Jambinai Announce Apparition EP

JAMBINAI today announce the release of Apparition, a new 4-track EP, out 11th November via Bella Union and available to preorder here. To celebrate the announcement the band have shared an intense live performance video for “Once More From That Frozen Bottom”, the EP’s incendiary opening track, filmed last winter at the ARTE museum in Yeosu. Additionally, JAMBINAI have been announced as one of the headline acts at the Portals Festival at EartH in Hackney on 27th May 2023.

For JAMBINAI, South Korea’s maestros of intense folk-infused post-rock, it has been the best of times and the worst of times since the release of their third album ONDA in 2019. 

In February 2020, the quintet won Best Rock Album for ONDA and Best Rock Song for the title track at South Korea’s Music Awards, but then came the pandemic. The quintet’s brilliant new four-track EP Apparition captures the depth and range of emotions that JAMBINAI have felt these last few years, from anxious lockdowns and thwarted plans to the thrill of renewed creativity, hunger and hope. 

As co-founder and band spokesman Lee Il-woo recalls, “After ONDA we saw 2020 as a new opportunity to work on a bigger stage. I personally wanted to release a new album and tour to exhaust the energy of ONDAand find new inspiration, but it didn’t work out that way. We didn’t find enough energy to make a full album yet, so for now we are releasing four songs.”

The title Apparition stems from Lee’s perception of the band he has steered since 2011. “JAMBINAI have been making intense music for an intense group of devotees in invisible places,” he says. “Overall, I have tried to express a message of comfort to everyone living in a difficult time due to the pandemic and what’s going on in the world.”

Lee’s projection of comfort starkly contrasts with the energy force that carries it: a unique combination of primary rock colour (electric guitar, bass, drums) and Korean folk instruments: the piri (bamboo oboe), the yanggeum (hammered dulcimer), geomungo (zither) and saenghwang (reed mouth organ). 

Apparition’s four song titles alone nail the otherworldly sensations that define the JAMBINAI experience. Lead track ‘Once More From That Frozen Bottom’ instantly conjures up a landscape that feels volcanic as well as icy. At other times, JAMBINAI  employ the slow burn, establishing a mood of serenity before the volume blasts upward and the atmosphere turns supremely dark, such as ‘Until My Wings Turn To Ashes’ and a live version of ‘Candlelight In Colossal Darkness’ which closes the EP with a sense of reflection and acceptance.

That leaves ‘From The Place Been Erased’, featuring the guest vocals of K Pop legend swja (also known as sunwoojunga, well known for working with 2NE1, Black Pink, and BTS). “I thought swja’s voice would go well with our music,” says Lee, “so I asked her for help. I am honoured that she willingly participated. Despite our heavy and strong sound, she understood its inner emotions.”

Apparition proves that JAMBINAI are not just alive and kicking, but more energised than ever, making up for lost time and momentum. Playing the 2018 Winter Olympic Games closing ceremony in their home city of Seoul had set up the forward momentum that produced ONDA. The South Korean awards similarly upped the ante for the follow-up. Though JAMBINAI also won the Asia category at global music bible Songlines’ annual awards at the end of 2020, only the thrill and thrust of new music and performance would truly count. First, money reserved for airfares for a cancelled tour in 2020 was used to film online performances for the digital TV channel Audiotree. Then in the spring of 2021, JAMBINAI played at the ‘virtual’ SXSW festival, from which the performance video for the aptly named ‘Time Of Extinction’ was taken, followed by a show for the Tiny Desk (home) Concert series. 

By the end of 2021, JAMBINAI were finally recording what became Apparition, but they didn’t stop there. Through April 2022, the band released four acoustic performances. There was even a collaboration with Soojung Baek’s boutique Craft Codes, combining two of her scents, “that seemed to match our music the best,” says Lee.

The urge to create has only driven JAMBINA’s members further on. In September, Lee will be working as a concert master of the traditional Gyeonggi Sinawi Orchestra for performances in Poland, Hungary, Austria, Slovenia and the Czech Republic then collaborating with hardcore rock trio PAKK at London’s annual K-Music Festival in October. He also wrote the music for the first series of the BBC’s Korean-set crime podcast “The Lazarus Heist”. 

