Jizue
Novel


4.5
superb

Review

by Jacob R. STAFF
December 2nd, 2012 | 90 replies


Release Date: 2012 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Among 2012's finest.

"It’s visual music. We want the listeners to visually interpret what they hear."

Jizue strive to create musical portraits for their listeners. Through one song to the next, every twist and turn is written to evoke a certain mood, and a particular setting. The group's from Kyoto, one of Japan's most prominent cultural hubs, and the group are only part of the capital's jazz scene. Therefore, it would make sense that Jizue feel the need to assert themselves above their jazz-taught peers, and they accomplish this by making music that can be perceived through a variety of mediums. This isn't the most difficult task for Jizue, either, considering many aspects of Novel are emotionally-driven, top-tier additions to highly lauded genres.

Stylistically, Novel is an excursion through jazz and post-rock. The combination works well here, largely because the wide difference between the two styles leaves space for lots of variety. "Unnecessary pain" is a blast of proficient instrumentation, and it's the most immediate track here because of how full-frontal its approach is. Frenetic drums accompany hyper piano melodies, differing instruments utilized for something refreshing. "Furusato," on the other hand, is based more in emotion than instrumental prowess. The track makes every note meaningful; Jizue even lengthens them for as long as necessary.

After all, the patience required (which the listener learns to embrace) leaves time to contemplate. "Furusato" concocts atmospheres delicate as butterfly wings, reverb cloaking guitar melodies in a fashion similar to many post-rock contemporaries. Here, however, it's all about how many instruments are working together, and as a whole they create something breathtaking. When the piano lead enters the picture, it succeeds because the stage's already set: gradual cymbal brushes, entrancing ambient textures, and a patient song structure that gives plenty of breathing room. And when the piano's added, all the pieces come together just like they should.

Novel is equally powerful on all fronts, though, keeping the listener engaged at every turn. This has much to do with its structuring, too: each song reflects a mood its neighbors don’t. The album exists as a palette to which the listener discovers new subgenres, and those who are well-versed in the existing styles can also find a really exciting journey in Jizue’s latest release.

The album covers many musical soundscapes throughout its runtime, and each one is expertly crafted. This is why Novel stands among 2012's finest, and why I implore you to check it out today. After all, it'd be a shame for the group to go on unnoticed, wouldn't it?



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user ratings (45)
Chart.
4
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
Omaha
Staff Reviewer
December 2nd 2012


10192 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

"Unnecessary pain" - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ua1G3twf6Xc
"Pray" - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CcRsH9vfrcw
"Sun" - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wHSYPFGVJ70

One stellar album. Check this one out, and spread the word to as many people as you can. This deserves to be considered for the Best of 2012 list, but this may be hard to achieve at this point.

Digging: The Contortionist - Language

VheissuCrisis
Contributing Reviewer
December 2nd 2012


969 Comments


Good work man, you've got me interested so mission accomplished.

Omaha
Staff Reviewer
December 2nd 2012


10192 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Score! Check out the first song I posted above =] and thanks.

Ecnalzen
December 2nd 2012


6531 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Just finished Unnecessary Pain and moving onto Pray. This is pretty cool. You always find the most interesting stuff, Omaha. This will be the 3rd band I've become interested in after reading one of your reviews. Good stuff.

Omaha
Staff Reviewer
December 2nd 2012


10192 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Thanks a ton, Ecnalzen! I'm very glad you've enjoyed albums I've reviewed. It makes me feel positively about my contributions to the site.

Ecnalzen
December 2nd 2012


6531 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Oh yeah, no problem. I enjoy your contributer-ship-ness (probably not a word) to the site. First Icarus The Owl, then Submotion Orchestra and now this weirdly named, Japanese band.

Calc
December 2nd 2012


12185 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

ooo this is pretty

Digging: Jizue - Shiori

Omaha
Staff Reviewer
December 2nd 2012


10192 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I've enjoyed it too, Ec. I try to bring something different to the site whenever I can, although it's also expected of us to write about albums that the userbase is really interested in.

And Iknorite?

NightmareCinema16
December 2nd 2012


2016 Comments


Yay. POS. It's good that you're giving a less known group a chance.

Omaha
Staff Reviewer
December 2nd 2012


10192 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

:]

Have you heard of Jizue before, Cinema?

Ecnalzen
December 2nd 2012


6531 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

How does being a contributor work? I'm guessing from what you just said, you aren't really assigned things. From what I've read on the site, it seems like the staff are generally assigned things to review, but can also review other things if they want.

I could be completely wrong though...

Calc
December 2nd 2012


12185 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

i think they essentially hold interviews for contributors. you dont even have to contribute that much either lol. like gyromania has barely written anything lately and he's a contributor

Omaha
Staff Reviewer
December 2nd 2012


10192 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

You're correct. We aren't assigned albums! We can "claim" them between ourselves, which is a loose term for "I'll probably review this, but if I don't get around to it you can." :P

Staffers have claiming privilege over us, and so they end up covering the bigger albums a decent amount of the time. This year, though, a lot of huge albums ended up slipping through the cracks. That's why I decided to cover a few of them. BTBAM, Submotion Orchestra, etc. And I still can't believe Flying Lotus didn't get a review from any of us.

Omaha
Staff Reviewer
December 2nd 2012


10192 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

And Calc, what do you mean by interviews? We had to prove our writing merit as contributors by consistently writing reviews. That's how I was picked.

Calc
December 2nd 2012


12185 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

you shouldve reviewed SO when it came out sir, that's the only reason i reviewed it when i did, cuz it was like 2-3 weeks afterward lol

Calc
December 2nd 2012


12185 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

by interviews i meant, and here's what i thought, the site posts an article asking for contributors, you go to the forums and ask to be one and why you'd be a good fit, they read your material and you'll get picked or not.

Omaha
Staff Reviewer
December 2nd 2012


10192 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

The release went by pretty unnoticed, though. If I had known about the album earlier I would've tried to get something up
sooner.

And yeah, that is essentially what happens. It takes consistency to get added as one, though, unless the site's trying
someone new.

Ecnalzen
December 2nd 2012


6531 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

So, you didn't ask to become one, they asked you if you were interested?

Calc
December 2nd 2012


12185 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

yeah i think i came across paperback's and breakings' "applications" so i just assumed.

Omaha
Staff Reviewer
December 2nd 2012


10192 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I applied to be one. It was a goal of mine for awhile, officially contributing more to the site and having a chance at staff one day.



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