Interview: Memphis Based Indie Rock Band China Gate

China Gate music

China Gate is a Memphis based indie rock band who recently released their latest project entitled "Good Grief", featuring the single "Covered In Flames". We connected with the band to find out more about the rock music scene in Memphis, how the band was formed, and much more.

After reading our exclusive Q&A with China Gate, be sure to follow them on social media and stream/download "Good Grief" below.  

When most people think about Memphis music, Blues, Country and Elvis Presley most likely come to mind. Tell us about the music scene in your city now, especially for rock music. 

There is a pretty big punk/garage scene in Memphis because of Goner records. There were some incredible bands in the late 2000's like Jay Reatard, Magic Kids, The Barbaras. There is a group of younger bands in Memphis including China Gate like Melinda, Harlan, Elf Rage that we feel pretty connected to musically. 

If you had to describe your new EP "Good Grief" in three words to a stranger, which words would you select?

Sad, sounding, happy.

Speaking of the 'Good Grief' EP, describe your creative process in writing and recording the songs. Were there other songs recorded that you decided not to include on the project? If so, why?

No we set out to record just those four songs. We are doing a full length this summer though. 

How did the five of you connect and form the band? And where does the name "China Gate" originate?

(Tiger Adams): Walt, and Conner and I have been friends and bandmates since early high school. We met Harry and Kyle at the University of Memphis. China Gate is a reference to the great cosmic jazz hero Sun Ra. 

In terms of developing the "China Gate" sound and differentiating yourselves from other bands like Bright Eyes and Wilco, how would you say that you stand out from the pack?

Yeah I don't really see the Bright Eyes thing, but after every show at least one person says that. So I don't really know how to answer it, just because I'm not familiar enough with his music. I guess with Wilco we are more high energy or play faster music!

Stream/Download "Good Grief" by China Gate

Connect with China Gate: Facebook | Bandcamp