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Yin: Sea-Warped Synth-Rock from Xiamen’s Daytrip Dormancy

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Yin (音, “music”) is a weekly RADII column that looks at Chinese songs spanning hip hop to folk to modern experimental, and everything in between. Drop us a line if you have a suggestion.

Another proto-summer weekend, another chiller to spend some time cooling off to as you loosen into the groove: Night Flow (夜流) from Xiamen synth-rock duo Daytrip Dormancy.

 

The three-song EP marks the first release from the duo, which formed in the balmy coastal city in 2017. There are no lyrics, but each of this EP’s three tracks is packed with rich feeling, and each is meant to convey the sense of long, warm, urban nights, according to a text accompanying the release.

Despite the languid, literary verbiage oozing from Night Flow‘s press materials, Daytrip Dormancy’s sound is tight and crisp, an organic yet mechanic interlocking of waving synth layers surfing over the rhythm of their in-the-pocket live drummer. The pace of life is slow in Xiamen, but the city punches above its weight in terms of the underground music it produces. As we’ve seen several times over the course of this year, Xiamen boasts a distinctive sound, a cohesive aesthetic, and more than one original take on time-worn genres that have long ago gone stale in larger cities.

Keep it coming, always here for some summer Xiamen-wave!

Stream/buy Night Flow on the Merrie Records Bandcamp.

More from Xiamen:

City Mix: Sound Waves from the Seaside City of Xiamen

Gen Z Rapper Lows0n: “I Started Learning Music in the Womb”

Josh Feola
Josh Feola is a Shanghai-based writer and musician, and RADII's Culture Editor. His coverage of Chinese music and art has appeared in The Wire, Dazed, Artsy, LEAP, Tiny Mix Tapes, and more. He's been active in China's underground music scene since 2010 via his booking platform pangbianr.com, and is a former member of Beijing bands Chui Wan, SUBS, and Vagus Nerve.