Friday, May 26, 2006

Chinese Dissident mp3 Downloads

Pangu, a band from Jiangxi Province, continues to release and re-release music through free downloads from exile in Sweden. The latest, "The People Are All Sick" (全民皆病) is available here and features songs written between 1995 and 2000, the time when the band became known. You'll need WinRar software to decompress it.

There's still a lot of debate as to how "good" Pangu are or were, and listening don't expect to hear any sort of consitency between tracks and more than one musical idea per song. This album is mostly good because it's rough and full of anger like you will almost never fucking hear coming through any garage-quality demo, which is about what this is. It's mostly bad because it's shit. If you ask kids in China about Pangu, you'll hear either bitter resentment or that this band was hugely influential, both testaments to a certain landmark status they achieved in China's rock scene in the late 1990s. If they can avoind being completely supressed by China's Mind Police, and they might, they will have a few lasting songs but will be mostly remembered for what they dared to say.

Here's how they - I presume this is the band's lead singer, guitar player and general mouthpiece Ao Bo - introduce the album:
Pangu’s “The People Are All Sick” was one of three albums recorded in Guilin in May 2001. The three albums are "Lethal Music", "The People Are All Sick," and "Truth" (as in, “Pangu is the only standard for measuring the truth.”) The three albums were all recorded in three days and 42 songs were recorded in total. After deleting a few songs that weren’t up to scratch, the rest were all put onto these three albums.

In the essay “Pangu-ism” I’ve already basically described the feelings after recording these three albums. Here is an extract:

“…what’s comforting to me is that this time we were finally able to record a lot of songs about people. There’s “How Will One Mad Woman Be Enough” (一個瘋女人怎么夠); “Dragon Snake of Da-ze” (大澤龍蛇) was written for Chen Sheng (陳勝) and Wu Guang (吳廣)[ 1]; “Damn Wages” (死工資) was written for those laborers who haven’t received any wages for a long time; “The People Are All Sick” (全名皆病) was written for the people of this huge society; “Now That The Tragedy Has Been Born, Let’s Not Let It End” (悲劇既然誕生,就不要讓它結束) was written for Yu Luoke, Lee Jiulian, Zhang Zhixin, and Zhong Haiyuan [2]; “A Shameful Sound” (可恥的聲音) commemorates the more than 300 souls who died in a fire in the city of Karamay [Xinjiang]; and “Beasts” (畜生) is for those people who are less than animals.”

Yan Haiguang (殷海光)[3] said: “From ancient times till now, it is the people who bear, and what they bear are the rulers.” ---I can’t bear rulers, and I can’t bear the people either. I can’t bear the rulers’ rule and can’t bear that the people don’t resist.

What I want to say to the people of China is this: If you do not initiate resistance, then when others are successful in helping you resist or resisting for you, you will only become their slaves. I really cannot bear it. People. You have to resist. No one can help you or do it for you. If you try to strike some bargain so you dont' have to resist, then you will be slaves forever.

[1] During the Qin Dynasty (221-206 BC), Chen Sheng and Wu Guang led an uprising in Da-ze County, Henan Province to establish the China’s first ever peasant government.
[2] Yu Luoke (遇洛克), Lee Jiulian (李九蓮), Zhang Zhixin (李九蓮) and Zhong Haiyuan (鐘海源) were all executed by the Chinese Communist Party for dissent during the Cultural Revolution.
[3] Yin Hai-guang, 1919-1969, is a mainland-born scholar considered the originator of the ideal of Taiwanese independence. (He was also a former editor of Central Daily News - see the last post.)


Anonymous Anonymous said...

hey, im sorry this comment on an entry left more than a year ago. But i'm wondering if you have the tracklist to that cd u left the link for? cause it came out all weird on my computer (just symbols not chinese or anything)

9:32 AM  

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