I must admit i’ve toned down the going out lately with the bar and a new job but i still try and make it to enough gigs out there to keep me entertained. Punk Night at the Old What Bar’s 11th year anniversary was one of those. I liked the bill even more because no bands were announced so it could have been dogs and cats howling at the moon for all i know. Thankfully, it was better than that.
I got there around 10:30 and just narrowly missed the first band so i took up a seat and conversation with Gao Bo over Yunnan Plum Liquor kept me busy while the next act was setting up. I hadn’t see Discord in years for whatever reason, not even at the punk festival but hey, they’re still around and still screaming/kicking.
The band put together a solid 40mn set with the crowd singing along, a testament to their longevity. And they kept it going louder and louder until they got to their favorite pleaser: “Beijing Power”. Even the folks sipping canned yanjing and small erguotou came in for this one. What can i say, it’s a fun band and it was the Old What… and they put on a good show wich is ultimately what i wanted.
The beauty of a night like that is that i had no idea what would be next and i like it… because the next act, Joking Tasty Band, had me hopping around those 20sqm for their whole set!! The quatuor had style, personality, could sing, play and they had a fiddle along with their punk. Now, my inner redneck gets giggly every time i see or hear and fiddle and these cats pulled off the songs well… so double whammy! They did a couple of covers i remember as well as a few songs in Chinese.. the cool thing though was their energy: They managed to keep everyone hopping and transition at will between punk and celtic folk sounds… i was a happy camper! still am…
More Joking Tasty 美味戏谑乐队
Ultimately, as much as I liked the bands and the music, what impressed me most was the mixed audience that somehow converged to the bar that night. I mean it was by no means jam packed but seeing a healthy mix of locals and expats rocking out on the side of the forbidden city is just something special
I’m looking forward to catching these cats again and i’ve been reminded that no matter how much i like my usual venues, sometimes, i still gotta get out there and check the rest.