Music genres can get excruciatingly set in their ways. There’s precious little originality in most new music. So, I lean towards genre crossing bands. They make music that’s a bit of this, a touch of that, and a bucket of awesome. These sorts of bands are impossible to pin down, and may not get the love they deserve simply because contemporary radio can’t peg them into a category. A band just popped up on my radar that completely blew my skirt up, Brooklyn based Shinobi Ninja. They take several different kinds of music, stomp it flat, and flesh it out to something downright unique. They are now at the forefront of a new musical movement: Afropunk.
First, the facts: Shinobi Ninja formed in 2008 in the Hells Kitchen area of New York City after several members met at a local recording studio. The band is comprised of Baby G (Vocals), Alien Lex (Bass Guitar), Terminator Dave (Drums), DJ Axis Powers (Turntables), Kid Shreddi aka Maniak Mike [Guitar(D.A.)], Doobie aka Duke Sims (Vocals, Guitar). Several members are related; Alien Lex and D.A. are cousins, Terminator Dave & Maniak Mike are fraternal twins. Unlike many of the bands I’ve reviewed here on Jealous Sounds, Shinobi Ninja has tons of recorded material.
Rock Hood (2011)
Escape From New York / Return From… (Double Album) (2014)
Artistic Visions (2015)
Brooklyn To Babylon (2009)
The Video Game EP (2010)
LiL Bud B-Sides (2011)
The Chronicles Of DAB & Friends (2014)
Joining this body of work, there are numerous singles. Shinobi Ninja has also branched out into multimedia, such as songs recorded for videogames, “Rock Hood” for NBA 2K. They even had their own IOS game in 2010, “Shinobi Ninja Attacks!”. They tour extensively, famous for their insanely high wattage live performances. Their tours included several SXSW’s and Warped Tours, and multitudes of various bands from disparate genres.
Shinobi Ninja take modern music and throw it on its ear. They encase may styles into their own unique brand: eclectic, hip hop, punk, funk, metal, reggae, electronic, and rock. The music melts in your mind from metalcore to dance in equal degrees. What truly ups their game is Baby G’s vocals, it being so rare and refreshing to hear her female voice weaving its way through the melodies. You don’t sit during their shows, and you sure as hell don’t sit still when the music starts. Shinobi Ninja is the best example of Afropunk ; fearless, open minded, fiercely creative. They are cool water to a freakishly thirsty scene.
Shinobi Ninja can be found at all the usual streaming and online music sites.
http://www.shinobininja.com All access to tour info and music.