JLIN: WHAT DO YOU SOUND LIKE?

Komplete Sketches artist Jlin is one of electronic music’s most unique voices. Watch this four-minute primer to hear her philosophy on originality and learn about her collaboration with dancer Avril Stormy Unger.

A GENRE OF HER OWN

Despite emerging from a footwork background, Gary, Indiana’s Jlin has morphed the genre’s staple sounds into something entirely new and unmistakably her own. 2015’s explosive debut album Dark Energy is a tense affair that challenges listeners and defies easy categorization. The album received unanimous praise in the music press, earning top spots on album of the year lists from The Quietus and The Wire.

Dark Lotus EP

Jlin’s latest EP, Dark Lotus sees her style drift even further away from its roots and helps solidify her status as a progressive force in electronic music. Nyakinyua Rise, the EP’s second track, is the end result of a project that began life as Jlin’s Komplete Sketches contribution. The EP preludes Jlin’s forthcoming second album Black Origami.

MUSIC MEETS MOVEMENT

Translating Jlin’s explosive sound into dance is a daunting task – one that requires an personality as unique as Jlin herself. Upon discovering choreographer and performance artist Avril Stormy Unger on Youtube, Jlin got in touch and found that the pair had a mutual appreciation for one another’s work. Avril’s particular approach to dance seemed a perfect match for Jlin’s energetic music, so the two staged a collaborative performance at MIRA festival in Barcelona in November 2016, excerpts from which can be seen in the video.

HEAR JLIN USING KOMPLETE 11

Komplete Sketches is the result of a simple challenge, issued to 24 innovative contemporary artists: Create a new musical idea using only instruments and effects from KOMPLETE 11.

Jlin’s clattering, percussive contribution to season one formed the basis for Nyakinyua Rise, the second track on her Dark Lotus EP. To create it, she used KOMPLETE 11’s WEST AFRICA, CUBA, INDIA DISCOVERY SERIES libraries.

IN-DEPTH WITH ELECTRONIC BEATS

As part of Komplete Sketches, Jlin opened up to Electronic Beats about intuition, production setups, and the creative processes that lead to her distinctive sound.

“Everything I do starts out as a blank sheet of paper,” she says. “I’m very abstract in that respect; there’s no blueprint. When people ask me what my method is, I’m like, ‘What method?’ I think if you always take the same approach it becomes stagnant after a while.”

Read the complete interview over on the Electronic Beats site.

DARK ENERGY

Dark Energy, Jlin’s 2015 debut album has earned a string of accolades since its release. Aside from taking the top honours in annual roundups from The Quietus and The Wire, it also made the year-end lists of The New York Times, FACT, Pitchfork, and Dummy. The track list includes the breakout Erotic Heat, first featured on Planet Mu’s Bangs & Works vol. 2, along with Holly Herndon collaboration Expand.

IN THE VIDEO