Written by Mike Hohnen on 25th July, 2012
Earlier this month, Sydney funk outfit Junk released their debut self-titled EP. The 6-track offering, though independently released and recorded, shows no signs of anything that could be considered amateur. From the get-go the tasty groove inflicted by Junk hits you like a bolt of lightning: a sexy, smooth bolt of lightning that is.
The release opens up strong with Sex Trumpet. It’s the nuance of the songwriting that will first grab your attention. Trumpets, sax, guitar and drums seem to come in and out as they please, and to be cliche, the notes not played seem to have just as much, if not more impact than the ones played. Though there’s a constant theme of ‘less is more’, not for a second does it come off as lazy, as it does with many acts. But rather the opposite. While I suppose I could be guilty of reading too much into the music, listening to tracks such as She Knows It puts a strong image in my head of a band strictly structuring their songs, with each sound having to prove its worth, fighting for existence. And the fury of that oozes through in the final product.
As the EP tracks along, eventually we come to Nothing. Starting off with a slick bass riff, the song gradually builds and builds, and by the time the chorus hits, it has some of the most vivid texture on the CD. And even as the song continues, the score is stripped down, only to escalate again and again. The male/female vocalists add even more dimension to the song that somehow the brass and other instruments fell short of. Listening to how the vocal melodies play together over the top of the instruments is half the experience of the EP.
The release finishes with Morning Light. One of the more down tempo jams off the release, it’s the perfect finale. The smooth sax, jogging bass guitar and stylish drums blend with the vocals for this ballard-esque ditty. The perfect comedown from the rest of the tracks, Morning Light is the kind of tune you’d like to hear watching the sun rise on a Sunday morning after a night out. Junk’s self-titled EP is a remarkable first release. The band clearly has a lot to say, and will hopefully keep the momentum going.