Chinese American Bear – “Stars”


Seattle-based married duo Bryce Barsten and Anne Tong comprise the act Chinese American Bear, producing a magnetic vein of Chinese dream-pop. Their new track “Stars” is wholly dedicated to its spacey, dazed charm; lyrically the track is “about feeding noodles to the universe as they [Chinese American Bear] travel about the galaxy.”

“Stars” rides on suave guitars and a hypnotic bass initially. Tong’s engaging vocals inject a serenely melodic pull; the addition of wordless backing vocals past the one-minute mark adds beautifully to the lush production. The track balances psych-rock guitar tones with dream-pop sophistication, resulting in a riveting sound.

The duo will be releasing their debut full-length album, self-titled CHINESE AMERICAN BEAR, on July 8th.

Barsten and Tong elaborate more on the project and its use of the Chinese language:

“Chinese is a beautiful language, and it’s simpler than English in so many ways. People around the world really grab onto English lyrics. And there really aren’t many bands in the US, or anywhere outside of China making Chinese lyrical music. We want to bring that same energy and universal feeling with the use of Chinese in our music.”

This track and others featured this month can be streamed on the updating Obscure Sound’s ‘Best of May 2022’ Spotify playlist.

The track is also featured in the genre-based, best-of Spotify compilation Emerging Dream-Pop.

Mike Mineo

I'm the founder/editor of Obscure Sound, which was formed in 2006. Previously, I wrote for PopMatters and Stylus Magazine.

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