JAMBINAI other two co-founders have been busy too. Kim Bomi and Sim Eunyong co-wrote the music for a modern art piece in South Korea’s National Museum of Contemporary and Modern Arts; having released a solo album at the end of 2019, Sim wrote and performed the music for a piece by choreographer Jinyeob Cha in June 2022. Kim also currently DJs for a Korean traditional music radio broadcast.

The three members, with JAMBINAI drummer Jaehyuk Choi and bassist B.K Yu, will join forces for a tour starting in May 2023, and “when there’s an empty space, I want to make a new album,” Lee confirms. Not being able to celebrate the band’s tenth anniversary in 2021, “was a very disappointing moment,” he says. “But it’s okay. We will release more albums and become a better band until the 20th anniversary show.”

Apparition tracklist below…

1. Once More From That Frozen Bottom

2. From The Place Been Erased (featuring swja)

3. Until My Wings Turn To Ashes

4. Candlelight In Colossal Darkness

A.A. Williams Shares “Golden”

With her new album As The Moon Rests due out 7th October via Bella Union, and having previously shared a video for lead track ‘Evaporate’, today A.A. Williams unveils new single “Golden”. Commenting on the track Williams says: “It is sometimes possible to find ourselves in a situation unable to be objective, unable to see one’s part in the greater picture. Sometimes we are even the root of a problem we didn’t even realise was occurring. Golden speaks of the push and pull between enjoying being in a loving situation, yet simultaneously, unwittingly, ruining it.”

“Traditionally, your second album is the worry; where there’s the weight of expectation,” A.A. Williams contends. “But I must create music I like myself, and I’ve had more time on this record; I’ve felt more confidence and conviction. As The Moon Rests is both heavier and softer, there’s more texture and weight, and a string ensemble. It’s Forever Blue times ten!”

Released in July 2020, Forever Blue was the London-based singer-songwriter’s album debut, a brilliantly dramatic, unique and intimate walk on the dark side that fused bold and smouldering hues of post-rock and post-classical. By turns, it was glacial and volcanic, blissful and violent, through moments of disarming quiet and explosive volume, equally appealing to alt-rock and metal camps.

“The shifts between moments of high drama and quiet tension point to her kinship with Chelsea Wolfe and PJ Harvey,” stated Uncut. “Stirring and evocative… The chances of a more heartrending and fully formed debut emerging this year are practically zero,” reckoned Metal Hammer.

As Williams contends, As The Moon Rests amplifies the scale of her ambitions, crystalised by ‘Evaporate’, the first track released from the sessions. It comes with a video that embodies the thrilling tensions of Williams’ world, where emotions walk a fine line between control and chaos. Likewise, the impact of William’s deep-trawling voice and lyrics that ask all the right existential questions throughout As The Moon Rests: who am I? What can I change? What can’t I change?

Forever Blue had already set in motion Williams’ quest for self-improvement, but the pandemic presented more challenges. As Forever Blue was about to be released, she started posting solo videos – cover versions suggested by her fans, such as Radiohead’s ‘Creep’, Nick Cave’s ‘Into Your Arms’ and Deftones’ ‘Be Quiet and Drive’, alchemised to fit her own crepuscular sound and vision. Songs From Isolation, as she called it, “was a positive experience to focus on through the overwhelming reports of bad news. And I could have a dialogue with my listeners.”

Songs From Isolation subsequently turned into a nine-track album of covers, a definite and heartaching document of solitude and fortitude. Next came arco, a re-imagining of Williams’ debut (self-titled) EP for just voice and strings. She’d played the string parts (as well as guitar and piano) on Forever Blue, but here she wrote the arrangements for a ten-piece ensemble, transposing the rhythm and low end of a rock band into sumptuous and elegant orchestrations.

Forever Blue had already set in motion Williams’ quest for self-improvement, but the pandemic presented more challenges. As Forever Blue was about to be released, she started posting solo videos – cover versions suggested by her fans, such as Radiohead’s ‘Creep’, Nick Cave’s ‘Into Your Arms’ and Deftones’ ‘Be Quiet and Drive’, alchemised to fit her own crepuscular sound and vision. Songs From Isolation, as she called it, “was a positive experience to focus on through the overwhelming reports of bad news. And I could have a dialogue with my listeners.”

