Jeniferever - Nangijala

Craig Broad 25/02/2009

Rating: 3/5

Jeniferever have been a band building up steam since their formation in 1996 and their first EP release in 2002. With their first full length release 'Choose a Bright Morning' on Drowned In Sound record label, they found themselves gaining an underground following that they had worked extremely hard to deserve.

Fast forward to the present, 2009 and we will find Jeniferever with an even bigger amount of shows and tours from all over Europe under their belt of experience but alas, no new release and a seemingly broken relationship with Big Scary Monsters which made any future release look even more unlikely.

With this however, comes the re-release of a three track EP entitled 'Nangijala', seemingly named after a pre-technology, medieval realm in the book, The Brothers Lionheart by Astrid Lindgrin. While the thought of an EP rather than a full length release on their latest label, Naim, seems to hint towards a testing of the waters scenario rather than an all out attack, gone now is the beautiful landscape artwork of their previous releases that they would perhaps be admired for, this an abstract but minimalist new approach that doesn't quite seem to fit within the mood of the band or their music.

So, does this change in label, artwork and perhaps attitude have a reaction whether positive or negative within the songs on 'Nangijala'?

The answer is no. Whilst everything around them seems to have changed, including the music scene and trends, on 'Nangijala' you will find exactly what anyone who has heard Jeniferever has come to expect within one of their releases which is a slow, emotional and beautiful sound that is akin to albums by Sigur Rós and bands of the like. While perhaps this isn't a bad thing to anyone who is already a fan of Jeniferever or indeed a fan of bands that they sound like and while it won't be a bad thing to the small niché of music lovers who enjoy slow building ambient and/or post-rock music, 'Nangijala' certainly won't be a record to bring them mainstream success.

It is something to admire within Jeniferever that they do not change to fit in with the current trend and that they continue to do things their own way, but with such a gap between 'Choose a Bright Morning' and 'Nangijala' it is easy to wonder why they haven't used the time more wisely? Growing as much as they possibly can and should and while "Nangijala" contains everything good about Jeniferever, it also contains all the negative parts that will keep Jeniferever Sweden's best kept secret for a little while longer.