HIS OFFICE is packed with hundreds of CDs and records that spill out of shelves and on to the floor, while others, like mini-towers, are stacked on every surface. This is the Tsim Sha Tsui workplace of Yuen Chi-chung, chief editor of Music Colony Bi-weekly (MCB), Hong Kong's leading music magazine. Wearing a T-shirt and jeans and sitting among this CD- and magazine-strewn canyon, Yuen recalls how his career as a music critic took hold. It began with a passion for music. He first came across Western music on the radio, and later he was thrilled after listening to some of the records of a classmate's sister when he was in Primary Six. Then he began to read mainstream music magazines. But his life dramatically changed the day he read Rock Bi-weekly - a local magazine which focused on indie and underground music. He was 14. 'I had a date one day, but my friend didn't show up, so I bought a copy of the magazine and spent the rest of the day reading it in a restaurant,' recalls the amiable 30-year-old who founded MCB eight years ago. 'I thought I had already listened to loads of songs, but I found that I didn't know most of the CDs featured in the magazine,' he says. 'The words and terms used - which I had never heard of before - grabbed my attention.' So he jumped into alternative music, buying a record a week, which he could not really afford. 'I hung around stores and searched for all sorts of records. I listened to different types of music and, of course, I sometimes hit a snag when I found that the record was not at all what I expected,' he says, adding his choice of music was deeply influenced by music critiques. This musical adventure went on for about six months, when Yuen felt a need to share his feelings about music with others. But there was no one to talk to. 'None of my classmates or friends listened to that kind of music,' he says. Feeling alienated, he picked up a pen and wrote about his passion for alternative music. In the summer of 1986, he had two articles published in the magazine Music Bus, and he has not stopped writing since. After graduating from Form Five, Yuen decided to seek work instead of continuing his education. 'I didn't like studying and I hated staying in school,' he says. 'And because I wanted to buy many, many records, I wanted to get a job so I could buy as many as I liked.' Before founding MCB, he got a job with a music magazine, worked for a record company, and then was a guest DJ at a radio station and a big record store. Yuen also formed two bands, Candy & The Current Bun and Arnold Layne in 1992, and released music as The Current Bun, like in the recent MCB's anniversary compilation - MCB 200. This album also features indie musicians such as The Pancakes, Alok, Square Fruit and Primary Shapes. Although he enjoys making music, writing is what he really loves. Listening and writing about music is his job and he says he still likes discovering alternative and new sounds. But he laments: 'There are too many CDs to listen to and never enough time.'