TV Monkey (Convenience Store)

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General Information

Artist: Convenience Store
Title: 电视猴 (diànshì hóu) / TV Monkey
Release Date: 2007, April 15
Label: Modern Sky Records
Type: CDDA
Catalog No.: M025
Language: Chinese

Track Listing

  1. 世界
  2. 电视机
  3. Silent Day
  4. Monkey Monkey
  5. 我们都是科学家
  6. 悲伤城市
  7. S级生活
  8. 行者
  9. 金色瞬间
  10. 国王
  11. 仿佛在天空里


  • (c) that's Beijing Blog, Venus Lau, July 20, 2007

Well on the way to becoming the next Modern Sky pop-rock stars, this young, local Beijing quartet are now on their second album (following 2002’s Five Star, also on Modern Sky). Headed for a 12-city China tour, they also display a slickness that gives away their anticipation of music-video fame.

When it comes to music skills, these young, raised-in-the-80s lads are handy enough, though their music is hardly challenging – power chords galore, confident Mandarin vocals and a steady drum beat. The band wear ‘90s Brit-band influences on their sleeve – they even publicize it in their profile. Still, reinterpreting is one thing, plagiarizing is another: blatant cloning of Coldplay (characterized by sudden falsettos and smooth piano interludes) can hardly be described as original, and it’s slightly unnerving that the band doesn’t even try to hide the piracy, assuming their copycatting will become legitimate through their no-disguise attitude.

As a native Chinese I’m destined to hear every word from singer Guo Shuo’s mouth. Lyrics like “I own the whole world as I love you” are cheesy enough, but even more hideous is the closing track, Like Being in the Sky (Fangfu Zai Tiankong Li), which name-checks Modern Sky artists in a strange lyrical/marketing technique. TV Monkey, ironically, turns out to be the perfect name for this album – an aped album for a generation raised on the daily practice of shutting down your brain and letting passive consumption take control. So while this catchy 11- track album didn’t make me turn off my stereo immediately, I didn’t want to have the 40-something minutes of their sound swirling around me like inevitable bad karma either.


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