Interview With No Party For Cao Dong 草東沒有派對-Going With The (Post-Rock) Flow: How A Band Subconsciously Became A Musical Representation Of Taiwanese Contemporary Society
No Party For Cao Dong are a dichotomy. They are elusive; yet easy to talk to. They travel widely, and have toured the world with their music; yet gather inspiration exclusively from their experiences in Taiwan, the environment where they grew up in. Their music has had such a revolutionary impact on the scene, earning them multiple accolades and earfuls of praise; yet they are humble and subdued when asked about their achievement. The phrase that came up most during the interview was ‘沒有想那麼多 Didn’t think too much about it’, which seems to be part of the band’s musical philosophy.
The band, made up of Wood Lin, Chu Chu, Sam Yang, and Fan Tsai started as many do-with a group of friends who liked the same kinds of music. While the former three members met in high school, Fan Tsai met them while in university and that was how it all began.
“Everyone liked the same kinds of music, so starting a band seemed natural. Through a shared interest we added our own colours to the mix.”
Indeed, despite the band’s heavy-handed taste in genres which range from post-rock, indie to metal, their approach has always been to go with what comes naturally. Saying that they don’t use genres to restrict themselves, amongst thrashing drums, impassioned screams and subdued electric guitar riffs No Party For Cao Dong found a unique sound that shook up the local scene.
“We don’t go out of our way to use ‘mainstream’ or ‘indie’ to categorise our music, whether something is mainstream or not is defined by the time period and audience.”
An (albeit dark) breath of fresh air for a scene which has long been criticised for a lack of differentiation and too many soft love songs, the band says all they’re trying to do here is express themselves.
“Everyone tells their story differently, we are just trying our best to honestly express ourselves.”