About us : China Blue

 

 

Peter Maes & Stefaan van Biesen [1986-2017].

 

 

"Without music life would be a mistake?"

For some years now, musician Peter Maes and visual artist Stefaan van Biesen have been working together as a duo and experimenting with sound and song structures. Their music collaboration covers a broad field of styles and influences, ranging from experimental music to soundscapes, from wave to ambiant. They worked on several projects, started with China Blue [1986], later with projects like B-Hive [a post wave project 2010], the Colour U / Head Wanderer Ensemble [2011] and China Blue [2015-2016].

 

Starting from a rock setting, their music has evolved to a more eclectic form, [a crossover], where all kinds of influences, from the classical avant-garde to alternative rock, have melted into one specific sound. Having opted for the guitar as their instrument, they use computers, sampling, keyboards and digital recordings of their surroundings to further their creation of a sound landscape of their own. In this way, they give music a more visual dimension. Inevitably, this has resulted into a series of compositions, written especially for video and art exhibitions.

 

 

 

 

China Blue 2016: Peter Maes [Fender guitar, samling, keyboard] and Stefaan van Biesen [Ibanez and acoustic Yamaha guitars, keyboard, drum programming and vocal].

 

At the moment we are not a live band. We like to compose new songs and compositions. We will see what the future will bring. Stefaan van Biesen is working individually as a sound artist in Europe.


Music recorded on Tascam DP-32SD and with computer software. Songwriting, lyrics, mixing and production: Stefaan van Biesen. We use Roland GP 8 guitar effects processor, Roland GR-55 guitar Synthesizer, Korg Micro X Synthesizer/controller, Roland Juno-6, Boss DR-880 drum programming, Boss RC-300 Loop Station, Digitech GNX 4 Guitar workstation, field recordings with Roland R-05 wave/MP3 recorder.

 

 

 

Vision

 

We live in an incredible time for art. There is no limit on creativity. Technology gives everyone the opportunity and possibility to explore. No more expensive studios, high production costs. Just you, ideas and a computer. We can create our own world easily.
Later on we can distribute our work on the net. There are a million different platforms to do so. Internet is undoubtedly one of the greatest democratic instruments with a enormous impact: with a click of our hand we all can create tracks and get them up on the net.


Some say that the internet has become an 'ocean of visual and musical garbage'. An inscrutable avalanche of sound, ideas and music. They fear that this overload leads to cultural decline and mediocrity. What if people start to feel comfortable with this? Cultural uniformity can be a dangerous evolution. The constant stream of fast to be consumed hypes has turned us into 'consumers' instead of 'listeners'. 


There is nothing new by saying that the Internet evolution caused a music industry that is dying in the way as we knew it. Bands can only survive financially by performing live. Downloading has changed the whole landscape. And how do interesting new talented bands survive in this cyber jungle? How can they be heard in the global noise and be picked up by curators and the media?


In this post industrial age we have to deal with social isolation, urban loneliness caused of the break of community. The paradox is that we all sit at home alone in our room being connected to the whole world. Maybe that is one of the reasons we want to re-define ourselves through the way of creativity.


Digital computer technology can give us the possibility to make things that sound or look arty and undoubtedly perfect. But can it replace the craft of the artist, the musician? No! Perfection in music is experienced as sterile, unearthly. Perfect digital art can lead to a sense of boredom. 'Imperfection' is a quality to music and man. Let us keep focused on concepts such as 'vulnerability', 'beauty' and 'imperfection'. It makes a difference in experiencing life and music.

 

 

China Blue is inspired by the music of:

Brian Eno, Syd Barrett, the early Pink Floyd, Peter Gabriel, David Sylvian, Japan, Roxy Music, Gustav Mahler, Robert Fripp, the Berlin period of David Bowie, Karlheinz Stockhausen, 'the day before you came' Abba, The Doors, Robby Krieger, Mark Hollis & Talk Talk, Gavin Bryars, the Velvet Underground, Björk, Angelo Badalamenti, Alison Goldfrapp & William Owen Gregory & all musicians and music that is dear to us...

 

 

 

 

Our new CD 'White Nights' [2017] and 'Moonlight Walk' [2016] : [Released on Bandcamp]

 

 

 

 

© private foundation van biesen-mestdagh 09.01.2017