Carsick Cars – a great Chinese band

There’s a thriving music scene in Beijing, although I didn’t get to see any of it. Goldie was playing the night we left (December 23rd) and Zhang Shouwang, the guitarist from Beijing band Carsick Cars was doing a gig with his other project, ‘experimental rock band’ White+. I haven’t managed to track down anything by White+ but Carsick Cars are well worth checking out. They toured the US in 2009 on a sort of cultural exchange, and then split up, although the guitarist has continued under the same name.

Here’s their biggest hit, Zhongnanhai which is both the name of a top-selling Chinese cigarette brand and the name of the Chinese Communist Party compound. They do some tracks in English too, which you can find on YouTube, but I quite like not knowing what they’re on about!

In 2012 the UK Government is putting on a big promotion of UK music, art and culture in China. I’m not sure who or what we’re sending over, but I’m going to try to find out. Will we be sending the UK equivalent of Carsick Cars, or will it be something nice and safe and mega-selling?

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  • ridavaquas  On December 29, 2011 at 12:46 pm

    I am kind of thrilled that Carsick Cars gained a mention, I found them out when I was researching for a DT project in Year 7. They are pretty wonderful, aren’t they?

    I would love for UK to send something good, however, if party conference music of all parties is anything to go by, I’m not getting my hopes up.

    • kerrymccarthy  On December 29, 2011 at 1:49 pm

      Year 7? Isn’t that 11 year olds? You are too cool for your own good! And I don’t even know what DT is either.

  • tenzenmen (@tenzenmen)  On December 31, 2011 at 3:15 am

    discover more chinese music at (including the white cd – white+ coming soon too!)

  • kerrymccarthy  On December 31, 2011 at 8:14 am

    Great, thanks. So there’s a side project called White and another one called White+? A spin-off from the spin-off? Unfortunately I can’t listen to the White track without Flash (damn iPad!) but might take a chance and buy the lot.

  • josh  On January 5, 2012 at 4:02 am

    here’s a video of White+ performing at an event called The Creators Project in 2010:

    I’d also be keen to find out who the UK will send over! I am an American who is very active in the Beijing music scene, so cultural exchange along the lines of music is something I live every day. I hope more embassy types catch on that this form of “soft diplomacy” is a powerful tool for building cultural ties at the grassroots, youth culture level…

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