Painkiller Heavy Music Magazine

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Painkiller Heavy Music Magazine 《重型音乐》杂志 (zhòng xíng yin yuè zá zhì)


Painkiller Productions 重型音乐制作 (zhòng xíng yin yuè zhì zuò)

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Company Legal registered enterprise for print media productions
Circulation bi-monthly periodical
Quantity 12.000 to 15.000 copies per issue
Distribution Over all important Cities on Mainland China, Hongkong and Taiwan
Content Mainly HEAVY/POWER/PROGRESSIVE/NEW/THRASH/DEATH/BLACK METAL and Hard Core, Hard Rock, Gothic, international + inland scene, underground activities and signed acts. Interviews, reviews, sound check etc. But also little Alternative, Industrial, Core and Mainstream. Text written in Chinese only. Full color Poster of well known acts.
Pages 204 full color pages in professional design
Size: 210x285mm sized pages printed on high quality paper
Layout: Professional art designer.
The Team Insiders of the record selling/Metal-scene/Underground, musicians and professionals also in computing, design and print media. The main editors are in Beijing, some in other parts of China. They speak Chinese, English and German.
Bonus a) A1-sized Poster in full color!
b) a professional web representation with the news contents and special activities.
c) CD-releases and promotion for Chinese underground bands.
Distribution Whole-China distribution for newspapers and magazines. The magazine is also available in chosen music and CD stores etc.
Activities Painkiller is also deeply involved in local live music industry, including booking, production and project development/mangament for touring, indoor concerts and festivals! Promotion and Support for China′s Metal Bands!
Magazines Check out the master list



We are a horde of guys, who are into Metal as hell. Since there hasn’t been a legal Metal Magazine yet in "Red China", so we found Painkiller Mag to support our Chinese own Metal. The scene is growing, we want to give our best. For this we worked very hard a whole year to bring things to the right order (it was not easy to deal with the government!). In the end, the first blood dropped in September 2000 and we are very proud of it. Hope you can help us with to manage things better. Take us on your promotion-list. We are thankful for every kind of support of yours! - from their web page


Painkiller Magazine 《重型音乐》杂志 (zhòng xíng yin yuè zá zhì) was originally formed by some metal fans in Beijing in 2000. After almost a year of preparation, the first issue came out on a huge release party concert at Volcano Disco (火山迪厅) with 22 rock and metal bands from Beijing. The first issue turned out to be a huge success and sold out very soon, even though due to the high print costs, the retail price was 30 RMB (back then not cheap at all).

Painkiller kept issuing the magazine in unregular publishing periods at first and within two years, it settled by 3 issues a year. The quantity also rose from 3000 copies of the first issue to later 20.000 at its peek time before SARS happened in 2003. With the increasing popularity of online and new media, print numbers of all periodicals in China dropped down dramatically, but Painkiller Magazine managed to stay stable with issuing quatity of curently about 12.000 to 15.000 copies.

Yang Yu, who had his own metal magazine "Evil Message Mag" and worked long years for AFM Records when he was in Germany, brought in his old contacts from Europe to help Painkiller Magazine build up his recognition outside China and improve its content. A small network of oversea corresponding editors and reporters slowly emerged with time with Sun Yue in the U.K. and now Denmark, famous photographer George Chin in the U.K., Micheal Sean in the U.S., Al Di in Canada (till his return in 2007), Yang Yu's former colleague Andreas Stappert (now editor at Rock Hard) in Gemany, etc.

Since several years, long term relationships between famous international labels and record companies has been established, e.g. AFM Records, Nuclear Blast, Century Media, Wacken Records, etc. As one of the first and still til today almost the only music magazine in China, Painkiller remains in regular contact with the international scene and conduct CD reviews and interviews with international labels and management/promotion companies directly. To each issue, their will be an exlusive label report featuring interviews of bands and song contribution of the label on the cover CD.

