One of the most exciting bands to come out of Beijing this past few years, Wasted Laika丢莱卡 are wasting no time making a name for themselves. With this year’s national tour not just six months removed, the punk band turned their attention to putting together another, very different trip around the country.
This time, taking in just eight dates, they bring together seven very interesting bands, such as Plastic, Berlin Psycho Nurses and Pumpkins, in eight cities. They eschew popular first tier cities Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Beijing and Shanghai, in favour of smaller locations.
Guiyang, Chongqing, Changsha, Xi’an and more are hardly tiny cities, but these places are perhaps lesser known for their musical output. They have become, essentially, forgotten spaces.
I spoke to of Wasted Laika’s Tu Junnan涂俊南 about their Forgetful Plains tour, their future plans and the acts they have called in to play alongside.
This trip will take place in many small cities all over China. Why do you want to go to these smaller cities?
In fact, the city we are going to is not a small city in the strict sense, but it is not a big city like Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou, which is an absolute first-tier city. The main reason that we didn’t go to Guangdong this time is that we went there last time and we want to go to a new place this time. If there’s a chance in the future, we’d like to go to some real small town to perform. We are a Chinese rock band, and China is definitely not just a big city of China.
Why do you say you don’t need a reason to tour. You don’t need an album to tour. If you are not promoting and album, what do you want to do on the tour?
This question can be answered from two aspects. First of all, I don’t mean to say, there’s no need to promote an album to go on tour, but that theres no causal relationship between the tour and the release of the album. The fact that we want to tour itself has been enough to justify our tour, so our tour is more straightforward, really, travel + performance, this is enough fun.
Second, to be honest, we don’t have anything special to do on the tour. We insist on saying that we don’t want to lose a lot of money. We just want that the new songs we’ve just written don’t suck on this tour.
Do you think independent bands need to be on many tours? To make money to use for things like recording new material?
It’s necessary that many people talk about the benefits of the tour from the perspective of the promotion of the band. What’s more important to me is that theres always something new going on, and it has to be real. The band keeps tangling and re-creating, and the tour is the easiest way to do that.
You will play with some great new bands like Plastic and Berlin Psycho Nurses. Did you know all the bands before the tour?
We are on the train from Wuhan to Chengdu. Plastic and Berlin Psycho Nurses are the guests of our Kunming and Changsha stations respectively. We have never cooperated together. All the guests were chosen by me, and I listened to each one carefully.
In addition to this tour, will your fans get to hear any upcoming content by the end of the year? You’ve already sent a single to excite everyone. How about the next one?
Everybody’s in a hurry, we’re fine. By the end of this year and early next year we should be doing some more formal work out, hopefully a full-length album.