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JAMBINAI: Tiny Desk (Home) Concert

The Tiny Desk is working from home for the foreseeable future. Introducing NPR Music's Tiny Desk (home) concerts, bringing you performances from across the country and the world. It's the same spirit — stripped-down sets, an intimate setting — just a different space.

I don't think I've ever used the word "fierce" to describe a Tiny Desk, but that's precisely what JAMBINAI has created in this (home) concert. The show begins in front of a massive recreation of my desk and what happens next ... well, no spoilers here. Filmed in an immersive media art museum created by an organization known as d'strict on Jeju Island, this Korean band contains multitudes. At its heart, JAMBINAI's music mixes elements of metal, noise and Korean tradition. There's full-on distorted guitar, bass and drums, but also a haegeum (a fiddle-like instrument), a piri (a type of flute), a taepyeongso (a reed instrument) and a most appropriately named instrument, a geomungo (a giant Korean zither). We also hear some delicate vocals in the mix.

The two pieces performed here include 2015's "Time of Extinction" and the more recent and epic "ONDA." I last saw JAMBINAI on two consecutive nights at SXSW in 2014 and then again at the 2021 virtual festival. It reminded me of their intensity and originality, and I look forward to the day when they come and play a more modest, tinier desk and, perhaps, shake the shelves.


  • "Time Of Extinction"
  • "ONDA"

  • Ilwoo Lee: guitar, piri, taepyeongso, saenghwang, vocals
  • Bomi Kim: haegeum, vocals
  • Eunyong Sim: geomungo, vocals
  • Byeongkoo Yu: bass, chorus
  • Jaehyuk Choi: drums, chorus

  • Director: Jinho Park
  • Producer: Hyunggun Kim (The Tell-Tale Heart)
  • Video Production: DEEPCUT
  • D.O.P: Hanhee Cho
  • Production Assistant: Younggyun Lee
  • Audio Recording: Minjae Lee (ssplworkz)
  • Audio Mixed and Mastered: Sanghyun Cho (M.O.L STUDIOS)
  • Media Art Installation: d'strict
  • Special thanks to Stella Heesun Suh (KOCCA), Victor Eun Suk Choe (d'strict), Yunjung Yeum (d'strict), Sangwoo Lee (d'strict) Sangjin Lee (d'strict)

  • Producer: Bob Boilen
  • Video Producer: Maia Stern
  • Audio Mastering: Andy Huether
  • Associate Producer: Bobby Carter
  • Tiny Production Team: Kara Frame, Josh Rogosin, Gabrielle Pierre
  • Executive Producer: Keith Jenkins
  • Senior VP, Programming: Anya Grundmann
  • Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit

    In 1988, a determined Bob Boilen started showing up on NPR's doorstep every day, looking for a way to contribute his skills in music and broadcasting to the network. His persistence paid off, and within a few weeks he was hired, on a temporary basis, to work for All Things Considered. Less than a year later, Boilen was directing the show and continued to do so for the next 18 years.
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