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Shining Ditch the Blackjazz on New Song “Animal”

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Norway’s Shining have hung their hats on the whole “blackjazz” thing since their explosive 2010 breakthrough album of the same name. Melding a black metal aesthetic with jazzy saxophone punctuations and wrapping it all up in a ’90s-inspired industrial shell was a winning combination that turned heads in the metal community and gained the band quite a bit of notoriety.

Now it seems Shining are ready to leave their blackjazz roots behind in favor of something entirely different. By band mastermind Jørgen Munkeby’s own admission, he’s aiming to go in a more pop-oriented direction on the band’s latest album:

“I was tired of doing the same thing. I was done with ‘Blackjazz’ and wanted to create something new and exciting. I needed a change. I’m finally at the point where I have nothing to lose and everything to win. We had 360 degrees to play with so we could’ve gone in any direction. This new record is more Muse than Meshuggah, more Ghost than Gojira, and more Biffy Clyro than Burzum!”

I totally get it! And if I’m being honest, I think Munkeby is making the right move here: the whole blackjazz thing ran out of gas three albums in, and it was time for something new. As a fan, I’m [almost] always in favor of changes in direction; hearing different versions of the same thing over and over again gets boring, just as it does for the musicians to write and play.

So: now we get “Animal,” the first single from Shining’s upcoming album of the same name. With the black metal and jazz influences completely stripped away, we’re left with an industrial-inspired pop metal banger… and it’s infectious and catchy as hell! It still sounds like Shining. This is the same band you love. They haven’t introduced anything crazy and new… the emphasis is just on a different part of their sound. And, unsurprisingly, it’s fucking great.

Check out “Animal” below. Animal comes out on October 19th through Spinefarm Records and can be pre-ordered here.

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