Double Jing Grunge Dose with Micoo & QingJiang

Last weekend was pretty alright gigwise with a whole slew of classics in town but the most interesting little gig i had the chance to catch was a dual grunge performance at 2 Kolegas sunday night by Nanjing’s Micoo and Beijing’s Qing Jiang.
Whomever thinks grunge is dead needs to get their head checked because there are a few decent bands doing in style all around China with Nucleus doing regular gigs all over town and these two new kids on the block. Well, new because i’ve never seen them before.

Qingjiang started the festivities around 9:30 to a pretty small audience of about 20 people but they played like they had 100 out there. It was decent clean grunge with solid guitar playing and more than acceptable drums. The band looked like they were having fun on stage playing to their friends.. and that’s what they were doing I guess. The sound is definitely Nirvana inspired with that distinctive guitar hook-mixed-with-distortion.
I’m not the biggest grunge fan out there but these cats kept me interested for a good 30 minutes before I started wondering where i heard the songs before. Like I mentioned above, heavy Nirvana inspiration!

Micoo came up next and proceeded to play for what seemed like an eternity and that’s not a bad thing! Where Qingjiang was good, Micoo was exceptional! They made it to Beijing in support of their newly released album that I haven’t had a chance to listen to yet but looking forward to popping it into itunes. How can i describe these kids? Calling them grunge is slightly misleading because they combine elements of grunge/rock/punk and do a pretty good job mashing them up. Their sound is reminiscent of the early Temple of the Dog record and/or the combined Neil Young/Pearl Jam stuff.
I really really really enjoyed listening to them… At some point halfway through the show, the bass player’s strap broke, then he just kneeled and kept playing for a good 20 minutes high octane bass strapless. Once they got done playing their own songs, they decided to jump into a little cover time going through some grunge classics by Alice in Chain and Nirvana much to the delight of everyone else in town
The lead singer was very charismatic and the guitar played effective if nothing else! Really nice kids from Nanjing… the sound is well polished and follows in the line of early Xie Tian Xiao / Cold Blooded Animals. Definitely Check them out if you get a chance!

Micoo on Douban:
Qing Jiang on Douban:

I look forward to seeing both bands rock out to a bigger audience soon!

4 Responses

  1. Josh Feola says:

    I saw Micoo at D-22 on saturday, also really enjoyed them. Looking forward to listening to the cd $17, funny name, wonder if that’s a joke to make people think that’s the price?

  2. Chery says:

    I’m afraid I can’t agree with your perspective (except that Qing Jiang IS heavily influenced by Nirvana, but then again, who isn’t?… 🙂 Songs on both bands’ Douban pages sound pop-cored. But don’t take me wrong. Like most of the kids who grew up in a Karaoke culture, they know what sounds good to the ordinary ears, which is actually pretty smart. But I somehow just wish new bands nowadays can focus less on “playing safe” and rock a little more with balls. You said they rocked live, so I look forward to be proved wrong…

  3. Beijing Daze says:

    The songs are definitely polished and clean. I actually like that! Maybe it’s the fact that I’ve listened to too much crap over the past few years and now I got excited when a band can get the basic rights. Too many of these so called artists running around Beijing are noting but over glorified garage bands that lack musical ability.

    yes, indeed, Micoo’s songs definitely lack “balls” but judging from their live performance, I think they’ll eventually get somewhere! Just the fact that they pulled off a 90 minutes set on their own is already a huge ups in my book.

    p.s: I don’t even like grunge :p

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