NINE TREASURES (13/12/2014 @ On Stage, Shanghai) | Aristocrazia Webzine

NINE TREASURES (13/12/2014 @ On Stage, Shanghai)

Event: Nine Treasures
Date: 13/12/2014
Location: On Stage, Shanghai,

My last live show in Shanghai for the year 2014, the Inner Mongolian folk metal band Nine Treasures was arguably the best way of closing a year dominated by really different things.

I had two great years here in Shanghai, full of all sorts of events. Nevertheless, metal hasn't exactly played a big role over this journey in the megalopolis on the mouth of the Changjiang river, more familiar with electronic music or other styles (you can find out more about it in my article on post-rock). Fortunately, I have managed to uncover a few small windows on what is happening in the world of distorted music in this huge country, after I had basically stopped in 2011 in this sense. Among the most memorable emerging names I can't but mention Nine Treasures, a folk metal band hailing from Inner Mongolia that we have already featured on our website on other occasions, such as the Midi Festival of Beijing and the Changjiang Midi Festival of Shanghai in 2013, and the release of their eponymous album at the end of the year.

The national tour for the release of their next EP was my chance to finally attend one of their shows out of a festival. The location was the unusual On Stage, that generally hosts experimental, acoustic, or electronic projects. This time the audience was mainly composed of boys and girls between 20 and 30 years old, the usual black t-shirts with lots of band logos on them, long hair here and there; in short, the kind of crowd we are used to seeing at metal shows (although definitely less bearded than the average). Almost out of spite, the venue's speakers were playing many symphonic folk metal tracks, quite unrelated to the quality that the Chinese band would have put on stage a few minutes afterwards.


After a slight delay, the four musicians set foot on stage accompanied by the intro to the second album, paving the way for a tornado of galloping and powerful riffs. As expected, the venue proved a tad too small to contain the energy of all those fans, always starting some moshing and headbanging at every occasion. There were not many people able to sing along in Mongolian, but those who could didn't miss the chance. The first hour of show was extremely intense featuring most of their best tracks, the band played well but without taking everything too seriously. We got to the intermission, when Tsog played an instrumental song played on his morin khuur, the famous two-stringed violin with a wooden horse head on top typical of Mongolian folk music (and one of the band's trademarks). During the last twenty minutes, Nine Treasures also played their new track "奔驰的白马" ("Galloping White Horse") – featuring all of their signature characteristics – and we could witness some kind of wall of death (the place was just too small, suitable to calmer music bands). As expected, they also performed an encore, going on to play their entire repertoire in a great concert.

Group Photo

After the show I managed to get a photo with them, aware of dealing with an emerging band that has already said something relevant in the international folk metal scene, so saturated and not abundant with interesting new names. This show closed my musical 2014 in Shanghai, see you all next year!