Huffpost Arts
Crane.tv Headshot

China Calling: Punk In Beijing (VIDEO)

Posted: Updated:
Print

When the Sex Pistols appeared on the BBC singing "God Save the Queen," China was still in the grips of the Cultural Revolution - most music was banned, and Mao ruled supreme. It would take another two decades before punk arrived in Beijing.

It began in basements, brothels and back alleys; any DIY venue that would allow for the alien genre. The earliest bands such as Underbaby and P.K. 14 were a motley crew of rebellious teens who, like the Sex Pistols before them, could barely play their instruments and hated the local metal scene.

Their sound was unmistakably Chinese. In the aftermath of the events of Tiananmen Square six years previously, mid-90's punk articulated the frustrations and hopes of a new generation. Today, punk in China has become a well-established subculture, embraced by as many angry kids as fashion-conscious hipsters.

Text by Stephy Chung for Crane.tv

For more cultural news follow Crane.tv on Twitter or find us on Facebook