Previously known under the moniker Dead J, Shao Yan Peng now performs and produces simply under the name SHAO. He is an electronic musician, sound designer, and a prominent figurehead in China’s contemporary electronic music scene. SHAO expresses himself through his music, almost as naturally as the way people express emotions. Through his intricately crafted soundscapes, he forms a sense of space, communicates his state of mind, and reveals the complexities of structure in sound. His minimalist production approach explores the abstract and psychedelic aspects of electronic music.
Listen to SHAO’s newest EP Doppler Shift Pt. 1 below:
欢迎试听《Doppler Shift Pt.1》曲目:
SHAO’s unique sounds eventually attracted the attention of the legendary and world renowned, German electronic music label Tresor Records. This famous label has worked with Robert Hood, Blake Baxter, Surgeon, Juan Atkins, Terrence Dixon and Jeff Mills – whom many consider to be pioneers of techno music. The label’s own nightclub, Tresor Club in Berlin, is also widely regarded as a mecca of electronic music by techno fans. The stringent industry standards and sense of acoustic aesthetics Tresor Records works by has set the tone for the quality of the musicians and released works under the label.
这种探索下的独特作品也吸引了德国Tresor Records的注意。这是一个是享誉世界的传奇性电子厂牌，Techno音乐鼻祖 Jeff Mills、Robert Hood，以及Blake Baxter、Surgeon、Juan Atkins、Terrence Dixon等，都曾在其旗下发行作品，位于柏林的Tresor Club更是被techno乐迷奉为圣地。同时，Tresor Records也以极其严苛的工业标准和审美，对待所有烙上Tresor印记的音乐家及其作品。
In 2015, SHAO signed with Tresor Records and became the first Chinese musician to join the roster of powerhouse producers under the label. In September of the same year, SHAO globally released his EP Doppler Shift Pt. 1 on vinyl. Issued as Tresor.280, this EP was SHAO’s fifth album. His previous releases include Mental Imagery, Mental Magic, Psychedelic Elephant, and Ting Tai Lou Ge. This new EP, released with Tresor Records, is the first official foray of Chinese electronic music being marketed towards a Western audience, and thus is considered to hold a significant importance for the Chinese electronic music scene as a whole. This was a brand new starting point for SHAO.
2015年，SHAO签约了Tresor Records并成为该厂牌的首位中国艺术家后，于当年9月全球范围发行了黑胶EP《Doppler Shift Pt. 1》，编号为Tresor.280。这是他继《幻术》、《心象》、《活着》、《亭台楼阁》后的第五张录音室作品，也是中国电子音乐首次进入西方电子音乐大厂的里程碑作品。这张Tresor出品的中国电子音乐作品，对整个中国电子乐场景都具有重要的意义，也成为SHAO的全新起点。
Following the release of Ting Tai Lou Ge in 2011, the production for Doppler Shift Pt. 1 was already underway. A few demo tracks were completed as early as 2012. SHAO maintains his experimental and multifaceted barrage of minimal sounds in this EP. Over the course of the last couple years, SHAO has gained an even more thorough understanding of music and sound. He is more in tune with the different frequencies of sound and has a better grasp on how to bring to life the sounds he has in mind. “I used to think that sound should be ‘listened to’, but now I feel like really great music should be able to provide sensory pleasure in the way that the sounds reverberate through the space it occupies,” he explains.
The new album is considerably more abstract than SHAO’s previous work, but at the same time more danceable. SHAO hopes to create an album consisting of experimental and minimalist sounds that at the same time can be played in a club setting. The Chinese name for Doppler Shift Pt. 1 is Guang Yan, which explores the concept of light. This fascination with light and playing with the concepts of light started with his albums Mental Imagery and Mental Magic. While in Ting Tai Ge Lou, he explores the environment and architectural spaces of modern day China. For SHAO, light feels spiritual and he considers the continuous nature of light to be an immense source of inspiration.
Following this latest EP, SHAO also released Date, a documentary he produced about electronic music. This film takes place during 2009 in Berlin, which was the first time SHAO performed there. During that period of time in China, keeping up to date with Europe’s electronic music scene was only possible by following a few select magazines and websites. The first time SHAO had ever met the German electronic artists that influenced him early in his career was during the filming of Date. Even today, this documentary and the process of filming it has had immense significance for him. With this film, SHAO hopes to introduce electronic music to Chinese people interested in Berlin or contemporary music.
SHAO thinks that the current state of electronic music in China is abysmal – there simply isn’t a lot of original work being created nor is there much demand for it. Electronic music never went into the frenzied developmental phase in China like it did in Western countries. But of course, nobody knows what the future will hold; electronic music could still make a rise in China despite the stagnant state of the scene in the past. The current situation might even motivate more artists to try and bring electronic music to the attention of more people through their work. For SHAO, his creative process is embedded in his subconscious as a daily routine. Day in and day out, he is mentally attuned to create and proactively searches for inspirations rather than letting it just come to him. As far as the future goes, SHAO expresses notions about self-improvement. “I hope to have more structure and I’ll work on managing my energy and time better. I have ideas that are five years old, and didn’t make it farther than the conceptual stage,” he says. For the moment, SHAO is fully focused on completing the remaining tracks for his up-and-coming full-length album Doppler Shift.
Contributor & Photographer: Banny Wang
供稿人与摄影师: Banny Wang