“Maybe we can stop celebrating the mere existence of culture in China, and demand more”

Widely celebrated Substack newsletter Chaoyang Trap invited me to contribute a few words to their inaugural edition of The Chaoyang Review. I wrote about the ambitious new album from Xi’an-based post-punk band FAZI, entitled Folding Story.

Introducing the new review series, Krish Raghav wrote, ‘The “review” is an exercise in paying attention. If there’s something (anything) that ties our chaotic newsletter together, it is this discernment towards what feels under-explored in English writing about China. Cultural critique—rigorous, reflective, current—felt like a big one. […] The hope is that our choice of review subjects (and our multi-voiced perspective) can highlight the overlooked, analyze the popular, and reflect unfolding reactions. At the very least, maybe we can help create a more info-rich, expansive idea of where the actual cultural conversation on the Chinese web is.’

It’s an important new direction from what has quickly become one of the most incisive and interesting English language voices on contemporary Chinese culture.  

Read the inaugural edition of the Chaoyang Review, including my write-up of FAZI’s album, here.

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