Artist: The Gar
Album: The Gar
Label: Maybe Mars Records
This is the self-titled debut of Beijing-based indie rock band The Gar. Formed in 2007 by ex-The Naza singer Zhan Pan, the band's presence was felt almost immediately in the Beijing scene. After 6 months of shows around China, the band entered the studio to begin work on their debut release for Maybe Mars Records. In early 2009, over a year after they began recording, the album was finally released to widespread critical acclaim. Recently the band have also toured with Carsick Cars and have begun to get some recognition from the press outside of their native China.
The Beijing indie scene is now pretty firmly established, and alongside Shanghai is the major music/art/culture capital of China. I've been listening to Beijing indie rock stuff for a while now, and while a great deal of the bands are simply doing bland copies of western music, there are a few acts that really stand out. The Gar definitely fall into the latter category. This record in particular straddles the barrier between densely textured shoegaze and melodic post-punk, while retaining a somewhat carefree vibe that seems to run through the album.
1) Sea Birds