Most recently in the state for Volumes Festival, Jaala return to celebrate the release of the new single Junior Spirit.
They jump straight into a new tune for the Sydney crowd, titled Frog, and it is immediately apparent that this band have come a long way since their last visit. The discordant, jazzy tendencies of the Melbourne four-piece pierce through the room, always followed by a luscious melodic resolve. Hard Hold and Salt Shaker are a couple of favourites that the crowd devours, finally permitted to sway to a more consistent rhythm. These two songs aside, Sydney is treated to a set of new material, which is a rare and brave move.
The new songs bring hope for a new album, as it doesn’t seem that Jaala have any issues writing consistently brilliant tunes. Vocalist Cosima Jaala shifts form thick, velvet melodies to the atonal yelping we have come to love seamlessly and regularly. Her vocals reach a new soulful quality at one point, with perfect traces of Little Dragon scattered through.
Jaala are a young band, yet they play with true precision. With structural interchangeability at the forefront of Jaala’s relentless song-writing, it is important for the songs to be played accurately, and somehow, they manage. The four-piece know these songs inside and out, which is lucky, because the crowd doesn’t have a clue what’s going on; if it’s verse two, chorus five or bridge 20, and that is the entire premise of Jaala.
The lights are still and so is the crowd in Newtown Social Club tonight and, for one reason or another, the show drifts in and out of stagnancy. A great performance and a packed venue do not equate to a vibrant energy for Jaala on this particular night, but maybe they like to play it cool.
“Where’s the merch?” – Cosi ponders into the microphone as she realises that she is about to miss out on her fans’ cash, the merch table nowhere to be seen.