JIMKATA: In Motion
By Abigail Gomez
I heard Jimkata for the first time at Aura Music and Arts Festival last winter in northern Florida. Their sound is magnetic, and I couldn’t stop dancing until they had finished their set. They are masterful entertainers, giving the crowd an emotionally engaging auditory and visual performance. Ever since then I’ve been a fan of this funky, 80’s inspired electronic rock band from upstate New York.
Though transitioning internally from a quartet to a trio, band mates Evan Friedell, Aaron Gorsch, and Packy Lunn have come together creatively, reaching deep into themselves and spending time developing their sound and their music. The result of this journey is an album ripe with grooving dance beats and meaningful storytelling.
Jimkata’s newest album In Motion dropped on February 12th. It was completely funded by their fans, and after hearing it for the first time I can see why there are so many people eager and willing to support these incredibly talented musicians. They’ve blended their 80’s vibe and throwback synths with upbeat pop hooks. And the lyrics are just as engaging and memorable as the music itself: there is an expressive emotion present in the storytelling that leads the listener to feel subtly empowered and uplifted.
In Motion begins with “Wild Ride”, a catchy song with an energized electronic dance beat that sets the tone for an adventurous album, as Jimkata departs into a newly evolved musical style. “Jumping out of Airplanes” takes on a slightly more somber tone, while still maintaining the danceable beat. The delicate string instrumentation twinkling behind the lyrics adds to the depth and layers created musically and lyrically. You can hear the emotion in the voices blending together in harmony. “Won’t Let You Down” follows with heavier guitar riffs and synthesized voices professing unending support and friendship, through beats that still make your feet move with joy. Song by song, the album instills a subtle feeling of well-being, acceptance, and positivity. More natural instrumentation over the synthesized melody introduces “In the Moment,” and recalls the band’s rock roots. “Older and Wonder” is my favorite song on the album. Beyond the beats that make my body sway, when I heard the first line, “Cheap pack of Indian smokes in the snow on the side of the road in Painted Post…” I was transported back to my hometown in upstate New York, imagining Painted Post in the snow, which is an image that I grew up with, and remember well. The entire song talks about the idea of “home” and “the love that you will always know.” Their words and melodic music with that song transport me back into a wonderful and welcome nostalgia. The entire album has a deeper level of connection and meaning than I’ve witnessed in their music before.
Jimkata currently has tour dates scheduled around the country until the beginning of July. Check out their albums, including In Motion, tour dates, and more at jimkata.com.