Interview with a three-piece indie-pop band China moon

Manchester-based China moon is a three-piece band that blends Eastern vibes with an indie-pop sensibility to craft melancholic melodies.

Having just finished recording their debut EP alongside a successful first tour, the group is now embarking upon a string of dates across the UK to promote their highly anticipated first single, Nebula, released at the end of September.

Looking back, what were some of your earliest entries into music appreciation? And music production?

Something that makes us unique as a band is we’ve all come from different musical backgrounds. We’ve all been passionate about music as listeners and makers since we were little! In a world of disposable streaming, I still love buying CD’s and records, waiting for a physical copy of an album to be released was a big part of my youth, I’d focus on an album that I loved for weeks and months, although as musicians and artists streaming has opened a lot of exciting doors!

Take us through your songwriting process. Are there any particular steps you take when putting music together?

I can never force a melody or a lyric, it has to happen naturally, and that’s a mantra we abide by in the band. We want our music to reflect our stories and feel authentic. We usually start with either an idea, or Matt will create a rift, and then Ellie will play with drum melodies, I’ll play with then vocal melodies and then see where the story goes with the lyrics.

What gets your creative juices flowing?

As a band, we are political and have strong views on what’s going on in the world. We often discuss climate change or other topical subjects where then an idea for a song can emerge. I’m very passionate about the way masculinity is portrayed within music, and I tend to write lyrics that as a man I would want to hear to relate to. I think there’s a lack of songs that carry a theme of empowerment for men, and often as a man, I feel unrepresented within the music.

As a musician, it becomes apparent that there is a huge difference between the art and the business. Is there anything about the music scene that you would personally change?

It’s a brilliant thing of today is that streaming, and the internet, in such a small amount of time, has given opportunities to passionate music makers and lovers to create music and market it themselves. The tricky side is the amount of content being produced. It’s exciting to create the art you want to make, but from a business perspective, more opportunities for genuine independent artists would allow more scope for new talent.

Studio work and music creation or performing and interacting with a live audience, which do you prefer?

My personal favorite part of music is creating a song from nothing, it’s magic, there’s nothing to describe it. We’ll create a song with the band, or I’ll be writing at home, and there’s an unspoken click where you hear everything come together for the first time, and it’s just a beautiful feeling, as for any art form. But Ellie, Matt, and I love being on stage and seeing which songs our audience responds too. Manchester is great for live music!

What’s on your current playlist?

Our tastes vary massively, but I’m currently listening to a lot of Novo Amor, Dermot Kennedy, Mahalia, and I’m loving Gabriella Aplin’s new stuff!
Breakdown the news for us: what can we expect from you in the near future?
Our new single ‘Lonely Game’ is out in December, along with a headline gig in Manchester on the 13th at the Castle Hotel with a killer line up! We’ve got new music in the works for 2020, and hoping to do a tour in the spring to promote our upcoming EP!

Famous last words?

Keep making shit until something sticks!

Follow China Moon online:

Facebook | Soundcloud | YouTube | Twitter | Instagram | Bandcamp

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