Depending on how you look at JINA0KING‘s VOLUME SPACE + BIRD, whether a two-part album or an EP with a secondary work-in-progress addition, you get a look into the mind of an artist. I didn’t know JINA0KING was one half of Billy Carter until recently but this work is very unique and personal. Side a is “improvisation sound” with side B described as “folk songs.”

jina0king jina kim volume space + bird

The track order starts with side B’s, “How was your day,” definitely feels like a top of mind wander. Its slow tempo is moving through the verse complimented with simple vocals. The slow movement draws you in as you wonder where the song is heading. The sparse recording is accented by the general area audio recording. I don’t know if it’s an area mic or a mic with a plugged in acoustic guitar. But it really doesn’t matter because the song is beautiful in its simplicity.

“You&7 fenestration” is a little more complex with the addition of bells and a afuche/cabasa noise but the guitar takes the main melody. It’s kind of a lonely song feeling like you’re watching a field that leads to the oceanside. “Fatty cat” adds a repeating synth sequence to the acoustic guitar and JINA0KING’s vocals. I think the main highlight for all these songs is the precision of the guitar that builds the foundation of every track. It’s low key and unpolished audio, but the finesse of the talent comes through. I think most people will enjoy side B a lot because of how organic and raw everything sounds.

Side a will be a little more difficult for people. The 10 takes of “The Tiny Isle of Nobody 작은섬 무인도 + I Want To Be In Your Time & Space” are all interesting because they are the same song in foundation, but different in presentation. The fact that it goes from take 1 to take 20 means there was a lot of exploration into this track. Fans of experimental or noise and tonal music will likely find a lot to digest when listening throughout all the takes.

Each one varies from 18 to 20 minutes giving you a lot of audio. It’s hard to know which one might be the favorite because the smaller elements and accents that come through give each version a new feeling. Sometimes listening to them in the background, they actually sound different.

JINA0KING presents two sides on this release. One of a more familiar acoustic folk style, recorded with a minimal setup and presentation and the other is a dense and exploratory journey into the depths of what a song can be and how much work it takes to polish and complete. I don’t know if “The Tiny Isle of Nobody 작은섬 무인도 + I Want To Be In Your Time & Space” has a final version, but I think listeners can choose their favorite among these versions. I hope she continues to create more music in either style because it sounds like there’s a lot lying under the surface of her artistic mind.

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Korean Indie owner and Editor at Large. Constantly looking for new music and working on library parity on Spotify and YouTube Music.