SXSW regional preview: Asia
Duck Fight Goose
From: Shanghai, China.
About: A wildly creative musical collective, their experimental noise is mathematically complex and sonically dense. Playful rhythms wade through layers of fuzz while weirdly catchy melodies float on top.
Could share a bill with: Tortoise, Octopus Project Arcade Fire
From: Beijing, China
About: An emotional, guitar-driven outfit, their carefully crafted indie rock swells from quiet melodic passages to brilliant bursts of fuzz and noise. A working band since 2005, they toured Europe with Sonic Youth in 2007.
Could share a bill with: Guided By Voices, Sonic Youth, Built To Spill
The White Eyes
From: Taipei City, Taiwan
About: Taiwanese candycore that stylistically whiplashes between grunge thrash and highly melodic indie noise. Female lead Gao Xiao-gao is equally captivating spinning sultry swells through synthesizer swirls as she is riding rugged guitar riffs with a wicked shriek.
Could share a bill with: Sleigh Bells, Of Montreal, Ume
From: Tenjinmachi, Japan
About: Headlining this year's Japan Night showcase, this 11-piece ensemble, self-dubbed a "brutal orchestra," does dark, some might say, terrifying, chaotic compositions that merge horrorcore thrash with frenetic strings and insane operatics. Safe to say it's unlike anything you've heard or seen before.
Could share a bill with: Boredoms, Melt Banana, Gwar
From: Singapore, Singapore
About: A lovely young singer-songwriter from Singapore whose heart-on-sleeve acoustic music wouldn't be at all out of place or unwelcome in any campus-side coffeeshop in Middle America.
Could share a bill with: Margot and the Nuclear So and Sos, Thao and the Get Down Stay Down, Kimya Dawson
Taken by Cars
From: Quezon City, Phillipines
About: Melodic, shoe-gazey new wave with tightly woven synth and guitar riffs and highly dancable rhythm tracks.
Could share a bill with: Temper Trap, Florence and the Machine, Bloc Party
From: Seoul, South Korea
About: A raucous quintet of indie veterans with a 15-year-old catalog that includes everything from fast and furious punk rock to hints of ska and even Irish drinking songs. The best-selling Korean indie band of all-time.
Could share a bill with: Against Me, Social Distortion, Dropkick Murphys
From: Kamirenjaku, Japan
About: Blending contemporary and traditional Japanese cultures, this trio consists of acoustic guitar, shamisen (a traditional three-stringed Japanese instrument) and a singer who also does traditional Japanese sword dancing, a languid, highly interpretive form. Singer/dancer Kaori Kawabuchi is also famous for being a motion actor in "Final Fantasy."
Could share a bill with: Any avant-artsy showcase curated by the Church of the Friendly Ghost