Jose Gonzalez, Elias Araya and Tobias Winterkorn AKA Junip are set to release their new self-titled album on April 22. Junip’s self-titled album is a flawless, emotional and stimulating record that should not be missed.
The album features the recent releases Line of Fire and Your Life, Your Call. But these two tracks are not the best tracks on the record by far. Walking Lightly is a to-die-for favourite. It has Indian musical influences within it heard through the guitar playing, the flute, pan pipes and the tempo. This all gives it a great dynamic and a wonderfully uplifting feel despite the downtrodden vocals sung by Gonzalez. The harmonies in this song are spot-on and really help to build it as a number. Despite the fact that the main lyrics of “We’re all walking lightly, we’re all…” are repeated hundreds of times throughout with little other lyrics to satisfy, this song remains a favourite. The way the song is built, produced and maintained is fantastic. It is not about the lyrics for a change but the structure of the track.
The track that follows Walking Lightly, Head First sounds like Nick Drake, Air and the Beta Band have all been fused together in one band. It’s a brilliant track which sees a very Nick Drake inspired opening mixed with Air and the Beta Band’s style of ‘folktronica’. The lyrics in this song bring back Junip’s philosophical side that was absent in Walking Lightly. Head First is about the decisions humans make, the regrets they have and whether occasionally we should just jump in head first instead of being hesitant and over-thinking everything.
The following track Baton is quite jazzy compared to other tracks like So Clear and Villian which have a more distorted, slightly heavier sound. Baton again feels like some inspiration may have been taken from Nick Drake. Nick Drake was amazing at producing Sunday morning music and Baton definitely has a Sunday morning feel to it. The whistling is what really helps to give this song that profound modern jazz feel. It has to be said that the best tracks on this record are definitely those cushioned in the middle between the other songs.
This album should be on every traveller’s MP3 player. There are many world influences that can be heard in each song, it’s the sort of album that allows your head to disappear into day dreams of places like Bali. It’s exactly the sort of music you want on in the background while you’re travelling on a train or bus through an amazing landscape in a hot, sunny country. It’s an album that allows your mind to become active and your emotions to come forward. It engages your senses; there are not many albums that can achieve this.
Junip, as a whole, have a dynamic that allows them to produce layers in their songs. There’s depth both in the lyrics and music. Every song captivates you, makes you think and draws you in as the band has this astonishing ability to produce stimulating yet entirely relaxing tracks. Junip’s self-titled release is a no flaws spotted album, every song is mesmerising. They have a unique sound that cannot be beat.
Junip’s self-titled album is out on April 22 through City Slang.