Meanwhile, Painkiller's artistic supervisor and designer Zakk Wu started a project to print metal shirts for the readership, mostly with his own designs. Occasionly, bands shirt deals were also done for both international and local bands. Dragon Skin is the establishment for those shirts. Due to increasing activities in the live show production, less time could be spend on doing new designs these days, but when every you go to a local metal show in Beijing, you'd still see kids wearing one of the Dragon Skin-shirts.

Since the beginning, the Painkiller crew would also do local concerts with metal bands regularily. Mostly in the old Get Lucky Bar, where they provided a new home for metal bands, who previously didnt have a steady place to perfome. Later now, new clubs opened such as Nameless Highland and 13 Club. In 2004, an offer came in to do a concert for an italian power metal band, Labyrinth. Painkiller as the first local institution took the oppurtunity and inacted a great show for all metal fans and like-minded peers in the scene. 2 years later, the first real challange came in, to do a show with the famous Germany metal band Edguy, which turned out to be a success as well and boosted Painkiller's reputation within the domnestic scene. A lot VIPs of the local music business and media attended the show and they all were thrilled by the quality of the gig. Since then, Painkiller has mapped themselves as local promoter for foreigner bands. German gothic giants Lacrimosa followed in October that year which broke the record of attended visitor number in Star Live. Before long, Painkiller started to do shows almost non stop.

With the success of its live shows, a lot other companies and organisations outside of the metal realm started to pay attention to Painkiller's quality and ability to organize concerts and live show. Soon, a lot collaboration projects came in, where Painkiller Productions worked as production team. At first in collaboration with Midi Festival, later Pilot Records, InMusic Festival, Goethe Institute/Germany Embassy, Danish Rock Council ROSA, MuSex/Finnish Embassy, the British Embassy, etc., which also led Painkiller to get more and more involved onto the area of cultural exchange. And with the fast development of Chinese festivals, more and more festival organizers engage Painkiller to be their booking agent and/or production team, e.g. Westlake Festival, Kama Love Festival, Yixian Music Festival, just to mention a few.

In 2008, a collaboration between Painkiller and Wacken Open Air was initiated for W.O.A.'s international band contest project Metal Battle. Painkiller therefore started to organize a series of band competition events under this banner and contributes the winning band of each year to participate on the international final battle on the annual W.O.A. festival in Germany.

The more shows Painkiller is doing the broader the spectrum of band choices and it goes beyond the limitation of the metal genre. In collaboration with different local partners, Painkiller is now also often invoved in live shows featuring a diversity of music styles including indie rock, jazz, electro/DJ, pop, etc.

After more than a decade since its establishment, Painkiller has become an solid institution in Chinese rock and live music market. Future focuses are to expand the live show sectoer, building up a better international network for culture exchange purposes and construct a new online plattform to combine sources for better communication.

Main Accomplishments

As Media and Content Provider

  • bi-monthly full color magazine with 12 - 15 tsd. print quantity
    • Painkiller Magazine set new standards for Chinese music periodicals not only in the quality of layout and design but also the way how to keep update with international music happenings
    • this magazine was one of the first who constantly kept an direct dialogue with oversea labels and bands and opened up a new path of discourse for international artists to reach their Chinese fans (most of them are still non English speakers)
    • to provide a bigger picture about the international metal scene, Painkiller started a series of label reports, one label each issue including in depth interview with label manager and leading bands and a cover CD with all important label signings. AFM Rec., Nuclear Blast, Metal Blade, Century Media, Soulfood, Earache, Massacre Rec., Season of Mist, Napalm Rec., Candlelight, Indie Records, etc.
    • with all the first hand messages/information provided through exclusive interviews and in-depth introduction stories about sub genres of metal (e.g. death metal, thrash, NWoBHM, industrial, NDH, gothic, emo core, grunge, etc.), Painkiller has become metal education and metal bible which opened up the minds to those who hungered for insights.
    • exclusive and extending interviews with cult bands like Quorthon/Bathory, Judas Priest, Iron Maiden, Scorpions etc. and articles about Rammstein's lyrics or Metallica's "St. Anger" opened a new world not only for fans but also for Painkiller, bringing attention, recognition and respect from the non-metal part of China's rock community.
    • it's not surprising to find people from the main stream media industry among Painkiller's readership and they cherish it as a valueable source of information.
    • next to standard features such as reviews of releases, concerts or hardware/gears/backline, interviews, label reports, genre introductions, etc., it also has become a tradition to introduce influencial cover art work artists, write articles about horror movies and doing the photo contest of Chinese gothic girls.

