Utopian 烏托邦

Live review from Underground Heavy #9:


1. 花火
2. 閃光燈
3. 演繹

4. 缺氧

Utopian also suffered at the hands of the no-soundcheck night, as they too had a bit of dead air before they could start their set, but they compensated for it by beginning their set with a huge burst of thick, fuzzy, overpowering guitar. They were the most noodly band of the night, taking every chance they could to put a bit of a noodly guitar fill into a corner of a song, and even into the putative levels check! However, the guitarist managed to make it non-wanky, by not doing it for too long, so kudos on the restraint (relatively speaking). Their music is full of echoing guitars typically played to open a song (as on 花火 and 演繹), in the style of what remained of alt rock in the early 2000s, with edgy-feeling chords set to fast but essentially groove-less drums. They fall into the mainstream of 2000s rock, very much within the Linkin’ Park style – but better, because these guys don’t feature any rapping. They do, however, feature screaming, which is good. However, I (and some others in the crowd) felt that they reverted to a hackneyed Canto-metal style when the screaming stopped, as on 缺氧, which was not only jarring but also a little boring. The band got very into their performance and this was infectious, and good to watch. However, I dare say that the habitual listener of metal-esque music might find them prosaic and true-to-type, for they stay within the bounds of late 90s alt rock and early Noughties’ rock, and this does affect how interesting their songs are. However, they were fun to watch, and served as a good way to close the show in a headbangin’ way.

— Shashwati Kala

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Performances by Utopian 烏托邦: