With a few honourable exceptions, quality electronic music in Shanghai is hard to find. In such a commercial city, bars and clubs have high rents to pay. So obviously, events where there isn’t anyone from the top 100 ranked DJ list playing are rubbish and not worth going to.
Of course, thats unless local underground hero Ben Huang is DJing. And tonight he takes centre stage at his own event going by the name Ding, at 4live.
Ben will play that much misunderstood genre, techno, along with DJs Allen from Taiwan and Mickey from Beijing’s Yen crew.
Having spun Detroit techno for some 10 years now in China, Ben feels Shanghai has yet to wake up to this most electronic of styles. He said, “I just want to play this kind of music and other stuff I like, and I want to make a forum to show that Chinese DJs can play techno too.”
Shanghai’s live music scene has long been ridiculed, with Beijing ruling that particular roost. But the cultural superiority extends to the electronic scene too, says Ben.
“A lot of the good DJs stay in Beijing. I don’t really know why the scene is better in Beijing than it is in Shanghai. Maybe people’s mind is different. Who really cares about the music in Shanghai? Everyone just wants to listen to Sasha and Digweed. Most people who go out don’t care about the music here.”
Ding, tonight at 4 Live, 8 Jianguo Zhong Lu (near Chongqing/Sinan Lu). 50 RMB at the door. 9pm-late.