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[Shanghai Weekender]: Our Top Picks in Live Music, Clubbing, Arts & Stage

A curated selection of events in classical, clubbing, and live music... nothing too crazy if you're still recovering from New Years revelry.
2024-02-22 12:00:00

Live Music

Hailing from the cultural pressure cooker that is Beijing - Nugget Records has acted as a lightning rod for the capital’s lively subcultures and indie scene - merging the DIY ethos of underground music with the fuzzy, immersive lo-fi sounds that have been enriching the scene across China. But all good things must come to an end - and nugget records, along with one of its flagship bands, indie rockers gilded forest木与金, will be bidding the country adieu. But not without one last bash - with the band descending upon NEO Bar with a vengeance alongside fellow Beijing rockers Sphinx of Third Party跟第三方, and Shanghai’s own Waidiren外地人, returning after a long winter hibernation.

Shibuya-based rockers RAY? OH... NEEDA!! may not be a household name, but like many unearthed acts in Japan, they’ve got the musical chops to run circles around many bands here in China. It’s in their blood. A blissful brash mix of punk, blues, dub, and garage rock - the Tokyo band is rock and roll at its most combustible - a throwback to the alluring sounds of the 70s. They return to Shanghai for a three-night stint across town alongside another wily Japanese act - duo RIP VAN WINKLE - who likewise bring a rustic psychedelic retro grit to their rock and roll sound. Sleeper gig of the week. Note the bands will also be performing at Yuyintang on Friday and at NEO Bar on Sunday - ample time to catch the two bands in action.

A Hero’s Return! Shanghai rockers DaHaHa - known for their intrepid musicality, proving lyricism, and good-time sound - return to Shanghai after a pandemic-enforced hiatus. For their return, they’ll join a fever-dream lineup of some of the city's most delirious including crunchy power trio Doppler Drive, D&D-inspired doom metal act Cosmic Worm, spry rockers 失控108, and jazz-fukn-ska-punk genre-smashers Hogchoker.

A tribute and mashup of Manchester and Yangpu - two places that have birthed many young riotous acts - Yanchester unseals the Year of the Dragon with a killer Sunday night trifecta including 1000 Failures, known for evoking some of the pop rock and emo scene’s best from Japan and the US with a bittersweet exuberance that never gets bogged down in its youthful conviction while coloring its sound with technically lavish arrangements. Joining will be garage rock mainstays Hey! Lily! known for their no-frills high octane retro sound, as well as Taco Tuesday, whose upbeat, frenzied pop punk keeps the energy high and the good times rolling.

The SIRIUS Metal Fest is upon us - so if you’re s fan of bone-crushing metal there is no better place to be. The festival has tapped some serious international talent for the occasion - including Swedish black metal band Marduk (who sing aptly of Satanism, anti-Christianity, death and war), the eclectic Japanese avant-metal band Sigh, whose symphonic, synth-heavy sound can incorporate anything from dub breakdowns to folk instrumentation, and Polish black metal act BATUSHKA - known for channeling their music through the reverberant grandeur of ancient rituals of worship. If that wasn’t enough you’ve got heavyweight Chinese acts like black metal act Zuriaake from Jinan, one of the best in the scene; speed metal inflicted black metal outfit Bergrisar, out of Tianjin; Shanghai’s own operatic symphonic metal act Urizen Society and more. Righteous indeed.


ALTER. returns to the SYSTEM presenting Roza Terenzi’s China debut Shanghai stop:

Sideways at C’s Bar is back with a bang this new year with a master mixer behind the decks - Mongolian maestro Telmen. Expect to hear Oddball HipHop, atypical House, and bizarre Techno from residents LOKE, Don Jaly, and Shanyinde. Get back into the groove this spring with a melange of music that’ll knock you Sideways!

For those seeking an avant-garde twist to their weekend, the event at All Club on Saturday is a must-attend. The club’s industrial chic setting and reputation for cutting-edge electronic music set the stage for a night of auditory exploration. The main performer, known for a style that defies convention, promises to deliver a set that’s as eclectic as it is electrifying. The unique Live Performance of Maoupa Mazzocchetti will showcase a new Live set, centered around his upcoming EP release on the Colombian label TraTraTrax. Judging from the poster’s mention of genres like Alien R&B as well as Proto-Techno, one could only guess what theme of the night it’ll be other than interestingly freaky.

