Now Playing: Jay Katana’s ‘Bleeding Boyfriend Mixtape’

Image courtesy of Jay Katana

Performer Jay Katana has a new disc out. It’s is titled Bleeding Boyfriend Mixtape. But first, for those not yet familiar with the artist in question, a bit o’ background.

Jay Katana

Image courtesy of Joymill Photography

According to his website, Katana is a Georgia, Atlanta-based musician and composer originally from Moldova. In 2016 he created “’Bleeding Boyfriend Vol. 1′, a comic book series with electronic dance metal soundtracks.” His rock resume also includes several releases including his premiere solo platter 2017’s Brighter Than Your Future. He was also in the East Coast rock-metal group, Pool of Thorns.

Signature sound

Jay Katana’s signature sound has grown to become something one might label electronic dance metal. It contains a mix of music genres, including dubstep, electronica, heavy metal, hip-hop, pop, R&B, and rock.

Bleeding Boyfriend Mixtape

On this album, Katana serves as guitarist and programmer as he also produces the synthetic drums and other sounds on the CD. In a recent email, Katana discussed his musical methods. He said:

“In the past, it was more of [a] traditional way of creating guitar riffs, verse, and chorus melodies and then building it into a song. [This new approach] was created after I changed my music tastes and started listening heavily to Dubstep and Hip Hop. That lead me to study modern production and switch to different ways of composing music.”

He added: “Now while working on every song I would create a drum beat and then develop buildups and drops. [The] integration of the guitar into dubstep beats was challenging but interesting. Mostly it replaced that heavy distorted and wobbling bass. At the same time, I used acoustic guitar over slow R&B riffs.”

Katana notes: “All six tracks follow each other and come together as a mixtape due to different beat and mood changes. Mixtapes are common for dance DJs and hip hop artists as a non-conceptual compilation. In my case, it happened to [be] conceptual.”

He concluded: “Artistically this album is a tribute to the part of my life that finally is over. Nightlife, freedom, one night stands, social dynamics, romances, broken hearts, saved lives, lost friends, found loves, shame, facing fears, self-improvement and definitely no regrets. Goals achieved. Points proved. Price paid.”

On this EP Katana creates evocative sounds on tracks that vary in length from under one minute to a bit over four minutes. They also vary in tempo and melody and are all imaginative. It is a blend of guitar riffs and a melange of other digital audio sounds and effects.

Track by track

This six-track, all-instrumental EP opens on the apropos “Mixtape.” Immediately it is obvious this is something a little different. This initial instrumental is essentially a cross between generic rock and underground music.

The second selection is “Letter From Child.” This one takes a new direction. It’s a bit quieter and almost calming.

The next number “Shadow Of My Eyes.” By the end of this cut, it is obvious that each composition contains elements that while in synch with his signature sound are different enough to maintain their own little identities.

“ . . .Your Eyes” follows. This one stands out for its brevity and backing vocal track. You cannot dislike it because it’s over before you can judge it.

“KissClosed” was released before the EP and once you hear it you will know why. This one takes the “Critic’s Choice” here. It somehow brings to mind the idea of exploration, personal perceptions, and relationships.

The closing cut is “I’m Done.” It’s one final quiet, understated example of Katana’s abilities.

Overall, this release takes standard metal guitar-shredding instrumentals to another level by blending it with different sub-genres of electronic dance music to create something different. It is an ample sample of Katana’s new and different direction. Katana described it thusly:

“This time Electronic Dance Metal goes to the next level by exploring the new grounds of Dubstep and Hip Hop beats. While at the same time the Acoustic Guitar is used more than before”.

There you have it. Now go check out Jay Katana’s Bleeding Boyfriend Mixtape because “I’m Done.”