Jinjer Roars Into The House Of Blues Orlando Along With P.O.D., Malevolence And Space Of Variations, Orlando, Florida 12/14/22



Tonight, was going to be a big night. As I drove to the House of Blues in Orlando, I couldn’t help but think about how important music is in everyday life. Despite the fact that I’ve always held this belief close to my heart, I can’t ignore the fact that there are things that are more important. This show was originally scheduled for earlier in the year until the unthinkable happened. Actually, it’s not unthinkable since it has happened before. Instead of preparing for a monstrous spring tour, Ukrainian metal band Jinjer turned their thoughts and energy toward family, friends and loved ones as their home country was attacked and invaded by Russia. The fact that Jinjer was back out on the road raising money for their country is nothing short of amazing. Tonight, Orlando was in for a treat as Jinjer was the guest of honor at the House of Blues, and to make matters even better, they didn’t come alone.



The House of Blues in Disney Springs is one of my favorite stomping grounds. This time of year is great and the streets were bustling with vacationers, Christmas revelers and Central Florida metal maniacs. The endless sea of black clothing made it easy to tell who was who.


After meeting up with some friends, and making some new ones, we headed to the pit to prepare for the 1st of a quartet of bands that were sure to rattle your senses. Space Of Variations was on tap to kick things off. This metalcore foursome also hails from the Ukraine and just released their most recent album, Imago, a few months ago. Despite only having a 25-minute set, the band took advantage of every second. “Someone Else” and “Vein,” both from the new album, really got the crowd going. Vocalist Dima Kozhuhar took a moment to bring out the Ukrainian flag while he addressed the conflict back home. He said that his homeland was on fire and that everyone should remember to call their loved ones. Kozhuhar went on to tell the crowd that tonight everyone was here as “one.” This led into the final song of the set, 2017’s “Tibet.” Kozhuhar even took time to surf through the pit which really fired up the crowd. 


Space Of Variations:

Dima Kozhuhar: Vocals
Alex Zatserkovny: Guitar/Vocals
Anton Kasatkin: Bass
Tima Kasatkin: Drums



7:40 pm brought English metalers Malevolence to the stage. The band started off with “Malicious Intent” from this year’s album of the same name. They also got the pit circling early on and the slamming of bodies was evident throughout the packed floor. The guys must have been loving the Florida weather as most of them opted for shorts. Vocalist Alex Taylor had a continuous smile on his face when he wasn’t busy belting out lyrics. For the performance of their new single “Higher Place,” Taylor asked the fans to hold up their phone lights or lighters and they happily obliged. In addition to playing guitar, Konan Hall also shared the vocals throughout the set. “Broken Glass,” also from the new album, closed out the set. One thing’s for sure, Malevolence likes it hard and that’s exactly how they brought it tonight. 



Alex Taylor: Lead Vocals

Josh Baines: Guitar

Konan Hall: Guitar, Co-lead Vocals

Wilkie Robinson: Bass

Charlie Thorpe: Drums




1.Malicious Intent

2.Life Sentence

3.Still Waters Run Deep

4.Self Supremacy

5.Higher Place

6.Keep Your Distance

7.On Broken Glass


8:25 pm signaled the start of P.O.D.‘s set. The band (Payable On Death) has been scorching audiences for more than 30 years and don’t even try to fit them into a specific genre because they can do it all. After a short intro the band exploded into their mega-hit “Boom” which was a great choice because it set the tempo for the entire set. Sonny Sandoval, the dynamic vocalist, and frontman for the band, didn’t need anything to get himself pumped up as he came out overflowing with energy. His signature dreadlocks and the mic cord flew wildly throughout the performance. Guitarist Marcos Curiel and bassist Traa Daniels ruled their respective sides of the stage while drummer (touring) Alex Lopez tore it up on drums.


