In February 2015, the four artistic goons of Me Chinese thought it would be a good idea to ask Karina and I to join them for a four day mini tour of South Florida. Saying that the tour was memorable would be an understatement; it was a life-changing kaleidoscope of emotion, friends, and experiences that I’ll never forget. We felt everything and captured more than that. Over the next few weeks, we’ll be sharing you the roller coaster that was touring with Me Chinese. Enjoy.
Here’s the list of characters you’ll grow familiar with:
Matt Kamm (vocals, guitar)
Kyle “Kyle Studios” Harms (perma-smile drummer)
Ben Wright (vocals, keyboard)
Artie Burer (bass, vocals)
Rachel (Artie’s better-half, TVW guest film photographer)
Me (Matthew Weller, The Vinyl Warhol, goon)
Karina Curto (photographer, also goon)
And we are off!! After a righteous practice set, we struggled to load guitars, amps, and a drum set into a 1992 Buick and a PT Cruiser.
Butt bugs are the leading cause of twerking. When infected with butt bugs, a victim’s body tries to force out the butt bug’s eggs b4 they hatch, this is done by furiously shaking one’s hindquarters.
Thursday night- after a fairly uneventful car ride that featured a surprising Marilyn Manson/Powerman 5000 jam session – we arrive in West Palm Beach for the first show at Respectables’. It’s a beautiful night; the stage is set on the patio behind the bar. Moral is high. And the drink special was something heavenly. The boys burn through the setlist. The night is made. Let’s dance.
But before we dance, let’s talk about Me Chinese’s music. Because more important than their name – we’ll get to that in a bit – is their music. It’s a genre-bending, psychedelic madhouse that pulls influence from doo wop, art rock, acid rock, garage rock, rock n’ roll, etc. I could go on and on, but what it really boils down to is: I do not really know what Me Chinese “sound” is. They don’t even know what it is. Karina christened it F.A.F. or Funky As Fuck, and that’s probably the best description I’ve heard so far.
What I do know, is I like it. Artie, Ben, and Matt bring these character voices that create these sugary, slimy harmonies. They’re paired with this continuously morphing landscape of organ, guitar, bass, and drums. It’s as if the First Methodist Church Choir was gently tossed into a wood chipper. Sometimes it’s pretty. Sometimes it’s not. But, it always grabs you. Because I’m not sure if any of what I said actually means anything, I’ll let you know that you can check out previous pieces I’ve done on Me Chinese, both on their Shaving EP, their set at Grandma Party, and “The Single.”
Now we dance. After the set, I show the boys how to ravage the dance floor. Karina, Kyle, Ben, and I dance for about an hour, sipping the tasty pink fuel that was the special that night. The night peaks during dance fever that occurred during “Last Night” by The Strokes.
Then Karina gets kicked out for being underaged. No problem. We all get pizza. Then, two intoxicated West Palm inhabitants start berating me outside of the pizza place. All four members of Me Chinese push back. Matt tells her to go blog about it. See what I meant by roller coaster? The night as a whole was a really cathartic way to start the tour. It was a great start to an incredible weekend.
“Why don’t you go blog about it?” – Matt Kamm
Me Chinese is a family, a fucked up family, but they look after each other. One drunk couple telling us off will easily turn into a fist fight.
7 on 2
Odds aren’t in your favor!
This isn’t a band, it’s a WWE faction.
Chances are, if you know anything about Me Chinese, it’s that they’ve picked up a lot of negative response on their name. Last year, a few weeks before the bands’ NYC CMJ run, a blogger got wind that a band named “Me Chinese” was booked for some shows. She took her opinions to Facebook, which caused even more people to stand up, both for and against the band. Ultimately, this stir led to Me Chinese getting kicked off a few of shows.
This issue makes up a large part of the conversation. It’s something that the band themselves feels very strongly towards.
Me Chinese tests people’s morals. On its own, their name causes people to think: Where is the line? When does something become socially wrong?
[Their name is] not offensive enough to be obviously bad, but [it is] offensive enough to make people think: Is this okay?
The art of Me Chinese is the response they evoke, [both through their music and their name.]
“Our art about nothing.”
“We are dadaists. We are absurdists.” – Matt Kamm
“Okay, so here’s a little cat pee puddle.” – Dino Felipe (musician, artists, GOD)