Happy Chinese New Year!

Happy Chinese New Year!

We're currently in the midst of music festival deluge. Much of Auckland is sleepwalking today after a weekend at Parachute or Raggamuffin, and a Monday at Laneway. And I've heard good reports from all. Watch out for upcoming performance reviews soon.

It's the legendary Year of the Dragon, which could mean for a year of firey, fast and heavy musical creation. To celebrate and welcome the new year in, I have taken on the challenge of finding some interesting and good quality Chinese rock. Some may say that's an oxymoron, but there does exist some great stuff within the great red wall of the People's Republic...

Beijing Bubbles is a documentary on local Chinese punk culture. It was a popular at the film festival a few years ago, and their website lists a number of bands worth checking out, including:

Joyside

Sha Zi

Hang On The Box

The entire documentary seems to be online, but here's a clip from YouTube for now:

And for something a bit more local, check out PAIRS!

Pairs are from China, but currently touring New Zealand. Follow the link above for their Bandcamp page, and interview links. THEY ARE PLAYING A SECRET SHOW IN AUCKLAND TOMORROW NIGHT. Keep watching their Twitter feed.

And finally, what I'm really looking forward to this weekend: The Auckland Chinese Lantern Festival. Not just for the amazing lights through Albert Park but most of all the food, especially those ice creams with nuts wrapped in rice paper. Best dessert ever.

Important information from the NZ Herald:
Chinese dumplings are a popular lantern festival food and there will be dumpling stalls as well as red bean cakes and barbecue pork buns for sale at the festival. Food from Hong Kong, Taiwan, Malaysia, Thailand, Japan and Vietnam will be sold as will a South Pacific take on the traditional food. Fresh coconuts will be available to drink.

Tea ceremonies will also be held nearby at Maclaurin Chapel Hall at the University of Auckland and you can enter competitions to win trips to Asia.

In the Year of the Dragon, the most highly anticipated year of the Chinese zodiac, you might just be lucky enough to win.

The Auckland Lantern Festival runs from February 3-5, from 5pm-10.30pm each evening, at Albert Park, Princes St, Auckland City.

The Auckland Art Gallery will be open late on the nights of the Lantern Festival, with extended hours to 10pm.

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