once the make up is on I switch into a different gear...
On this planet but in another dimension.
So you are a musician duo. How did you meet? Are you two dating?
We met outside of a bar in Beijing called Dada which is famous for eclectic DJ sets, cocktails that get you really saucy, and people hooking for one night stands. However we didn't do that: we were introduced by a mutual friend because Susu wanted to make a band. She had actually seen the then one man band version of GUIGUISUISUI play a few weeks before but didn't recongnise Guigui without his 'warpaint'. We met up for coffee a few days after and really hit in off. That was about one and a half years ago. We'll be getting married this year.
So Susu can play guitar right? Is it intimidating to think that she might out-guitar you on stage one day?
Nope, not all. She's picked up the guitar really quickly and I love how she approaches the instrument. If she does upstage me that would be awesome, because if GGSS hinged solely on me being a guitar hero that'd be a pretty weak sauce band in my opinion. Also when she plays guitar it gives me the freedom to just sing or play harmonica or make some Gameboy noise which is a nice break.
Susu has been before as a tourist so now she wants to go and find out about the underground music of Bangkok,in her words she wants "something to happen". Guigui is looking forward to watching some new bands play and meeting friends, old and new.
The zombie face paint is pretty cool. Are you a misfits/Danzig fan or just like makeup?
When I first started doing the 'warpaint' it was very Misfits influenced, there used to be a bunch of Misfits numbers in the one man band set. The last full GGSS album 'Write Me A Death Letter' has a definite Misfits influence in the sound. However it's developed over time into separate thing. First of all it's transformative, people are not just watching two people on a stage. They are are watching two beings from another world. It's transformative for me as well: once the make up is on I switch into a different gear, even if I'm feeling down or really sick I get a rush of adrenaline and I'm ready to go on stage. I change how I move, how I hold myself, how I speak. The make up first appeared almost three years ago and there hasn't been a show without it since, and it's expanded with different masks and personas, different movements within the show.
Simply put, sometimes it's boring to be yourself so why not try being somebody or something else for a change?
All of them. From the first one in 2013 which was a handful of dates in China, South Korea and Japan to this one around China and Thailand with the love of my life. I'm at one of my happiest moments when I'm on the road honing my craft. Some memorable moments that stick out: noise bombing on the street in East Java, Indonesia (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hUgxGVustvU); getting deported from Indonesia on arrival for not having enough pages in my passport; playing with Hu Si Di Dai (https://soundcloud.com/hsdd/hsdd) in Ipoh, Malaysia to one of most awesome crowds I've ever witnessed; almost setting fire to a DIY venue in Osaka, Japan; playing for a bunch of metal heads tripping on acid in a dingy warehouse in Levin, New Zealand; sitting in teepee in the somewhere in the Carpathian mountains in Poland making shamanic noise around a roaring fire. Playing with Pairs, God Bows To Math, Blackie from the Hard Ons, playing with my dad...yeah, too many to mention right here...I've written zines about my travels and at some point I'll sit down and put them into a book.
What is the scene in China like?
Susu says the Chinese scene is always developing. She says Beijing is more international so you can meet more different people with different opinions and sounds. China in general is more international so more than before Chinese people can learn about and get into trends happening elsewhere in the world. This makes her want to go out and experience more scenes elsewhere. Then again there's never been a really popular Chinese rock band making an impact internationally. There's a lot of Chinese influence around the world today (eg. art, film, business, techbology) but not really any Chinese rock and roll band influencing people in other countries compared to foreign bands influencing Chinese kids. Chinese rock bands mostly influence Chinese people, there's not many kids in North America or Europe picking up a guitar because they heard a Chinese rock band. A band like Nirvana would be the opposite, because they've influenced people all over the world.
Guigui says China is too big and he understand too little to even attempt to answer that question.
Yes. Susu doesn't want to say anything more on that as she's Chinese. I will say that you can get away with certain things and certain things you cannot, it's a matter of treading softly around the great dragon. Also what may have been OK five years ago might not be OK today, the situation is changing a lot recently.
What is it like being a Westerner in China? Is it easy to fit in and be accepted?
I have a lot of time to do things that make me happy. I have the option to not listen to the things people are saying when they honestly don't interest me in the slightest, like I can just tune it out. I don't like it when sitting on a bus and I have listen to people's mundane conversations. I can sit in my house and read with my cat curled up in my lap and not worry about paying the rent. I don't really fit in at home in the UK so I'm not worried about fitting in anywhere, I just try my best to fit in with myself.
What is your favourite Star Wars character and why?
Susu likes R2D2 because it is cute and pure. I like Obi Wan Kenobi because he's got some deep Zen vibes and rad skills with the lightsaber.
Why should people come to your shows in Bangkok/Chiang Mai this February?
Because they can be part of the constantly shifting bizarro story that is GUIGUISUISUI. Whether you love it or hate it's a show you'll probably remember for quite a while.
COME SEE GUIGUISUISUI!
w/ Plastic Section, Voodoo Ward and Lowfat
Saturday 6th of February @ Bar21, RCA (Old Cosmic Cafe)
w/ Jinta, The Sangsom Massacre, Voodoo Ward and John Will Sail
They play one in Chiang Mai also
Itchy Bands crew
(guiguisuisui means sneaky)