Sat, Feb 24, 2024

Fatima Hajji

This Saturday, Club Celia hosts an evening with Fatima Hajji, a giant in the electronic music scene. Her cool, reserved mixes are infused with a sophisticated techno vibe, blending modern beats with subtle ancestral echoes. Fatima’s reputation as a major headliner precedes her, renowned for her powerful electronic beats and magnetic stage presence. The event promises a night of unstoppable energy, where Fatima’s talent for selecting muscular electronic sounds and her innate connection with the crowd will create a symbiotic dance floor experience. Her style blends contemporary techno with ancestral sounds, showcasing her deep African origins. Big ups Celia Saturday.

Sat, Feb 24, 2024

Fuzzy Networks

At the upcoming event at Roza, nightgoers can anticipate an electrifying atmosphere where digital and analog realms collide, syncing the music’s beat with the soul’s rhythm. Amidst pulsating lights and thumping basslines, attendees will delve into an underground soundscape, navigating a labyrinth of beats. The main performer, KOUGAR, is known for his eclectic DJ sets that range from classic Soul and Funk to House, Tech House, and Nu Disco. His mission is to unite everyone on the dance floor through a shared passion for music. This event promises a journey of exploration and discovery, offering new connections and experiences in sound dimensions.

Arts & Stage

The Red Stars band featuring Ksenia and Trenton, presents the ultimate fusion of music and dance at the "Dua Lipa and Sam Smith Tribute Concert Dance Party!" Experience the thrill as our venue transforms into a dynamic dance floor, pulsating with the infectious beats of two global music sensations. The Pearl’s concert series illuminates the night with a Dua Lipa and Sam Smith tribute. The Red Stars band featuring Ksenia and Trenton, presents the ultimate fusion of music and dance. Experience the thrill as the venue transforms into a dynamic dance floor, pulsating with the infectious beats of two global music sensations.

Gaston Bertrand grew up in a musical family, and has been playing different kinds of instruments since young. He plays guitar, piano, bass and drums, and is skilled in composing, lyrics-writing and music production. Gaston toured with different artists including Cecelia Stalin (jazz ) , KAFE(jazz rap), and The Funk Project.

Vaporwave’s magical power allows people to travel through time to that psychedelic and retro era. As a very popular music style on the Internet, the young jazz singer Sookie, who obtains the rich vitality and stage charm, will bring many classic Citypop songs from musicians such as Yoshiki Oku, Yamaguchi Momoe, and Takeuchi Mariya with the band. Welcome to the tipsy night of neon at Jazz Lincoln Center. The show starts at 7.30pm.

As one of the biggest dance shows in the world, Spirit of the Dance has smashed box office records in over 20 countries, and has won more awards than any other dance production. The top-level dance sounds like a runaway express train and their precision and artistic showmanship sends shivers down your spine. This show delivers the powerful rhythms of Irish Dance combined with the passionate Latino rhythms of Tango, Flamenco and Red-Hot Salsa to produce a thrilling, heart-pounding production. Their Shanghai date this year is Feb 26. Two shows with price range from 180 to 880rmb.


Head over to Doc Guthrie's on Feb 24th, 2-6pm, for a blast. Doc Guthrie's Barbershop, Tacolicious Mexican, & Hai Seas Whiskey unite for an epic pop-up. Haircuts, tacos, whiskey—don't miss this unforgettable fiesta!

The Dragon Burn community - a China-based community of Burners focusing on both educating foreigners/locals about Burning Man culture a - hosts a meet-up following Dim Sum Disco at Madame Ching. Get ready for a delightful afternoon filled with short videos starting promptly at 3pm. Sip on delicious drinks as you open your eyes to inspiring stories and open your hearts to the Burn spirit! Open to everyone who's interested in learning more / joining the the Dragon Burn community .

Americans can now request your ballot and register to vote in Puxi, at Azul Weave. DemocratsAbroad has the VIP lounge reserved. Enjoy some libations while you get enfranchised!