  • different online community plattforms / webzine / blogging
    • before the big bang of Chinese new media boom of today, the online plattform (forum) was THE gathering place for all Chinese metal fans to meet, talk and share. Now there are more places to go and Painkiller provide different places for online communication
    • certain type of contents are shifted now to online places such as official pages on micro blogs, social networks, etc., also the official website takes slowly shape of a webzine and in deed Painkiller is going to extend the formerly ordinary home page into a more inter active web presence soon. For now, a selection of interivews and reviews/stories are also published on the official website.

  • merchandise provider with own designs and band shirts (Dragon Skin/Painseller)
    • out of a simply necessity, namingly the lack of metal shirts available, Painkiller's artistic supervisor Zakk Wu started a project to design and print metal shirts and gave it the label name "Dragon Skin", now those original designs of metal wear have become a trademark of Painkiller
    • with the opening of the online shop Dragon Skin, Painkiller also offered import CDs from collaborative oversea labels, but this attempt to distribute hard copies of music has been dropped later due to lack of time and demand

  • content contribution and provider for other media parters (domnestic and international)
    • because of Painkiller's strong connection to European and Northern American music scene, many other media people asked for them to help on conducting interviews and reports of western artists, e.g. HitMusic Magazine, music sections of Sohu, Sina, QQ/Tencent, etc.
    • with the network of it's oversea reporters and partners, Painkiller also provides content and contacts to western magazines and online media to report about Chinese bands and the scene, e.g. UK corespondant and famouse fotography George Chin has been invited to Midi Festival to do a video report about the festival on behalf of German metal magazine Rock Hard.

As Promoter/Booker/Live Show Production

  • organizing and conducting live shows projects and events
    • a selection of self promoted gigs: LABYRINTH May 2004 Beijing, EDGUY Mar 2006 Beijing, LACRIMOSA Oct 2006 Beijing, EDENBRIDGE/VOA Jan 2007 Beijing, IN THIS MOMENT Feb 2008 Beijing, BEHEMOTH Oct 2008 Beijing, DESTRUCTION May 2009, MXPX May 2009 Beijing, PTSMALL Dec 2009 Shanghai, ENSIFERUM Jan 2010 Beijing and Shanghai, SAOSIN Jan 2010 Beijing, ASSASSIN March 2010 Beijing, PSYCROPTIC Jul 2010 Beijing, THE RAVEONETTES Nov 2010 Beijing, MARDUK Dec 2010 Beijing, HEAVEN SHALL BURN Sep 2010 Beijing, DYING FETUS Sep 2010 Beijing, EXODUS Sep 2010 Beijing, OPETH Feb 2012 Beijing, LAMB OF GOD Feb 2012 Shanghai, etc.
    • in 2010, after gaining enough experiences on live shows and festival production, the Painkiller crew conducted their first real festival, namingly the Yixian Festival in collaboration with the Yixian county government and the local TV. With FUNERAL FOR A FRIEND and MNEMIC headlining the 3 day event, broadcasted live on local TV, it has become a huge success.
    • the try out with the 1st Taishan Beer Festival was less spectacular but still as successful, which convinced the local authorities in culture to continue the concept for following years.

