Tuesday 14 July 2020


For those that don't know a "Jumbee" is a type of mythological spirit or demon in the folklore of some Caribbean countries, it is also the name used by a Krakow based duo consisting of Piotr "Deadi" Dedel ( guitars/bass/drums) and Tobiasz Targosz (vocals) a duo whose simple description of what they do is summed up in their sage statement "we play heavy shit!", something one listen to their debut album "The Smell of Red Sunset Air" will most certainly confirm.

Jumbee may describe what they do as simply "heavy shit" but the truth is there is a lot more to this band than first meets the ear, this might not be immediately apparent as the first strains of opening track "Karma Dumplings" explodes from the speakers with a relentless barrage of djent(ish) guitar riffage, throat shredding vocals and thundering thrash-like rhythms, but then along comes "33" and the first signs of Jumbee's musical diversity starts to peek through. The shift from all out stoner metal attack to something a little more restrained is a subtle one and presents itself mainly in the songs vocals and finds Targosz  replacing the feral roars he employed for "Karma Dumpling" for a cleaner more grunge/alt-rock approach, an approach not too dissimilar to that used by Seattle's Alice In Chains, albeit in their heavier moments. The djent type rhythms and guitar techniques return for "Red Moon" but are this time accompanied by a little prog-like texturing while following tracks "Morose" and "Fragrance" find the band mixing their AIC leanings with a little Dopelord like stoner doom bluster. "Dump Swing" takes the low, slow and heavy route and finds Dedel offsetting his crunching, slightly slurred guitar refrains with an array of effects to give the song an off-kilter lysergic feel, a feel further enhanced by Targosz slightly off centered vocals. "Mud" follows and again we find the band mixing their grunge with their metal but this time swapping that Alice In Chains vibe, which has informed seventy five percent of the album so far, for a more doomic early Stone Temple Pilots feel. Title track "The Smell of Red Sunset Air" closes proceedings with a song that brings together many of the elements visited on previous tracks and then adds into the mix a little post-rock texturing.

Given the fact that Piotr "Deadi" Dedel plays all the instrumentation and Tobiasz Targosz just provides the vocals the likelihood of this duo hitting a stage anytime soon seems, for now, doubtful but that should not deter those out there, who like their stoner and doom spliced with a little grunginess, from scoping out "The Smell of Red Sunset Air". This is a fantastic debut that should be gracing the collections of any "underground" rock fan with an undying love of a heavy groove.
Check it out .... 

© 2020 Frazer Jones

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