Wed. Nov 25th, 2020

REVIEW: Jinjer – Alive in Melbourne

Anno Domini 2020 will be remembered as the year that pressed pause on the live music scene. But before everything came to a halt, some bands had the opportunity to play a number of shows. Ukrainian metal sensation JINJER was one of them, as they were starting their Macro World Tour in support of their highly acclaimed album, “Macro,” released in October of last year. As such, on 5 March 2020, they played a headlining concert in Melbourne, Australia, which will be released as a live album on 20 November 2020 via Napalm Records under the fitting title “Alive in Melbourne.

Doing what it is they do best and proving that they are just as good on stage as they are in the studio (if not even better), JINJER delivered an electrifying performance that begs the question “why wasn’t this released as a proper DVD?” The fact that it was streamed on Knotfest’s website in early July as part of a weekly concert series is a possible answer. For those that did not catch the livestream, this live album offers a solid insight not just into what it is like at a JINJER concert, but also why they are such heavily praised musicians. With a clear audio sound, the technical side of the band is brought into focus, which is an important aspect as their music is complex, dynamic, and groovy. If not for the band-audience interaction and Tatiana Shmailyuk’s funny comments between the songs, you would think this is a studio recording, it’s that excellent.

The album opens with the crowd cheering and clapping, eagerly awaiting an evening in the company of JINJER, which now brings about a bittersweet feel, while the atmospheric intro (a variation of “lainnereP”) sets an ominous mood that goes hand-in-hand with the setlist. In between the newer hits taken from both the EP “Micro” and the full-length “Macro,” like ferocious “Teacher, Teacher!,” groove-laden “Ape,” or earworm “On the Top,” such classics as high-speed number “Sit Stay Roll Over,” and hardcore anthem “Who Is Gonna Be the One” were also performed to the delight of the audience. To create a more energetic set and to lower the tempo in key moments, JINJER also inserted more clean-singing oriented songs, like reggae-infused “Judgement (& Punishment),” beautiful “I Speak Astronomy,” and melodic “Perennial” in between the heavier cuts. Rounding up the live experience, fan-favorites “Pisces” and “Captain Clock” were played as an encore, with the audience joyfully singing along. Among the many highlights of the album, “Teacher, Teacher!,”  “Retrospection,” and “On the Top” stand out as the best snapshots of a JINJER live experience.  

As expected, Tatiana Shmailyuk’s vocals are exquisite across the board, ranging from soulful and delicate to menacing and brutal, and pieces like intricate “Home Back” or dark “Pit of Consciousness” showcase her skills and versatility perfectly. To me, the bass is one of the driving forces in JINJER’s music and Eugene Abdukhanov’s instrument is perfectly placed in the mix, adding gravity and groove to the music. That is not to say that the guitars and drums are of less importance, as guitarist Roman Ibramkhalilov and drummer Vladislav Ulasevich deliver high-octane performances on their own, making such monster tracks like technical delight “Noah” or “Sit Stay Roll Over” even more powerful and in-your-face.

As with any live album, the listeners get a raw and energetic presentation of a band’s live sound and “Alive in Melbourne” perfectly captures everything one could possibly expect from JINJER and more. The well-balanced blend of technical accuracy and a convincing live ambiance makes “Alive in Melbourne” the perfect calling card for the band that has taken the metal world by storm in recent years and is still on the rise while cementing their status as a creative and unique metal act.

Written by Andrea Crow

Tracklist

  1. Intro
  2. Teacher, Teacher!
  3. Sit Stay Roll Over
  4. Ape
  5. Judgement (& Punishment)
  6. I Speak Astronomy
  7. Who Is Gonna Be the One
  8. Noah
  9. Retrospection
  10. Perennial
  11. On The Top
  12. Pit of Consciousness
  13. Home Back
  14. Words of Wisdom
  15. Pisces
  16. Captain Clock
  17. Outro

Lineup

Tatiana Shmailyuk – vocals

Roman Ibramkhalilov – guitars

Eugene Abdukhanov – bass

Vladislav Ulasevich – drums 

Label

Napalm Records

Links

Website     |     Facebook     |     Instagram     |     Twitter   

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