Our SXSW Coverage Special ends with Jambinai!

SXSW is just around the corner (March 7th to be exact) and we’ve got days of interviews lined up for you guys! We’re spotlighting some of the awesome Korean bands that are coming to the States to spread not just their own music, but the power of the Korean Rock scene as a whole! Enjoy the interviews, this next one being with Korean Post Rock band Jambinai. I’ve never heard a fusion of traditional and contemporary like this before. If you’ve been reading all the interviews so far you probably remember me saying how Post Rock is one of my favorite genres of Rock music, and Jambinai prove why. It’s that heavy emotion. The part of your soul that can only be reached through a nonverbal language. It’s really no surprise that Jambinai have traveled, and continue to travel, around the world to perform. Their music is universal, transcending all language barriers.

JambinaiTime of Extinction 


(All answers provided by guitarist and piri player Ilwoo Lee)

Congrats on your tour and playing SXSW! Please introduce yourselves

Thank you! We’re Jambinai from Seoul, Korea. Our band plays post-rock music with traditional Korean instruments. Last year we won “Best Crossover Album” at the Korean Music Awards. We have gigged overseas in Finland, Wales, Norway, and Brazil in the past, and we’re really looking forward to making our American live debut at SXSW this week!

Why are you excited to be playing at SXSW 2014? How do you plan to make the most of this great opportunity?

The music market in the US is really big, so we’re excited about being able to share our music there. We plan to make the most of our time at SXSW by playing our best and trying to meet lots of other bands, music fans, and music industry staff. We’d love to tour more in the US, so I think SXSW is a really good way to introduce Jambinai to American people.

Where does Jambinai get their musical inspiration?

I get a lot of my musical inspiration from other bands. I listen to different kinds of music and often think about why bands play certain things the way they do.

I know it can be hard for Korean bands to get the opportunity to perform in America. What advice would you give to a band wanting to tour the States?

This is our first time touring in the States, so I’m not sure what advice I can share with other people. We were lucky in that we were invited to play at SXSW and that the Korean company Naver was interested in sponsoring us and helping to promote our tour. We’re really grateful to both SXSW and Naver.

It’s hard for Korean musicians to get notoriety if they don’t have a mainstream Kpop sound. What was it that made people start to notice Jambinai as a band, and when did you all begin to really get popular?

Jambinai’s music is unique because we mix Korean traditional music with lots of other sounds to create something that is experimental and new. I think because no one else in Korea is making music like this, it has helped people to notice us.

Besides performing and making new fans, are there any other things you’re looking forward to doing while in the States? Any places you guys wanna see or foods you wanna eat?

We’re only staying in the US for a week, so our schedule is kind of tight on this trip. But if we have time, we want to watch some of the other bands at the festival perform. And I want to try lots of different kinds of American beer as well! I have cousins that live in Dallas and Austin, so I want to make time to meet with them too.

What are some of Jambinai’s future plans? Anything big in the works?

We’re going to release our sophomore album in April, and in April we’ll also play at China’s Sound of the Xity festival and go to Amsterdam to perform at the PMPS event as part of the CinemAsia Festival. We’ll be back in the US in June to play at California’s Sierra Nevada World Music Festival. This summer we’ll also be appearing at music festivals throughout Europe including Denmark’s Roskilde Festival and Slovakia’s Festival Pohoda. This year is going to be really great for our band!

I hope you all have a sick time! Anything special you want to say to fans before the tour starts?

We hope we can meet you on this tour or during a future tour. Thank you for supporting Jambinai and listening to our music.

Jambinai’s last show date of their U.S. tour is March 16 San Antonio, TX @ Limelight! If you can, try to make it out! 

Korean Underground

Jambinai– 나무의 대화 2

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