Jose Gonzalez is no secret in the music world (at least in Sweden). After having already released multiple solo items and collaborations, he has finally come out and formed the band Junip.
Junip's new self-titled sophomore release does everything a self-titled album should do. While not being too conceptual or experimental, the album's overall sound is a mix of ambient electronic/psychedelic folk rock that really solidifies the foundation for the band's sound. You really can't pin the specific arrangements to any genre or sound type but can't deny Gonzalez's attempts to create a spiritual experience while listening. The opening track and main single "Line of Fire" has a great opening build, while the guitar strums increase the percussion use amplifies and the strings come in to build the once light song into a rollercoaster of a track. The track "Walking Lightly" has one of the smoother grooves of the track, mixing a very tribal beat with overpowering chords of electronic ambience. Other tracks like "Suddenly" and "Head First" are where the band really shines, keeping the beat slower and really putting Gonzalez's guitar playing in spotlight while higher pitched synthesizers float around the melody line. Lyrically the album is very emotional, the opening track being a warning of getting over emotional and irrational. Gonzalez's singing voice only adds to the soul of the record, having a very light and tenderness about the way he sings. Although the record isn't the most exceptional experimental indie album experience, what keeps it charm is its undeniable sense of sureness in the band's sound.
Recommended Tracks: "Line of Fire", "Suddenly", "Walking Lightly", "Head First"
Sounds Like: Broken Bells, Cass McCombs, Poor Man, Iron and Wine