I was feeling antsy yesterday, needing something different to do instead of just sitting in my hotel room bed and waiting for the script translation to finish, so I googled what events would Beijing have going on – and just by accident, I noticed a Finnish heavy metal band Battle Beast was playing not five kilometers away from the office! Although I can’t say I’m a huge fan, I thought it’s a great way to spend an evening, so I arranged tickets and headed over there. This would be my second time I see a metal band play in China – last time was Gorgoroth show in Hong Kong many years ago on Iron Sky 1’s release tour.
I arrived to the venue way too early, got my ticket and wandered off to the small Hutong streets, and found a little corner restaurant where I enjoyed a beer and some lamb skewers before the show. The venue was just like these rock venues are, in a pretty good shape and of a good size for the band like Battle Beast, and the sounds were pretty good, too. It was fun to see Chinese metalheads suddenly appearing all around, when normally you don’t see them anywhere. I spotted tens of familiar band t-shirts, just like in any European metal club, and to my great surprise, the people really seemed to know Battle Beast the band and even some of their songs, which is interesting since I’ve hardly even heard of them before. Big in China, I guess. And it’s pretty good idea to be big in China, since, well, it’s a big country!
The evening was nice, but also I did feel like not really belonging there. During the whole evening, not one person approached me or spoke to me, so apart from the sideway glances, I was left pretty much alone. After the show I thought about getting a cab, but realized it’s not easy, and ended up walking few kilometers instead, and found myself close to the place where I had the burger the other day – Great Leap Brewing. And indeed, I was feeling a bit hungry despite the lamb skewers, and decided to pop in for a glass of high-quality craft beer and one of the best burgers I’ve had in my life.
Again, I was left alone, but the curious glances are constant. I realize i don’t really fit in here, being a European giant among the normal folk, but it’s still getting a bit on my nerves.
Later on, I found a way to get a taxi and headed homewards. The metal show was a nice interruption to my daily routines here, and the burger is always a wonderful way to end the day, so all in all, I had a pretty nice day.
Well, given the circumstances, at least…