It’s clear, when looking at Jlin’s body of work, and her recent activities, that she's the definition of what a creative composer looks and sounds like in 2023. She’s able to work across borders in many different environments and situations. Her work, and sound, is fluid and not locked into genre. The only apt tag for her now is ‘composer.’ Let’s be clear - she’s not EDM, IDM, electronic, footwork or post-footwork. She’s simply Jlin.
In thinking about this new release we have to draw attention to her collaboration with Chicago’s Third Coast Percussion - ‘Perspective’ - since it’s also the title of this six-track mini-album. And of course, we’d be remit if we didn’t point out that Third Coast Percussion’s acoustic version of ‘Perspective’ saw Jlin shortlisted as a finalist for The 2023 Pulitzer Prize in Music! Jlin notes how “Working with T.C.P. was a rewarding experience. I love their constant driving ambition. When I would go to their studio we would experiment as much as we could, and that to me is the beauty of composing.” Note that the CD version of ‘Perspective’ adds the four tracks from her ‘Embryo’ EP, apt since ‘Embryo’ itself was the 7th Perspective piece.
To shift perspective slightly, Jlin notes that collaborating with dance companies, especially those of Wayne McGregor and Kyle Abraham “has seen a significant evolution in my work.” She adds, “Working with Kyle and AIM, I felt the need to incorporate more organic percussion and drums. The raw, visceral nature of Kyle's choreography demanded a more tactile, grounded sound. I believe that music and dance are deeply interconnected, and the rhythm and physicality of organic percussion needs to mirror the dancers' movements whether it is conceptually or abstract.”
The organic aspect of her composition ‘Dissonance,’ a key cut on her new mini-album sounds like it might have been written for Kyle and AIM but, like the entire release, it was in fact written for Third Coast Percussion. With the organic drums in the track being a part of what Jlin calls her “from scratch” foundation. For many ‘Dissonance’ will be a first glimpse at Jlin’s mastery of organic sounds. It’s a stunning work that showcases her distinct approach to organic percussion. Further audible evidence can also be heard all over her new mini-album. She continues to evolve her sound and her approaches to composition on a steady and constant basis.
Jlin’s new mini-album “Perspective” works as a catch-up for those wanting new music from her, and wanting to hear how her sound is evolving. Tune in. There’s much more ahead.
3. Fourth Perspective