i’ve been wrapped in a sleepless change of homes over the last weekend + didn’t really have the time/effort/whatever for a too-assiduous search for new shit, so in the fashion of the generations of lazy/desperate “writers” before me i have decided to interpret my editorial guidelines loosely enough to avoid having to seek + find + digest + regurgitate all in one day some middle-of-nowhere schmuck’s bedroom-recorded valentine or whatever the fuck college kids are doing with their laptops nowadays + INSTEAD present something genuinely exciting if slightly more aged in the hopes that we might be able to bring it to canada.
skip skip ben ben is a noise rock band from taiwan + the brainchild of ben ben (chinese for “freckles”), whose resume includes local taipei legends BOYZ & GIRL + mainland chinese punk sensations carsick cars (though she has no recorded output with them). the sound is heavily indebted to classic shoegaze e.g. nowhere-era ride, loop, JAMC etc, plus sprinklings of sonic youth + pavement + other such “indie rock” fare. ben ben was among the first in taipei to explore these sounds + it shows – giddy hooks awash in reverb, distortion + feedback deployed gracefully + unaggressively. as much as i enjoy her guitar playing – she seems to wring an impossible volume of sound from every hit despite never sounding like she’s playing more than two notes at a time – the most welcoming aspect of the tunes is definitely her voice, sweet + unaffected in the finest of indie pop traditions (check the ba-da-bas on “sand” and google young marble giants if you’re lost) singing in warped poeticisms only half-lost in translation like a jet-lagged plath with her nose in a phrasebook; she commands the maelstrom of guitars without needing to mimic their muscle + shit my britches if the whole mess doesn’t sound crisp and fuckin’ real all at once.
i’m pretty sure she’s touring the mainland right now, but she’s expressed a wish to tour canada, so booking agents email (hottest chinese indie label around, check them out while you’re there) + start beggin’.
STANDOUT TRACKS = 1, 6, 7