In March of 2015, Genjing Records brought the legendary Melbourne synth punk band Primitive Calculators to China. They performed eight shows across five cities with notable local acts such as Birdstriking, Snapline, AV Okubo, and Torturing Nurse. If fact, the tour was in conjunction with the release of a Genjing 7″ split between Primitive Calculators and Torturing Nurse.
The idea for the tour came about when I was discussing the late ’70s Melbourne scene, specifically the Little Bands, with Stuart Grant. Stuart, the founder of Primitive Calculators, had spearheaded that scene and was struck by the similarities between what they were doing then and what was happening with Beijing’s Zoomin’ Night milieu, masterminded by Zhu Wenbo, in the mid-00s. We wanted to bring Stuart and Zhu Wenbo together and the idea for the tour was born. Which Way Is China? captures what happened when these two luminaries met. The documentary tells the story of that tour, the meeting of two scenes thirty years apart but siblings in spirit, and a struggle to come to grips with just what is happening with modern China. Check it out for yourself, the whole documentary can be streamed on YouTube and the split 7″ between Primitive Calculators and Torturing Nurse is available here.