Songs From Isolation subsequently turned into a nine-track album of covers, a definite and heartaching document of solitude and fortitude. Next came arco, a re-imagining of Williams’ debut (self-titled) EP for just voice and strings. She’d played the string parts (as well as guitar and piano) on Forever Blue, but here she wrote the arrangements for a ten-piece ensemble, transposing the rhythm and low end of a rock band into sumptuous and elegant orchestrations.

The string ensemble returns for As The Moon Rests, bolstering the album’s cinematic dimensions and underlining the palpable drama of Williams’ quest to forge a more liberating path. The album’s opening track ‘Hollow Heart’ sets out the emotional terrain: “Give me time and I will learn / that I am only human,” she sings before the instruments begin their slow climb to boiling point. Williams’ voluminous guitar and keyboards are embellished by co-producer (and husband) Thomas Williams’ bass guitar, Geoff Holroyde’s drums and engineer / mixer Adrian Hall at his London studio Clever Pup (as opposed to the Williams’ two-bedroom flat for Forever Blue). “We had better equipment, and more experience at hand,” says Williams. When they were finished, As The Moon Rests clocked in at a mighty 62 minutes. “I was expecting to take a few recordings away after we’d finished, but the consensus was that everything was good, and worked as a collection.”

The album takes its title from the closing track. “For me, ‘As The Moon Rests’ jumped out as evoking a change in direction in the lyrics,” she explains. “It’s a love song, not necessarily romantic, but between two people with an unwavering bond. It seemed poignant and prominent enough to work as the title.”

That unwavering bond could equally exist between two conflicting parts of the self. “Most of Forever Blue’s text was quite insular,” she recalls. “I was trying to understand myself, trying to cure, or eradicate, parts of myself. But I realised that if you remove things; you might remove parts of your personality too. You just need to learn how to manage things, to be kinder to yourself. It’s all a journey, a progression.”

Williams would rather not specify any incidents, triggers or memories behind each individual song. “It’s all part of an overriding arc,” she says. “With hindsight, some songs I figure things out, others I disappear into a hole. For example, in ‘Evaporate’, I’m trying to keep a lid on fizzy complicated thoughts, which just explode. Other times, I’m more relaxed. Mostly, writing is more retrospective, not about the here and now. The lyrics are the place where I figure things out.”

Now Williams and her live band – Thomas Williams, Wayne Proctor and multi-instrumentalist Matthew de Burgh Daly – get to figure out a proper headline tour in support of an album, since lockdown meant that their first headline show on London’s South Bank in early 2020 became her last for well over a year, until a short headline tour in Autumn 2021 that at least gave them the chance to commune with fans and feel the white heat and spark of performance. In August of this year, they’re supporting Japanese post-rockers MONO, Williams’ collaborators for the 10” vinyl single ‘Exit in Darkness’; in September, to launch As the Moon Rests, comes their biggest headline show yet at London’s Queen Elizabeth Hall. Following that, Williams will undertake her first comprehensive headline tour: a 6-week trek across the UK and Europe, taking in 34 shows over 12 countries. Williams’ journey may have been held up by events, but in all other aspects, everything that culminates in As The Moon Rests is incontrovertible proof that it continues to build and thrive.

