Dawn of Midi. The band is touring behind their new self-titled disc (Mute) which came out on April 23rd and this disc is the band’s follow-up to 2010’s Fields.
Junip’s latest disc is an eclectic affair - the core sound of the band is based around José González’s warm and mellow vocals and hypnotic electronica rhythms but the band branches off from this core into krautrock, California folk, indie dance and hazy psychedelia. The psych-folk label shouldn’t scare anyone off as there are a lot of layers within each of the songs and there are numerous occasions across this disc that bring to mind Spacemen 3. Junip though doesn’t succumb to Spacemen 3’s ‘acid casualty’ extended jams as the interplay between the sounds and instrumentation on this new disc is immaculately precise but the commonality between the bands is that this is music that you can float off to during a late night listen As such, it came as no surprise when reading a review of one of the band’s recent live shows that they played in near darkness for most of the set.
Some of the stronger cuts on the disc are disc opener “Line of Fire” which has a synth-rock opening similar to that of The Bravery and González’s vocals and harmonies carry the song’s melody as the song builds to add lush orchestration over its krautrock percussive foundation. Other strong tracks are the drum machine-driven dance floor number “Your Call”, the pounding garage rock of “Villain” with its fuzzed-out bass line and overloaded synths and the hazy, Spacemen 3-like psychedelic drone of “Walking Lightly”. The lyrics give the songs an additional sense of texture and González said that the lyrics were written to “make you feel something, and create an emotion. There’s a high ambition to reach deep emotions, and I tend to write about these topics.”
As with the first album, this new self-titled disc was recorded in the trio’s rehearsal space over the course of a year and self-produced by the band with help from Don Alsterberg (sound guru to artists like Soundtrack of Our Lives, International Noise Conspiracy and Graveyard).