Linus’ Blanket is one of the most interesting bands in the Korean indie scene because of their indie-jazz pop fusion. There are many bands that have some jazz elements to their sound, but Linus’ Blanket goes all out. The Magic Moments EP reinforces Linus’ Blanket’s unique spot in Korean indie.
With every release, Linus’ Blanket has become jazzier and jazzier, eschewing the more traditional indie style that was present on early releases such as Semester and Labor in Vain. Since 2011’s Show Me Love, Linus’ Blanket has become the solo effort of the singer, YeonGene. This may explain why Magic Moments is full-on jazz music. It is wonderful and whimsical and a pleasant change of pace from what listener’s may be used to hearing in Korean indie music. YeonGene has a charming personality, and there’s an endearing quality to her voice that is hard to pin down except to say that it has an eternal child-like feel to it.
Perhaps due to the loss of the band’s other members, the EP is packed with guest singers who feature on five of the six songs. They compliment YeonGene well, giving her another voice to play off of. It works great on the single, “Love Me”, where her spright vocals spar against 김태춘’s flatter voice. It works so well because his voice anchors hers. However, the best features come from 주윤하 on the quiet love ballad “To You” and 빌리어코스티 on the opener “Summer Night Magic” where the voices intertwine romantically.
Surprisingly, the centerpiece of the album though is the only one entirely without jazz influence. “어느새” is a slow burning seven minute ballad that proves that Linus’ Blanket is anything but a gimmick. Jazz pop may be YeonGene’s forte and personal love, but “어느새” takes all of that away and still manages to take your breath away. Five minutes in, when the piano takes the stage and then melds with the guitar, it is something truly spectacular. It is the opposite of Show Me Love’s stand-out indie pop track “Music Takes Us to the Universe”, yet plays with the same joie de vivre and wide-eyed love of everything.
YeonGene is very talented — and even as the sole member of Linus’ Blanket, she brings limitless charm and an insatiable energy. Magic Moments is so good because it commits to exactly what Linus’ Blanket loves to do and what it does best.