Thursday 18th August – Bristol – Arctangent Festival

Sunday 21st August – Oslo – Kulturkirken Jakob

Monday 22nd August – Stockholm – Sodra Teatern

Tuesday 23rd August – Copenhagen – Pumpehuset

Wednesday 24th August – Hamburg – Uebel & Gefahrlich

Thursday 25th August – Berlin – Hole44

Friday 26th August – Koln – Luxor

Sunday 28th August – Antwerp – Kavka Zappa

Wednesday 31st August – Zurich – Mascotte

Thursday 1st September – Paris – Le Trabendo

Saturday 3rd September – Barcelona – Apolo 2

Sunday 4th September – Murcia – Garage Beat Club

Monday 5th September – Seville – Sala Custom

Tuesday 6th September – Porto – Hard Club

Wednesday 7th September – Lisbon – RCA Club

Thursday 8th September – Madrid – Mon Madrid

Friday 9th September – Biarritz – Atabal

Sunday 11th September – Bensancon – L’antonnoir

Monday 12th September – Lille – Aeronef

Saturday 19th November – Dunkerque – Les 4Ecluses

Saturday 17th September – London – Queen Elizabeth Hall

Sunday 13th November – Leeds – Brudenell Social Club

Monday 14th November – Milton Keynes – Craufurd Arms

Tuesday 15th November – Birmingham – Hare & Hounds

Wednesday 16th November – Cardiff – Clwb Ifor Bach

Thursday 17th November – Falmouth – The Cornish Bank

Friday 18th November – Bristol – Thekla

Saturday 19th November – Dunkerque – Les 4 Ecluses

Sunday 20th November – Savigny -le-temple – L’Empreinte

Tuesday 22nd November – Nantes – Le Ferrailleur

Wednesday 23rd November – Rouen – Le 106

Thursday 24th November – Lyon – Hard Rock Café

Friday 25th November – Metz – L’Aerogare Station Lothaire

Saturday 26th November – Strasbourg – Artefact La Laiterie

Sunday 27th November – Duffel – Cinema Plaza

Monday 28th November – Tilburg – Cultuurfabriek Hall Of Fame

Wednesday 30th November – Hamburg – Hafenklang

Thursday 1st December – Copenhagen – Vega

Friday 2nd December – Aalborg – 1000Fryd

Sunday 4th December – Bergen – Landmark

Monday 5th December – Oslo – Bla

Tuesday 6th December – Stockholm – Hus 7

Thursday 8th December – Helsinki – Kuudes Linja

Saturday 10th December – Gdansk – Drizzly Grizzly

Sunday 11th December – Warsaw – Klub Hydrozagadka

Monday 12th December – Krakow – Hol

Tuesday 13th December – Wroclaw – Akademia Club

Wednesday 14th December – Berlin – Urban Spree

Friday 16th December – Milan – Bloom

Saturday 17th December – Lucernce – Sedel

Sunday 18th December – Karlsruhe – Stadmitte

Monday 19th December – Frankfurt – Brotfabrik

Tuesday 20th December – Cologne – Buhmann & Sohn

Wednesday 21st December – Haarlem – Patronaat

Father John Misty Premieres “Buddy’s Rendezvous” Video

Father John Misty was part of history in April when his hugely acclaimed new album Chloë and The Next 20th Century entered the UK album chart at Number 2, with Wet Leg at number 1 and Jack White at number 3, the first time in more than a decade that independent artists have taken the top three positions! Today, Father John Misty is sharing the official video for “Buddy’s Rendezvous”, directed by filmmaker and photographer Emma Elizabeth Tillman (The History of Caves; The Wheel), and is a highlight from the album.

Emma says of the video: “‘Buddy’s Rendezvous’ is a world unto itself. It is a place out of time. My dream for the video is that it would surrender itself to the power of the song. An unnamed man (played by Craig Stark), fresh out of jail and down on his luck makes his way across the fractured landscape of Los Angeles to meet his daughter (played by Arrow DeWilde). All the while he is beset by memories of a more innocent time. Despite her hesitance, his daughter and her boyfriend (played by Gilbert Trejo) agree to meet her father and find moments of sadness and sparks of tenderness in the connection made. Although the video and the song can be considered love letters to Los Angeles, the themes are universal. Disappointments, regrets, forgiveness, tenderness, perseverance, and love. The incredible performances by Arrow, Craig, Gilbert, and David Haley all coalesce to bring this vision to life. Cinematography by James Wall on 16mm evokes the down and out feeling of LA, merging past and present. This video could not have been accomplished without the talent of producer Bria Little and creative director and editor Jonathan King.”

Also out today is Lana Del Rey’s gorgeous cover of “Buddy’s Rendezvous,” available now on all DSPs. Her interpretation of the song was previously only available as a 7” single included with the limited edition box set of Chloë and The Next 20th Century. 