Songs like “Rock The Party” and “Soundboy Killa” allowed the band to show off their hip-hop skills and the crowd was eating it up. Sandoval told the fans that even after doing this for 31 years it never gets old. He then said, “if you’re not loosened up by now I can’t help you.” From there the band went on to play one of their anthems, “Youth Of The Nation.” For the performance of “Southtown,” the band invited vocalist Mikey Carvajal from the band Islander onstage to share the vocals. The final song of the set was the 2001 Grammy-nominated “Alive.” P.O.D. excels in their live performances and tonight was no exception. Please take time to check out the Youth Of The Nation Foundation which does tremendous work for the young people of the world.



Sonny Sandoval: Lead Vocals

Traa Daniels: Bass, Backing Vocals

Marcos Curiel: Lead Guitar, Programming, Backing Vocals

Alex Lopez: Drums, Rhythm Guitar, Backing Vocals (Touring)

Luis Castillo: Keyboards, Percussion





2.Murdered Love

3.Rock The Party (Off The Hook)

4.Sleeping Awake

5.Soundboy Killa

6.Youth Of The Nation

7.When Angels & Serpents Dance





As 9:35 pm arrived, the capacity crowd was resonating with anticipation. The house lights went black, and the fans roared as Jinjer appeared onstage. Formed in Donetsk, Ukraine, Jinjer has been electrifying audiences around the world for more than 12 years. Having won Best Ukrainia Metal Band on multiple occasions, Jinjer seems destined to conquer the rest of the world. 


Charasmatic vocalist Tatiana Shmailyuk danced out to center stage as the band opened with 2016’s “Sit Stay Roll Over.” Clad in a pair of long skirt-like pants, a form-fitting long-sleeved half-shirt and combat boots, it was clear that Shmailyuk meant business. Her long whip-like braids lashed ferociously every time she cranked her head. She thanked the fans for coming out and showing their support and reminded them that this was the 2nd time in 10 years that their homes had been taken.



Jinjer’s most recent album, Wallflowers, was released last year and has received high accolades from the music industry. With that in mind, it comes as no surprise that 7 cuts from the new album found their way into tonight’s set, including “Copycat,” “Vortex,” “Sleep Of The Righteous,” and “Call Me A Symbol.” Sporting a Nirvana t-shirt, bassist Eugene Abdukhanov was stellar throughout the show. Shmailyuk would frequently use her cat-like prowess to crouch closely to the crowd where she would serenade them directly. Guitarist Roman Ibramkhalilov didn’t get any breaks as he was busy delivering a scintillating display for the fans. As the crowd surfers kept the security staff occupied, the band knocked out some jaw-breaking hits like “Who’s Gonna Be The One” and fan-favorite, “Pisces.” For the duration of the show, it was drummer Vladislav Ulasevich that provided the beats that helped set the pace for this sensational set.


After exiting the stage, the band returned for an encore after raucous chants of “Jinjer” echoed throughout the venue. The band must have found a secret supply of energy backstage because their rendition of “On The Top” was arguably the most explosive of the night. The fans left happy and satisfied after quenching their appetite on a menu of metal, served up by 4 outstanding bands. There are only a handful of dates left on this tour, but rest assured that all of these artists will be busy in the upcoming year. Please follow them all online (links below).


On a closing note, I wanted to reflect on my final takeaway from this evening. The resiliency and passion shown by tonight’s Ukrainian performers is remarkable. To be so far from home during these times, raising support and funds for their homeland is beyond commendable. The country I live in is far from perfect. Political, economic and social issues are plentiful from border to border, but it is home. As I walked to my car, I passed several people wearing concert shirts, but the one bearing “We Want Our Home Back” in the Ukrainian colors is the one that will remain emblazoned in my mind.


Jinjer :

Tatiana Shmailyuk – vocals
Roman Ibramkhalilov – Guitar
Eugene Abdukhanov – Bass
Vladislav Ulasevich – Drums





1.Sit Stay Roll Over

2.Teacher, Teacher!


4.Home Back

5.I Speak Astronomy

6.As I Boil Ice

7.Judgement (& Punishment)

8.Dead Hands Feel No Pain


10.Who’s Gonna Be The One

11.Sleep Of The Righteous

12.Call Me A Symbol




15.On The Top





Follow Space Of Variations Online:

Follow Malevolence Online:

Follow P.O.D Online:

Follow Jinjer Online: