Sad China shows you what they’re made of in the new single and video hum人n — premiering exclusively on Tinnitist.
The fourth single from the Vancouver indie-pop singer-songwriter’s imminent bilingual hyperpop quarantine album ilyimy, hum人n is disarmingly beautiful in its execution and understatedly powerful in its intent. Flowing and frictionless, the cut gracefully glides along, its subliminally skittery groove decorated with pulsing keyboards and dusty sonics, as Sad China sweetly serenades you with intertwining vocals and defiantly empowering lyrics.
“As a nonbinary Asian Canadian, assigned female at birth, I’ve endured misogyny, abuse, fetishization, and other forms of violence simply by being gendered and racialized (which are social constructs upheld by people and organizations to maintain the white supremacist heteropatriachy), especially within Vancouver’s music and art scene,” says Sad China. “As a human, all I want is to love, belong, and create. When we feel alone during our darkest nights, or are unable to access community, our ancestors keep watch over us. We need allies to redistribute power and wealth to us, so we can escape, heal, and thrive. You will be safe and respected, and we’re stronger together.”
Sad China (aka Sunny Chen) is a queer non-binary settler immigrant on the stolen ancestral homelands of Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh Nations, colonially known as Vancouver. They released their self-titled debut EP of dreampop in 2016. Sad China’s sound is avant-garde yet accessible, drawing influence from 2000s pop and R&B, their Chinese heritage, and the choral arrangements they performed with multiple choirs. They’ve shared the stage with Tonye Aganabe and Adewolf, and played livestreams with KeAloha, Sleepy Gonzales, and Blonde Diamond, among other local stars.
Their debut studio album ilyimy — arriving Friday — features supersonic collabs with Kerub, pseudo-antigone, Khamisa, and more. This bilingual hyperpop quarantine album, written in Mandarin and English, paves the way forward for multilingual musicians in Western Canada, and croons for solidarity between Black, Indigenous, and Asian communities. Above all, Sad China wants to love, belong, and be respected.