Chloë and The Next 20th Century and its singles are earning “Best Albums” and “Songs of 2022 (So Far)” placement from the likes of The Guardian, StereogumConsequenceUproxx and more. 

Father John Misty’s previously announced international headlining tour schedule in support of Chloë and The Next 20th Century begins June 26th and runs through to March 17th, 2023.

Helen Ganya Announces Heart To Heart Mirage EP

Helen Ganya, who previously recorded under the name Dog In The Snow, has today announced news of a new 4-track EP, Heart to Heart Mirage, out 13th May via Bella Union. Of the EP Helen says: “Heart to Heart Mirage is a collection of four songs written to accompany and precede the next album, crafted around similar imagery and themes but standing alone as an independent collection. The title comes from a lyric in the song ‘Haze/revolution’ which lent itself well thematically.”

To coincide with the announcement Helen has shared a lyric video for the EP’s opening track, “Beautiful Country” of which she says: “Beautiful Country is a little tongue-in-cheek heartbreak on the illusion of meritocracy. It was a joy to write a sax line for this which was then re-interpreted with wondrous flair from fellow Brit-Thai musician Rittipo.”

Born to a Thai mother and Scottish father, Helen Ganya spent her formative years in Singapore before returning to the UK, settling in Brighton. As a teenager, learning guitar and discovering GarageBand simultaneously became a gateway into songwriting. She absorbed influences such as Sufjan Stevens, Scott Walker, David Lynch, Clint Mansell and Brian Eno: brooding, immersive and filmic universes that helped transcend her ongoing sense of fragmented identity, of being mixed race.

Since moving to Brighton, Helen has been a session player for bands such as Fear Of Men as well as Lost Horizons – the project of Bella Union’s label boss Simon Raymonde. After a short-run debut record, she signed to Bella Union and released her first album proper, Vanishing Lands, a haunting and luminous collection of songs covering themes of environmental destruction, lifted by euphoric melodies and absorbing lyrics.

In a rave review MOJO said this of the album: “Echoing the rich gothic drama of 80’s post-punk, the aerial swirl of 90s dream-pop and Kate Bush, Vanishing Lands unfolds in a dreamlike manner.” It was also specially selected by Tim Burgess for one of his Listening Parties during the height of lockdown.

Since the pandemic, Helen felt a sense of panic and urgency surrounding anti-Asian hate that re-surfaced and amplified in western societies due to Covid. This partly inspired the name change from Dog In The Snow to Helen Ganya to reflect the importance of visibility “particularly for those that move in predominantly white spaces”. She now also runs a regular radio show on Brighton’s Slack City radio called Mixed Tapes which showcases music from musicians of colour in the independent music world as well as interviews with POCs in different parts of the music industry. She has since returned to school and is currently finishing a Master of Science in Climate Change, a subject matter that has been a recurring theme in much of her music.

Heart to Heart Mirage tracklist:

1. Beautiful Country

2. Haze/Revolution

3. Patient Zero

4. Pleasure Dome

Father John Misty shares “Goodbye Mr. Blue”

Father John Misty’s “Goodbye Mr. Blue” is the bittersweet and tender new single from Chloë and the Next 20th Century, his forthcoming album out 8th April via Bella Union in the UK/Europe and worldwide from Sub Pop. Later this evening, Father John Misty and his band will make their return to late night TV with a performance of the song on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.

Father John Misty recently performed a sold-out show at Disney Hall in Los Angeles with the LA Philharmonic which Variety described as: “Of all the pop-rock/symphonic collaborations that the LA Phil and Hollywood Bowl Orchestra have specialized in over the last few years — and there have been some wonderful ones —  this felt like the most natural and probably the best.”

The next symphony performance for 2022 — April 7th in London at the Barbican with Britten Sinfonia conducted by Jules Buckley — is sold out.

Father John Misty will celebrate the release week of Chloë and The Next 20th Century with a number of intimate UK out-store performances which include Crash Records in Leeds (April 4th), Rough Trade East (April 9th), and Rough Trade Bristol (April 11th). On release day Father John Misty will be celebrating the album’s release with two performances presented by Banquet Records in Kingston. Tickets for these shows go on sale Friday 11th March at 9am.

