Events / Jambinai at Gulbenkian

University of Kent
Kent , CT2 7NB

Tickets: £5-£12
Doors: 6:30 pm
Call: 01227 769075

Book online →

Friday 4th October

Creating some of the most innovative sounds in East Asia’s underground scene, Jambinai are an award-winning post-rock/world music hybrid act that was formed in Seoul, South Korea in 2009 by guitarist and piri (oboe) player Ilwoo Lee, haegum (a fiddle-like instrument) player Bomi Kim, and geomungo (zither) player Eun Young Sim.

Ilwoo, Bomi, and Eun Young became acquainted while studying at the Korea National University of Arts. After graduating, they ran into each other after a mutual friend’s concert. They began chatting about Korean traditional music and how they felt it needed to find a new way to present itself. That chance encounter led to the birth of Jambinai.

Ushering Korean traditional music into the 21st century, Jambinai’s stunning sonic compositions mix mesmerizing sounds from the past with elements of folk, metal, and electronic music. In September 2010, Jambinai issued its first recording, an eponymous three-song EP, through the highly-respected Korean hardcore label GMC Records. In the summer of 2011, the band was invited to play at the Incheon Pentaport Rock Festival, one of South Korea’s largest music festivals. Jambinai issued their debut full-length album, Différance, in February 2012. Challenging and compelling, the highly-acclaimed cd won “Best Crossover Album” at the 2013 Korean Music Awards and also earned Jambinai a nomination for “Best Jazz & Crossover Performance” at the ceremony as well.

Looking to build upon their success at home, 2013 saw Jambinai making their first strides abroad. The group has been wowing audiences at a number of international festivals since then including SXSW (US), Roskilde festival (DK), Exit festival (SR), Primavera (ES), Glastonbury (UK), The Great Escape (UK) and Trans Musicales (FR). Live the band was joined by drummer Jae Hyuk Choi and bassplayer Byeongkoo Yu who are now permanent band members of the group. Their 2nd album A Hermitage was released by Bella Union on June 17th 2016 and received great reviews all around, 4* in Q and Uncut and rising stars in Mojo. With the success of “a Hermitage” in mind, Bella Union has release their debut album “Différance” on February 24, 2017. This album was released in Korea only and sold by the band at shows but now will get the proper release it deserves. Music this rousing and beautiful, rising and subsiding in epic fashion, will doubtless trigger a flood of images, might recall an abyss, or the apocalypse, but Jambinai also represent a positive force, resisting the old ways and reinventing the future.

This came into the international spotlight when they were among the chosen artists to participate in the closing ceremony of the Olympic winter games in PyeongChang. Their performance of the song “Time for Extinction” made a lasting impact among the hundreds of millions of viewers of the event. Their new album “Onda” will be released on Bella Union on June 7th 2019. The first single Square Wave is available now as stream on Youtube.

"Thrilling, unexpected and perfectly controlled". The Guardian. 

"Atmospheric pieces with bursts of furious energy, with constant changes of mood and volume." The Guardian. 

"A Hermitage retains their dark mixture of beauty, whiplash-fast changes in volume and spellbinding intensity." MOJO. 

"A thumping second album which combines the headrush of Lightning Bolt or Boredoms with elements of traditional Korean music." Uncut. 

"Highly recommended for adventurous music listeners". Init Music

Artists involved