What is Concrete Avalanche?

It’s a song by Lava | Ox | Sea. But it’s also the name for a Substack about music from China. “Independent” or “alternative” music mostly, if those terms are still relevant. Non-pop music from China basically. The hope is it’ll help keep you up to date on new releases from China and/or introduce you to new music and artists you might not have found otherwise.

I first came to China in 2005 and have been writing about music from the country almost ever since. Initially I helped co-write a blog on the Shanghai music scene called Kungfuology and since then have written about or spoken on music in China for the BBC, The Wire, Billboard, Time Out and more.

I had reservations (about so many things…) about starting this newsletter. In addition to the usual concerns about whether I’ll be able to sustain it etc, I want artists from China to be judged on their music rather than where they’re from. Yet at the same time there is a real lack of coverage of those artists in English and it can be difficult for non-Chinese readers to find extensive information about new music from the country. So here we are.

Concrete Avalanche is still new and still finding its feet so please be patient with it, but I welcome any feedback, tips, questions or Bandcamp subsidies.

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