As the Womb and Strange Stains China Tour draws near, we caught up with the support acts to find out more about their respective cities!
First up, we have Cheesemind from the sunny beachside city of Xiamen.
【中文原文在下面 // Scroll for the original Chinese text】
Cheesemind are a three-piece indie pop band consisting of Chen Zhenchao a.k.a. Soda (guitar, vocals), Ruibi Qiu, or 小Q for short, a.k.a. RabiQ (synth, vocals) and Zee (drums) hailing from the beautiful city of Xiamen, Wellington’s sister city, located in the southwest province of Fujian. After a six year hiatus, the group returned earlier this year with Bay Park Serenade released on Guangzhou-based DIY label Qiii Snacks Records, a brilliant five-track EP beaming with sunshine bangers and the crispness of a freshly opened cold beer.
We are stoked to have them join as support for the second show of the tour at Real Live, the best indie livehouse in Xiamen, located in the Shapowei Art Zone, right near the beach.
Soda: Leo ♌️
RabiQ: Libra ♎️
Zee: Taurus ♉️
Zee: Shushing Face
3）Fave song to sing at KTV
Zee: 潘玮柏 《快乐崇拜》
Soda: Bulma from Dragon Ball Z
RabiQ: Tintin from the Adventures of Tintin
Zee: None really. But if I had to say one, it would be Black Cat Detective.
Soda: Eat a whole roast chicken with six beers at midnight. Drinking with friends till 4am, getting up at 7 for work. Spending 200 of my remaining 300RMB on getting drunk.
RabiQ: Eating before going to bed
Zee: Drinking as soon as I wake up.
Soda: Other people interfering with your life and choices saying they want to “help you,” but really, they just can’t face reality.
RabiQ: Double standards.
8）”I’ll scan you or you scan me?” (WeChat QR custom)
Soda: I’ll scan you.
RabiQ: I’ll scan you.
Zee: You scan me.
9）”Do you smoke?”
Soda: A pack over two weeks. Only Zhuhai.
10）“What would you like to drink？”
Soda: Half Sugar Iced Americano / Half Sugar Ice Latte / Long Island Iced Tea
RabiQ: I was hungry so just had a peach yoghurt.
Zee: A tall glass of cold beer.
- Cheesemind will be playing with a full band for this show. Can you introduce the members?
SODA: In addition to us three, I’ve invited the best bass player in Xiamen, Mr. Li, to help out. I kinda tricked him into it. He is a professional bassist with the Amoy Jazz Big Band, an amazing group, so we are honored to have him! On drums we have a really good young drummer from Fujian. He used to play alternative/grunge but hasn’t tried to steer us that way, which has been a relief!
- What do you do for work and play?
SODA: I work in the chemical industry, I am in the lab all day. I’ve had less free time over the last few years. Basically, I come home from work, practice piano, arrange music, and have a little wine in the evening.
RABIQ: I usually do design. Xiamen is a great place for night trips, taking a walk or drive to the beach is really easy.
ZEE: I work in sales. For fun, I usually just drink with friends, watch movies and practice drum games.
- Cheesemind has been on hiatus for six years. What have you been doing?
SODA: Do other types of bands, performing everywhere, working, practicing piano, drinking, and spending time with the family.
RABIQ: Work and love.
- How did Bay Park Serenade come about? When were these songs written?
SODA: The songs were arranged at the end of 2018 and over Chinese New Year. I felt that I still have to make an EP, so I contributed one track and Rabiq contributed three. Life was a bit clearer in 2018, I’m really happy with the song Sugar Free Soda. We recorded it at my house. I was bored during Chinese New Year and spent a week recording, then the vocals came to my house slowly. It was a very beautiful and simple time. I think the most happy thing about making music is this. Instant!
RABIQ: The 2018 thermometer seemed to respond well. We had a really good connection and flow of communication with making this EP. ‘Out of Focus’ was written to a friend at the end of 2018. ‘Insomnia’ and ‘Natural’ were written early this year.
- How is the music scene in Xiamen?
SODA: There are no young bands, they are all just playing Douyin (Tiktok) songs, and Beyond covers.
RABIQ: A lot of bands I want to see never come to Xiamen.
ZEE: As far as the live scene goes, the bars basically only have acoustic folk music. I hope there will be more different styles in future.
- We have an extra day in Xiamen. Can you suggest any of your favourite places or things to eat?
SODA: I like Huandao Road the most, when I’ve got nothing on I like to go down there at night. All the most authentic, delicious dishes in Xiamen are in Xinglin and Jimei.
Rabiq: I like quiet places like Lotus Park.
Zee: Go to Bailuzhou Park to watch the sunset.
- What is your favorite cheese?
SODA: Stringy cheese on pizza.
RABIQ: I like light cheese like mozzarella
ZEE: To be honest, I don’t really like cheese. The Cheesemind exception!
Zee: Shushing Face
Zee: 潘玮柏 《快乐崇拜》
Zee: 没什么偶像 一定要说的话那就是黑猫警长
- 这次现场你们会有full band 能不能介绍一下成员
Soda: 这次除了我们乐团三人之外，请来了厦门最好的贝司手李老师助阵（其实是被我骗来的哈哈）他是职业贝司手，合作的乐团有Amoy Jazz Big Band，话仙乐队，所以我们很荣幸。合作的鼓手是福建非常好又认真的年轻鼓手，虽然他之前玩的音乐是另类/垃圾摇滚，但是没想到驾驭我们也不在话下，所以非常感动！
Rabiq: 18年发的温度计似乎获得不错的反响，和超超商量着干脆出张ep吧 失焦是18年底写给朋友的，失眠和自然是19年初写的，目前都是宅录
- 我们要多待一天在厦门，你们最喜欢的地方在哪里？有没有厦门特色的推荐 哈哈
Tickets on Showstart