshine or baijiu on your nights out?
Jon: I would rather drink anything than baijiu. It’s terrible. But to be fair, a few times someone offered me some ridiculously expensive baijiu and it wasn’t bad. It still had that off smell but went down smooth.
Karyn: Moonshine for sure. You can get like apple pie-flavored moonshine these day.
...only drink Chinese milk tea or southern sweet tea?
Ben: Chinese milk tea. Ben Mauch (our drummer) and I used to get that every day at lunchtime, a nice get away from work and I enjoy that taste.
Jon: I probably know more about South China culture and cuisine than American so I’m not sure what’s special about the sweet tea. I like that it doesn’t have milk. I’d go with that.
Karyn: I LOVE milk tea. I would have it at every meal if I could.
...only listen to popular country music or Mandopop?
Ben: I can’t say I like country. That fact alone forces me into Mandopop land.
Jon: Pop country. I can get down to some Zach Brown. I played in a cover band and we played some pop country and I kind of enjoyed it. I like some Mandarin songs but not really the pop.
Karyn: my dark secret is that I used to love country music. So it would be like going back to my roots. My high school crush was a dairy farmer's son, and I really got into the whole country scene.
...participate in Chinese firework catching or noodlin’ (catching catfish by sticking your bare hands in their mouth)?
Jon: I’d try noodling. It has the potential for a free dinner.
Ben: Definitely noodling. I’d rather not have my hands be destroyed by fireworks.
Karyn: I do love to blow things up, but catching a catfish with my hands sounds badass.
...only be able to use outhouses or squat toilets.
Jon: Depends on the condition of the outhouse. I like sitting and taking my time but not if I can’t breathe.
Ben: I have horror stories about squatty toilets. My outhouse experiences have been better, so I will go with that.
Karyn: I actually don't mind the squatty. I've mastered the technique, and you don’t have to touch anything. It seems less gross than an outhouse.
...eat possum stew or sheep penis?
Ben: I have zero experience here. Jon, I think you know more about this right? Based on names alone: possum stew has to win. Unless this is a trick question.
Jon: Is possum penis in the stew? How big of a sheep? How big of a possum? I think I would choose the option with the lesser amount of penis.
Karyn: I guess possum? I'm not in the habit of eating strange penises.
Catch the guys from Colin Phils when they come to your town:
Shanghai: Aug 3, 8.30pm; RMB80 presale, RMB100 door. Yuyintang. Tickets.
Beijing: Aug 7, 8.30pm; RMB80 presale, RMB100 door. School Bar. Tickets.
Shenzhen: Aug 23, 8.30pm; RMB80 presale, RMB100 door. Hou Live. Tickets.
Guangzhou: Aug 24, 8.30pm; RMB80 presale, RMB100 door. 191 Space. Tickets.
[Cover image via Colin Phils]