In the second instalment of our 'Choice Picks_' playlisting series, we're excited to collaborate with Hong Kong-Australian artist Rainbow Chan, who often takes her audience on mysterious journeys in immersive, electronic soundscapes dotted with artefacts of her diasporic culture. She shares a playlist of ten personal favourites, weaving them into a cohesive narrative that naturally adheres to her eclectic, east-meets-west aesthetic. Here's to everything you didn't know about up-and-coming East Asian electronic/hip-hop/alternative acts and the innovative ways they're getting their crafts to market.
01. Promises - Rainbow Chan
An ode to new feelings and new places.
02. Yat Pit ft. Yung Takeem - YoungQueenz & N.O.L.Y & Floyd Cheung
This track was written for Hong Kong’s rising star, Yat Pit, a local fashion label whose past campaigns have been shot by the late Ren Hang. It sees cult figures in the Hong Kong underground hip-hop scene working together, including YoungQueenz who has an unmistakable growl.
03. Slow dancing in the dark - Joji
I can’t get over this little ear worm. Love Joji’s use of sparkling arpeggiated synth lines, languid pitch bends and a dramatic, soaring and VERY karaoke-friendly chorus. Check out its beautiful film clip too.
04. Migration - ASJ
ASJ is a talented producer, DJ and friend from Hong Kong. When she’s not crafting her multi-layered and infectious beats, she’s teaching kids how to use the abacus - what a legend!
05. Escapism - Hyphy11e
Hard-hitting, crunchy and all about the build up, this song is by Shanghainese producer, Hyph11e. Check out the remix by Tzusing as well.
06. CSR - Rainbow Chan
My sister was teaching me some Cantonese slang recently. I wanted to write a song around the idea of having a spark with someone, Taat Zoek, which literally means to ignite.
07. Fenlie - Faye Wong
Faye Wong is a true pop icon who’s been active since the 90s and is known for her shape-shifting image. You may know her from Wong Kar-Wai films. This track’s title means to fracture or to split and was written by Cocteau Twins specifically for Faye.
08. Kids Only Anthem - Leah Dou
Keeping it in the fam! Leah Dou is the daughter of Faye Wong who made her debut on a Faye Wong track at just one year old. Not only do I love her unconventional and poetic writing but I also love her bold, androgynous style which challenges traditional views of Chinese femininity.
09. No Response - Kelvin T
I recently watched Kelvin T talk about his music at Hong Kong Community Radio during a beatmaker workshop run by ASJ. His production is increasingly moving away from the computer and is made on hardware, which is why you can hear fluctuations in tempo and pitch. I love how organic it sounds.
10. Dong Leng Cha ft. Fotan Laiki - Bloodz Boi
Dong Leng Cha means Iced Lemon Tea, a favourite drink of mine during Hong Kong's humid Summers. This collaboration traverses Beijing and Hong Kong via rappers Bloodz Boi and Fotan Laiki.