The thing that sticks out with Gemi, which means ant in Korean, is that it’s the project of one person. According to Gemi’s Facebook page, Jae Hyeok Kwon was a one man band when making Above The Nest. He also describes Gemi as a rock and metal, but to me Gemi is more of a hardcore punk band. The six songs on the EP present a slate of styles, but I don’t think Gemi is a true metal band.
“The March Of The Ants” is an introduction song which leads into “Above The Nest.” This song is a hardcore punk song. It’s impressive that Jay Hyeok knows how to play so many instruments along with singing. “Above The Nest” might be a little bit by-the-numbers in composition, but the song definitely has a lot of energy. On “Deviation,” Gemi opt for a bit more glam metal. It reminds me of Victim Mentality and some pop metal from Japan. The song is a good switch from “Above The Nest” and includes a screaming breakdown.
Listening to the songs on Above The Nest, it becomes a little clear that the songs are fighting between traditional metal and hardcore music. Elements from both genres are present in most songs and they try to take prominence against each other. This battle doesn’t detract from the music at all and actually makes it more interesting. I think a big cause for the head butting is because all the music is composed by one person.
I think hardcore fans will enjoy Gemi more than metal fans. Between the two genres, hardcore makes a stronger appearance. The vocals have a bit of a metal tone, but are solid and fit the music well. Above The Nest might get missed by a lot of people because it’s the work of a single person, but the EP is well worth a listen.