Australia is already warmly embracing the Gothenburg trio’s latest offering; Junip’s current single “Your Life, Your Call” has been added to rotation on Triple J, as well as enjoying spins on community radio nationally.
Formed in Gothenburg, Sweden, in 1998 and fronted by inimitable singer-songwriter, José González, Junip the album has been a long time coming.
Rounded out by drummer Elias Araya and keyboardist Tobias Winterkorn, Junip was recorded and self-produced by the trio and Don Alsterberg (Soundtrack of Our Lives, International Noise Conspiracy).
Junip comprises ten tracks of existential crisis that González describes as being “…about growing up and taking responsibility in that moment when all of a sudden your life changes, you’re in a new situation…your ideals are challenged and you have to think things through from a new angle.”
The attitude and mood of the album is expressed at the outset with opener, “Line of Fire”. Melding melody with motorik repetition while building to a dramatic, symphonic climax, González asks, “What would you say/If you had to leave today/Leave everything behind/Even though, for once, you’re shining?”
Current single, “Your Life, Your Call”, straddles the divide between melancholic sentiment and infectious drum-machine handclaps and exuberant singsong chorus. The song is a tightrope act that González himself took time to adjust to. “I felt like trying on new clothes when we first listened to it – it took a while to get comfortable with it…” he says.
Junip, for all its brooding darkness and melodrama, is ultimately about redemption. As González explains, “…the grass will grow after snow melts away: finding that hopeful feeling between the lines, that’s what the whole record is about.”
Watch the two-part cinematic video clips for Line of Fire and current single, Your Life, Your Call. Directed by Swedish filmmaker Mikel Cee Karlsson, the clips are both visually unnerving and spine-tingling, yet delicately beautiful creations.