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20081213_white005.jpg Shou Wang and Shen Jing from White. Photo by Matthew Niederhauser

The other night I met Shaun Hemsley, founder of the Australasian indie rock music label, tenzenmen. Shaun first went to China in 2001 and, after developing an interest in Beijing’s underground music scene, began helping tour bands travelling within and outside of China. Before he knew it he was one of a tiny number of non-Chinese people who knew about independent Chinese rock, and so he began tenzenmen in an effort to get its music out to a broader audience.

Tenzenmen now works closely with the Beijing-based label, Maybe Mars, an American run company attached to the venue D-22 where most of the Beijing rock and punk bands play. P.K.14, Xiao He, Carsick Cars, White and Joyside are some of their bigger acts, and you might recognise some of these names from recent tours overseas (P.K.14 played Melbourne Festival last year).

Stay tuned for more on Maybe Mars, the club, and the bands over the next few weeks. In the meantime, check out tenzenmen’s website, and have a listen to some of the music. A few tracks are also available to sample here.

Carsick Cars - Zhong Nan Hai by tenzenmen

P.K.14 - Wade the River by tenzenmen

Joyside - Sister Lunatic by tenzenmen

Low Wormwood - Music from the Womb by tenzenmen

White - Roswitha Strunk by tenzenmen


Hi Christen,
great. Can you do more about the Beijing music scene. I like the sound tracks as a way to get to know music you can't hear otherwise.

The next few posts will be about the Beijing rock scene - music, images and interviews. Watch this space ...

china has such a amazing thing happening right now

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Artspace China profiles Chinese visual arts, music and literature, presenting an overview of Chinese contemporary culture while also being a resource for specialised research. It is jointly sponsored by the University of Sydney China Studies Centre and Confucius Institute.

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