This week I discovered some fantastic new European musicians:
- Applescal from Amsterdam, a deep house producer
- Chinese Man, a trip hop and reggae trio hailing from Aix-en-Provence in the South of France
Applescal – Airport
Applescal released an album earlier this year titled For, which is the one I have been listening to on repeat. My favorite tracks on the album are Airport and Matter, the former is below.
The album artwork for their recently released album is beautiful also. It’s pictured at right and appears in the Soundcloud song embedded below.
Chinese Man – One Upon a Time ft. Tumi
Chinese Man a collective that has existed for over ten years, which I am now just discovering. The album series which I’ve been listening to is called The Groove Sessions but you can find a collection of other songs on the Chinese Man Soundcloud. Their sound is very analog, warm and organic, and reminiscent of other European contemporary artists like Wax Tailor, C2C, and Birdy Nam Nam. Their songs frequently feature guest vocalists and rappers, like this one which features South African rapper Tumi Molekane.
- China is Building the Mother of All Reputation Systems to Monitor Citizen Behavior – This is not even remotely surprising but the wide variance in the perception of the role and responsibility of government is fascinating. Rogier Creemers, a China expert at Oxford University, says: “In Europe and the U.S., there’s a notion that the state should be constrained, that it’s not right to intervene in people’s lives, unless for justified reasons. In China, the state has no qualms about that. It says ‘data allows us to make society for better, so we’re going to use it.”
- Kickstarter CEO Discusses Company’s New Charter, Goals for the Gaming Space – Kickstarter has doubled down on their social commitment with this decision to deprecate the ordinary overarching goal of companies: profit. Says the Kickstarter CEO: “When you normally think of corporate responsibility and social good I think you immediately go to granola, crunchy sort of concepts. But I think this is much more progressive and futuristic. And, you know, this provision as a part of corporate law has only been in existence for a few years, but we join companies like Patagonia, This American Life in becoming a benefit corporation.” Their charter is refreshingly straight-forward and clear, coming it at just 500 words: Kickstarter Charter
- Uber Launches UberCommute, a Carpooling Service Starting in China – This is huge news for Chengdu, which has recently been named by Uber as their “Number one city”. Amazing achievement for Uber to see such explosive growth in Chengdu, of all places. We have published multiple articles about Uber in Chengdu on Chengdu Living and I’m sure there will be more.
- A Coded Rant About China’s Government Goes Viral – Instead of having Fox News and protests, China has a much more creative form of dissent, described and translated in this story published by The Atlantic. It is an imaginative demonstration of poetic subversion, and also somewhat chilling.
- A New Book Praises China’s Governance Model, but Overlooks Its Politics – A fair and balanced criticism of what is the most poorly-timed book release in recent memory. After years of soaring optimism about China’s governance and future prospects, the floor beneath global faith in China falls out and then this shamelessly apologetic book comes out. Embarrassing for the author, although I have no doubt that he is surrounded by people who encourage his one-sided narrative at Tsinghua University in Beijing.
A live remix project created by Japanese musician Shawn Wasabi, using a custom-made Midi Fighter (made by DJ Tech Tools). His timing is so precise that without looking at the video you would have no idea that this is performed live. Composed using pieces of 153 different songs that were cut up and re-contextualized into this final piece. The bubbles 1:09 into the video are a terrific small detail.