Listen to Junius

Junius is a Boston-based quartet that sounds like the child of Depeche Mode and Underoath, infusing the modern intensity and heaviness of the latter with the melancholic, haunting voice of the former.

Their atmospheric art-rock sound has been winning them points across various magazines, from Amplifier Magazine praising them with “the potential to emerge as the bridge between post-grunge and the future of alternative rock,” to Alternative Press crediting them with “the best soundtrack for reveling in the melancholy of actually living since My Bloody Valentine’s Loveless.”

By Jesse Farine

Contributer

Junius is a Boston-based quartet that sounds like the child of Depeche Mode and Underoath, infusing the modern intensity and heaviness of the latter with the melancholic, haunting voice of the former.

Their atmospheric art-rock sound has been winning them points across various magazines, from Amplifier Magazine praising them with “the potential to emerge as the bridge between post-grunge and the future of alternative rock,” to Alternative Press crediting them with “the best soundtrack for reveling in the melancholy of actually living since My Bloody Valentine’s Loveless.”

“Forcing out the Silence” is Junius’s debut EP, released back in 2004. Joseph E. Martinez’s voice, tinged with loneliness and despair, soars above the music as he and Mike Respach-Nieves create rich, pressing layers of dual guitars, all of which is best experienced in “From the Isle of the Blessed.” Dave Soucy’s bass has such an oppressive, electronic-machine heaviness and drone, and the drums, on behalf of Dana Filloon, add much to the dynamism of an already cinematic experience. There isn’t much silence in these five angst-ridden songs.

The song entitled “Blood is Bright,” came along in 2006, and the introductory song, “The Annunciation,” shows that the dark clouds above their heads still hadn’t let any rays of sun through. However, don’t think that that lack of sunlight had paled their music; their music became even more rich and complex, quiet and contemplative. Choral back-up vocals help to add an eerie, ghost-like flavor to this batch of songs. The third track from this album, “A Word Could Kill Her,” was the first song I had heard from Junius, and that song is the reason why I am writing this article. This EP and their first were compiled together last year on one self-titled CD as “Blood is Bright” is currently out of print and “Forcing out the Silence” is in its final pressing.

Last year, Junius also released a 7-inch vinyl record of all new material: “The Fires of Antediluvia.” The two songs on this record are both around the 7 minute mark. The title track swells with layered, spacey guitars progressing into a cathartic climax, then dies down into minimalist, whispering guitar line. Eventually, their heart starts to beat again and remembers the angst that made it die in the first place, transcending into another powerful release of emotion which quickly resolves. The B-side, “Centurion,” is a crushing and dark instrumental piece; a perfect compliment.

Junius will be touring across the European continent from Halloween until just before Thanksgiving. A new release is imminent, and I am anxious to hear the latest piece in the dark, emotional saga of Junius. Go to their website, , which will direct you to their MySpace page and the Radar Recordings website so you can buy all of their stuff once you fall in love with them.