REVIEW: JINJER – “Micro” [EP]
Ukrainian metal act Jinjer has been making waves in the metal scene in recent times ever since they gained prominence by winning the Best Ukrainian Metal act award of 2013 and the award-winning music video of, I Speak Astonomy from 2016’s King of Everything. Fronted by vocalist Tatiana Shmailyuk along with guitarist Roman Ibramkhalilov, bassist Eugene Abdiukhanov and Vladislav Ulasevich behind the kit this group started out as a metalcore act and gained a reputation for making some great music infused with progressive and groovy elements producing a unique sound with 2014’s Cloud Factory. However, the departure Dmitriy Oksen resulted in a tilt in musical influences, thus leading its successor album to a lukewarm reception. Earlier in the year the band revealed that they were working on new material and we’re here to talk about the new Extended Play titled ‘Micro’.
I am all for artwork, but had a tough time interpreting what this one represents. However, going by what I hear I can tell you that this EP is fuelled with a combination of rage and emotion, discussing various topics ranging from evolution to some gritty truths in the fabric of mankind. ‘Ape’ talks of evolution in perspective of what makes mankind god’s mistake, and makes for interesting music that stems from the fusion of groove and progressive elements together with an impressive marriage between rhythm guitar and drums. ‘Dreadful Moments’ discusses child abuse and neglect in a melody that is stunningly so good to listen to, it makes you uncomfortable for enjoying it considering how dark the subject is.
Tatiana’s got some impressive pipes and adds a lot of emotion to this track with both clean and scream vocals thus bringing out the pain of this ghastly issue. ‘Teacher, Teacher’ sounds like a hybrid of djent and nu metal with its breakdowns and rap style verses. Depending on how you perceive it, it’s either a mockery of the education system or an all-out assault against the prejudice of the system we call society and by the time you’re done listening, part of you might just agree with it. ‘Perennial’ starts off frantic but progress’ to become the most melodic track among the lot. It has a frosty touch to it and some great bass licks in the third quarter onwards. Things come to close with the self-titled and final track ‘Micro’. A short and sweet instrumental with some amazing guitar playing and personally my favourite instrumental of the year.
The production quality is top notch (got to love the snare’s sound!) and the EP comes out on the 11th of January 2019. But with two out of five songs already out on YouTube if you’re wondering whether is worth actually buying this EP? I would say go for it! At 22 minutes this album is of decent length and musically sits somewhere between Cloud Factory and King of Everything. It tips toward the melodic side without losing its raw edge and aggression and is well structured when compared to their last full-length album. In terms of composition and content this is lyrically a very deep record and musically I pleasantly enjoy the uniqueness of their sound rather than trying to classify it, and I reckon that’s the best way to go about it.
‘Micro’ is evidence that Jinjer’s music is not a flash in the pan. It’s the by-product of a solid effort by talented musicians who judiciously use their skills to produce a unique record and perhaps even forge the sound of next generation metal music.