Quiet Lounge……

This is the weirdest thing I’ve encountered today.

When combing through my RSS feeds, I came across a post on Free Albums Galore titled “Red Unit – several albums”, I paid special attention to it because the attached pic features a revolutionary woodcut drawing and four Chinese characters – 红色少女 (literally “Red Girl”), under which there are two English words – RED UNIT.

Because Free Albums Galore is hosted on a BSP which has been blocked in mainland China, I’ll quote a few words from the post:

Red Unit out of the Quiet Lounge netlabel is like that. The artists reside in Shanghai, China and produces dense Industrial Dance music. What sets Red Unit apart from other techno groups is that they used the music and sounds of China’s political past for their base.

That’s already enough to activate my curiosity, so I clicked on the label’s link and found a couple of strange things:

1. The characters on the frontpage are written in simplified Chinese, while the ones in the logo at the top of this page are in traditional Chinese.

2. There are some Japanese scattering around the site, such as the Creative Commons claim.

3. A quirky mixture of various Chinese elements can be found in the site, to name but a few: “Red”, “Maoism”, “Yam Cha”, “Shanghai”, “Commune”.

I don’t have much clue about the label but judging from their link page, it must have something to do with the Beijing breakcore/digital hardcore scene, as a few brand names of the scene (iLoop, Reconfiguration Records) were listed. Since Quiet Lounge is an online label, all the music can be downloaded for free, but it’s too late now so I’ll leave that for tomorrow. In the meantime, any information about the label is appreciated.

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28 Comments »

  1. dajuin said

    It is a Japanese netlabel. It’s actually quite obvious. Two errors, though tiny, gave it away immediately:

    First, the logo for the label (with a vertical seal design) uses the Japanese simplified Kanji character for “Guang,” 広, which is distinctively different from the Chinese simplified form: 广.

    Second, in the owner’s intro, there is one typo in this sentence: “Erectoronica that takes the taste of Asia is offered in Quietlounge Label.” As most people familiar with the Japanese and their language know, the confusion between “L” and “R” is typically Japanese.

  2. Lawrence said

    Yes I noticed the R too. But why would they use simplified Chinese on the frontpage?

  3. dajuin said

    Using simplified Chinese is only natural, to give an authentic chinese impression. But, when facing the need to do a “seal script” seal logo design, the (overly) simplified Chinese character simple will not work visually, so one reverts to the Japanese simplified version (otherwise there is nothing inside the radical on the top). Or maybe the seal design was done by a separate seal carver.

    I forgot to mention, not only the reversed “L” and “R”, but the extra syllable – “erec_to_ronica” too is unmistakably japanese.

    Anyway, interesting stuff on this label (no matter what angle you’re looking from).

  4. arbyth said

    they use “yam cha” for the english of “yin3cha2”, i am not sure if this is a japanese word ? because i ‘ve heard that in the japanese manga [Dragon Ball]
    :)

  5. wolfenstein said

    you got it, arbyth! :)

  6. dajuin said

    no, “yum cha” is Cantonese for “yin3cha2”, and has also become a regular english translation for it (similar to how Dim Sum became the official international translation for Dian3Xin1).

  7. Lawrence said

    arbyth, I bet what you watched was dubbed in Cantonese.

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  9. Once said

    Wow! …oh well.. I don’t know much about the music label and stuff you guys are talking about here, but it’s really interesting the observation about Japanese, Chinese simplified and traditional Dajuin mentioned…

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