  • booking international famous artists for the Chinese live music market
    • in partnership with Icon Promotions Painkiller has become the official booking agents for div. Chinese companies, promotors and festival organizers
    • booking and production for head lining bands on different outlets of Midi Festival with SOULFLY, SHADOWS FALL, LOUDNESS, MR. BIG, EXODUS, KYTE, SKID ROW, FINTROLL, THE AGONIST etc.
    • booking and production for Inter City Festival 2011 contributions such as BIOHAZARD, BLACK MOTOR CYCLE CLUB and PRETTY RECKLESS.
    • booking and production for head liner ILL NINO at InMusic Festival 2011
    • booking and production for head liner THESE NEW PURITANS at Hangzhou West Lake Festival 2010

  • offering live show production service for festivals, tours and indoor gigs:
    • for projects by Goethe Institut Peking and German Esplanade (German Music Night I and II with DORO and CORVUS CORAX) and artist care for DEINE LAKAIEN at Goethe Institut Peking's 20th Anniversary Concert
    • logistics, artist care and services for German Esplanade 2007-2010 (and emergency solution and crisis management due to earth quake)
    • production and stagemanagement for Midi Festival, Modern Sky Festival, InMusic Festival etc.
    • production crew for EAGLES Beijing concert (light and sound department)
    • festival production for Kama Love Festival 2011: technical supervisor, logistics and artist care for oversea bands, stage management and backstage management of the main stage, including arstists like EELS, NOUVELL VAGUE, THESE NEW PURITANS, LISA ONO, KATRINE MADSEN etc. There was also an indoor concert in Shanghai with EELS and NOUVELL VAGUE.
    • project management and production for Pilot Records (e.g. indoor gigs with TESTAMENT, ILL NINO, BLACK MOTOR CYCLE CLUB, PRETTY RECKLESS, STORY OF THE YEAR etc.)

As partner for Culture Exchange

  • consulting and concept development / conduction and production of events and projects
    • e.g. for projects by Goethe Institut Peking and Germany and China together in Movement
    • in collaboration with Finish Embassy and MuSex for Helfest Beijing and Shanghai, live shows at Shanghai World ExPO and other indoor concerts (FINTROLL, STRATOVARIUS, NEGATIVE, TURISAS, BEFORE THE DOWN, ENSIFERUM)
    • China Tours with HATESPHERE in 2007, RAUNCHY and DEBAUCHERY in 2008, MNEMIC in 2010 - in collaboration with Danish Rock Council ROSA and Music Export Danmark MXD
    • Beijing gigs with visiting German bands on cultural exchange missions with SUBWAY TO SALLY, ASSASSIN, etc.
    • since 2008, Painkiller has become the official Chinese organizer of Wacken's annual band contest Metal Battle
    • November 2011 the director Sam Dunn of the infamous "Global Metal" documentary film came to China to shoot about the Chinese metal scene, Painkiller helped his crew to access to all contacts he needed, even organized an indoor festival with 7 of the best Chinese metal acts for shooting purposes.

  • assistance and volunteering work for international requests and interests
    • creating the wiki website to provide information about Chinese rock and alternative music
    • creating the info website to promote Nothern European culture events in China
    • several members of Painkiller are board members at the non profit organization to help on collaborations between Germany and China on music projects
    • workshops and exchange events with oversea bands at Chinese music schools (Marie Batchelder, Abigail Washburn etc. at Midi Music School, LABYRINTH at Beijing Modern Music School, ASSASSIN at Beijing Drum School, etc.)
    • presentations about Chinese music market at PopKomm by Yang Yu, attendances to several international industry forums, meetings and exhibitions
    • helping Chinese bands like Suffocated, Raging Mob, Narakam etc. to have their albums produced, mixed or mastered by German engineers
    • assisting oversea bands on their tour in China (e.g. ALEV, THE OCEAN, KARIN PARK, MARIE BATCHELDER, ABIGAIL WASHBURN, DEBAUCHERY, etc)
    • Painkiller also tries hard to bring Chinese bands aboard, e.g. Brain Failure participation on festivals in Taiwan, or bringing Suffocated to Wacken in 2012, etc.


