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  • MONDAY, OCTOBER 04, 2010

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"Happy music, but not too happy" is the simple tag Junip's Tobias Winterkorn attaches to the new project from he, Ilias Araya, and infamous solo artist Jose Gonzalez. He is right. There is a certain unquantifiable mysticism at work, and you can feel it in our latest concert video. Here the guys rummage about jammy tunes that rise and fall suddenly, drawing cries of enjoyment from the audience with each additional layer. Gonzalez himself is the epitome of modesty, smiling and nodding after a closed-eye trance, with a simple, Swedish tinted "thank you" at the conclusion of every song. These guys wouldn't know "pretentious" if it decided to sit in with them.

Of course "action" is a loose statement for Junip's aesthetic, somewhere in between drone and trance; bongo-infused salsa and the elongated jam sessions of legends like Morrison and the Doors. Gonzalez writes melodies worthy of desert cut scenes, images of long drives and the hot sun fit perfectly with his rhythmic nylon guitar riffs. When the band sparked, drums dropping in and out, heads bobbing, the whole thing felt as dynamic as a stage full of backup dancers and fanfare. Sometimes the most exciting climaxes are the ones that exist only in the sonic sphere. - joe puglisi

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