I’ve criticized Voodoo Kungfu just as much as I bathed them with praise in the past, Much like their charismatic leader, I was not willing to settle with anything less than greatness from them. Tell you what folks, 2 weeks ago, as they delivered their last performance ever to a packed Mao Livehouse, they were at the top of their game. Put it this way: words that could describe the power, intensity and overall feeling of that night do not exist.. I can’t think of any that would do them justice!
To say Mao Live was packed would be an understatement… it was a death-pit and a catastrophy waiting to happen but no one cared! The 600+ faithful that gathered to pay their tribute to one of the most charismatic figures and entities that graced the Yaogun Scene. The place was covered in small chunks of paper carrying calligraphy. Those were hanging on the ceilings, on the instruments, thrown on the stage, into the audience etc… The place was packed by 8:30 even though the band didn’t start until much after 9:30.. it didn’t matter, it was the calm before the storm!
and as soon as the band came on stage, the storm was unleashed!
Last time i experienced such fury, emotion, passion, madness, love and more was when Exodus graced Beijing with their presence.. if that one was intense folks, Voodoo Kungfu’s last gig was nothing short of cataclysmic! And NOOOOOOO!! I am not overstating: from the first Tibetan hymn, the first drumbeat until the last screeshing howl, the audience moshed, screamed, pushed and shoved their way around the pit as if they were possessed by some Voodoo spirit, and I’m not saying they were not! They sang along to every song during a show that was pretty much a recap of the band’s discography. Who needs an opening act when the headliner can go for almost 2 hours like they did?
If the audience was possessed, you can try imagining how the band was: They were tense, intense, playing with a determination and purpose that was lacking from their previous show! Li Na matched every concert goers in intensity and raised them ten-fold. He prowled the stage growling, screeching, screaming and singing like only he can. Shenzi Jun 申子俊, the drummer, reached deep within like i’ve never seen him do before! He carried his emotions through his drumsticks and boy did they come out loud. Nico, on bass, looked like he was using whatever strength he could still muster to control his emotion whereas Xiaoliang 李晓亮, the newest addition to the band, couldn’t help falling to his emotions.
if the word “emotions” seems to appear a lot, that’s because it was really what the night was about. Band, audience or Mao Live staff throwing water and ice cubes into the bubbling overheated audience was all about emotion… If you were there, you know! If you were not, I’m sorry because you missed a rare opportunity to see what rock n roll can be.
Li Na promised that at the end of the show, he would get the number of people that came in tattooed live onstage… the sick motherfucker that he is did… inside his freaking lip and waved goodbye without telling the audience what it was, no matter how loud they begged… come to think of it, throughout the whole show, the whole band didn’t say a word to the audience! They didn’t need to! If I gotta go someday, that’s how i would love to go out!
Thank you Voodoo Kungfu, Thank you Li Na, Thank you Nico, Thank you Xiaoliang and thank you Shenzi Jun ( who blew me away that night)!! You made me feel again
…and Berklee, your gain is our loss! treat it well!