A list of bands Painkiller worked with at live music projects and div. occasions:


A list of collaborative partners:


  • Jagermeister
  • Zippo
  • Gibson
  • Marshall
  • Vans


A list of long term relationships to international labels (label reports):

AFM Records, Black Lodge, Black Mark, Candlelight, Century Media, Earache, Einheitsproduktionen, Indie Records, Inside Out, Lifeforce, Listenable, Mascot Records, Massacre Records, Metal Blade, Mighty Music, Morbid Records, Nuclear Blast, Osmose Productions, Prophecy, Relapse, Roadrunner, Scarlet, Season of Mist, Soulfood, Stay Heavy, Unique Leader, Wacken Records, etc.


the founding members are:

current editorial staff:

  • Sheen Shao 绍女先 (editor, rewrite)
  • Freddy Cai 才华 (editor, rewrite, communication, is is also a founding member of
  • Liu Jiang 刘江 aka 赤潮 (chi cháo, editor, famous Chinese rock music critic)
  • Tori Xu (graphic design)
  • Chen Qian 陈倩 (graphic design)

oversea corespondants:

  • Sun Yue in the U.K. and now Danmark
  • George Chin in the U.K., famous photographer
  • Steve Rosen in the U.A., famous music critic and author
  • Simona Drevensek in Finland, now in the U.S.
  • Micheal Sean in the U.S.
  • Andreas Stappert in Germany
  • Mallory Zou 邹雷 annual reporter at Wacken Open Air, Germany
  • Azchael aka Max L. von Schaper in Germany, India, Hongkong and Macao

former editorial lineups also included:

  • Chen Xi 陈曦 (co-founder, arrangements, later founder of Mort Productions),
  • Yao Jin 姚进 (editor, later project management of Mort Productions),
  • Shen Xiaoming 沈晓明 (editor, later founder of Nether Flute)
  • Wang Xiao 王骁 (editor, later editor in chief of Extrem Music Magazine and founder of 666 Rock Shop)
  • Al Di 邸威 (editor, oversea reporter til 2007, now project and booking manager at Gehua LiveNation)




  • September 21st 2007: Painkiller's Yu Yang gets invited to the Asien Pazifik Wochen Berlin Market Overview: China in Berlin, Germany
  • September 19th 2007: Painkiller's Yu Yang gets invited to the Popkomm Market Overview China and Networking Session in Berlin, Germany

Organized Shows and other Projects

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here are only some important shows listed among too many to be counted ...

  • June 2008, The Metal Battle 2008 China concert series in Beijing in cooperation with Wacken Open Air 2008.
  • 17th Feb 2008, In This Moment (US) and Head Phone Presidents (JP) and LR concert in Beijing
  • Jan 2008,Painkiller participated as crew for Nightwish and Dream Theater gigs done by Modern Player Magazine and
  • Oct 2007, Painkiller did the 2nd Stage of Modern Sky Festival in Haidian Park and after gigs with japanese metal band Metal Safari
  • 29. July 2007, organizing the TESTAMENT show in Beijing with Japanese death/thrashers GRIM FORCE and chn. Suffocated as warm up bands.
  • 27. July 2007 a tribute to TESTAMENT show at M.A.O. Live House with chn. metal bands
  • May 2007, organized China tour for HATESPEHERE (Photos)
  • 4. May 2007, organized the 2nd stage at Midi Music Festival 2007
  • 8. December 2006, Beijing, 13 Club, Tribute to Dime (by PK & Dean Guitar China), Ordnance, Hades, Last Chance of Youth, Oxygen Can, Zuo You, Doomsblade (Poster)
  • 13. Oktober 2006, Beijing, Star Live Club, LACRIMOSA (photos)
  • 15. September 2006, Beijing, Star Live Club, Painkiller Mag 6th anniversary, Hades, Suffocated, Yaksa, Last Chance of Youth, Nether Flute (Poster)
  • 15. September 2000, Beijing, Volcano Disco, Painkiller 1st Release Party, Yaksa, Tomahawk, Stale Corpse, Ordnance, Ritual Day, Suffocated, Bloodbath, Glorious Pharmacy, Crimson Flag, etc. 22 Bands and over 1000 visitors!!!
  • Events organized by Painkiller as listed on Rock in China

Further Information

Official Websites (and affiliates)

Further Coverage