Chloë and the Next 20th Century was written and recorded August through December 2020 and features arrangements by Drew Erickson. The album sees Tillman and producer/multi-instrumentalist Jonathan Wilson resume their long-time collaboration, as well as Dave Cerminara’s return as engineer and mixer. Basic tracks were recorded at Wilson’s Five Star Studios with strings, brass, and woodwinds recorded at United Recordings in a session featuring Dan Higgins and Wayne Bergeron, among others. Father John Misty has previously shared videos for the tracks “Funny Girl” and “Q4” from the album.

“Funny Girl”, Chloë and the Next 20th Century’s first single, saw praise upon its release in early January. Rolling Stone offers this: “A lovely, languid gem that shows Tillman quietly reintroducing himself  – with a little help from an orchestral arrangement that echoes old Hollywood.” The FADER says ‘Funny Girl’ is a “lush and romantic ballad…and shows that there’s much more to Josh Tillman.” CLASH calls it a “gorgeous new song” while The Times say that “the singer-songwriter is as disarmingly seductive as ever on a wry, string-soaked show tune.”

Warmduscher debut “Twitchin’ In The Kitchen” video

Warmduscher have today shared the suitably gonzo video for Twitchin’ In The Kitchenthe latest track to be taken from their forthcoming album, At The Hot Spot, their first for Bella Union, which is released on Friday April 1st 2022. The vinyl edition of the album will follow on July 1st 2022.

The band have previously shared Wild Flowers and Fatso from the album, both of which were A-listed at 6Music. Talking about Twitchin’ In The Kitchen, Clams Baker of the band said:

“Electric transmissions from the kitchens of twitch! Busy signals, threats of bodily harm, the pan-fried doom of grandma’s palpitations, a k2 carpet ride you can’t hop off of. Pick it up Jan & Jimmy, you’re all alone!”

The video, shot in and around Brixton, was directed by Niall Trask of The Kill Shop who has also worked on videos for Fat White Family, Ride and Working Men’s Club.

Written over a period of over a year in lockdown, At the Hotspot, produced by Joe Goddard and Al Doyle of Hot Chip, takes the raucous energy Warmduscher solidified on their critically acclaimed 2019 release Tainted Lunch, and injects it with a slightly more polished, ‘80s funk sound, kind of like stumbling home to your squatted loft after a drunken night at the local disco. It’s crunchy on the outside, smooth on the inside, and might be the most immediately enjoyable music Warmduscher have ever graced us with.

“There was a lot of partying,” says Clams, laughing about the gestation of the album. “We were like, Aaarrggghh. We were just happy to be doing something and seeing each other. It was that weird energy, where you’re fed up and you’re kind of angry, but in a good way. We would spend like two nights a week writing, maybe once or twice a month, sometimes less.” This went on for about a year, with all the members bringing in their contributions, until it came time to record—which, in typical punk rock fashion, had its own set of obstacles to overcome.

The bulk of Warmduscher’s discography – the aforementioned Tainted Lunch, as well as 2018’s Whale City and 2016’s Khaki Tears – were produced by London stalwart Dan Carey, who was instrumental in helping the band hone their fuzzed out sound. Unfortunately, at the beginning of At the Hotspot’s recording process, Dan caught COVID, and the band found themselves having to leave their comfort zone and find a new producer fast. Luckily, they found two, under serendipitous circumstances.  “I was in the studio with Joe and Al of Hot Chip, doing an electronic project with Igor Cavallera of Sepultura and his wife, artist/musician Laima,” explains Clams. “When I got the message saying Dan couldn’t do the album, I was like, ‘Aw, fuck!’ Then Joe and Al were simply like, ‘We’ll do it!’ It was this really weird, happy accident.”

While At the Hotspot is still very much a Warmduscher album, with all its cracks and crevices oozing garage rock bravado, the production values buff out those jagged edges in a way only these two virtuoso producers could have pulled off. “We’re just really psyched to play this whole thing live now,” states Clams matter-of-factly. “And it’s a whole revamp—new label, new producers, new logo—new everything.”

The band also head out on the road in spring of this year on a run of UK and European dates, including some already sold out rearranged shows and their biggest London show to date at The Forum.