About a month ago Alternative Press premiered the music video for Junius‘ song “All Shall Float“, one of the many terrific songs from the album “Reports From The Threshold of Death“. Their label finally released the video on their YouTube page and it’s available for anyone who happened to have missed out. I highly recommend listening to Junius, I usually listen to heavier music but this album is mesmerizing. If you like Muse & Deftones, you’ll greatly appreciate this.
The name itself, Exotic Animal Petting Zoo, is enough to spark interest in many things. Especially if it’s a rock band, with a name like that you HAVE to see what they are about. I think it’s an incredible strategy because it immediately makes you want to read about the band, listen to the band and see what they have to offer. Well, once the music starts, Exotic Animal Petting Zoo come in and give us exactly what we should expect for the rest of their new album, “Tree of Tongues“. It’s a forceful impact of energy and just a huge wall of sound that isn’t like what I usually listen to. I’m usually the death, black, grind and doom kind of guy. With a few exceptions of course so when I saw that EAPZ was compared to bands like Deftones and Dillinger Escape Plan I was like “Yeah, fucking right. That’s some ballsy shit saying your sound is similar to their sound.” Well, they are pretty fucking close and so much more. Exotic Animal Petting Zoo’s “Tree of Tongues” is new, fun, fresh and really really really good. It’s an entirely new genre of music, due to the fact they have no barriers. The sound on Tree of Tongues is a unique sound and I am literally blown away after each and every listen.
A big “FUCK YES!” is in order! I love this band and the new album is pure gold. It’s amazing in every way possible and this video makes me want to catch them live.
1. Autre Temps (Album Version)
2. Là Où Naissent Les Couleurs Nouvelles
3. Les Voyages De L’Âme
4. Nous Sommes L’Emeraude
5. Beings Of Light
6. Faiseurs De Mondes
8. Summer’s Glory
Alcest makes a triumphant return with their latest album, “Les Voyages De L’Âme“. This beautiful post-black album has everything you’d want and expect from the band. While experiencing the album, I felt like I was walking across a field. Enjoying the air and the trees. Reaching a river bank and stopping to enjoy the scene and nature. The music on this album is good for the soul. The tones of the guitar and singing just really touch you in a way that many bands would only dream of. Les Voyages De L’Âme is just soothing and while it does feature some black metal vocals, those are very rare. It’s mainly great composition and singing that would make anyone appreciate it.
Turns out Les Voyages De L’Âme in English means “The Journeys of the Soul“, and this album definitely takes your soul on a journey. It’s like a combination of how Agalloch/Falloch and Junius makes me feel. You can thank Neige for most of the work as he covers guitars, bass, synth and vocals on the album. Drum work is done by Winterhalter. If you like to think, feel and dream while listening to your music. Then Alcest has created the perfect album for you.
While the album is very well done, it tends to get repetitive if I’m not in the mood for it. Each track is good but none of them stand out and grab me at all. It’s all very similar to one another. They could have released this as a one 50 minute long track. This is usually not a problem with me but after a few rotations in I wasn’t feeling it as I was before. The appreciation and acknowledgement of how good this is will always be there, I just need to be in the mood for it.
Pros: Excellent music and production, I love the singing
Cons: Kinda all blends together and gets repetitive towards the end
3.5 out of 5
Here is some more greatness of 2011. More personal opinions that hardly matter but I feel as though they should be shared. Here are some more “best of 2011″ mini-lists. An award ceremony if you will. Except there are no awards. The only award is us listening to them and their music.
1 – ††† (Crosses)- †
2 – Deadfall – New Light
3 – Immolation – Providence
1 – Amon Amarth – Surtur Rising
2 – Crowbar – Sever The Wicked Hand
3 – Woods of Ypres – Woods IV
1 – Dominic “Forest” Lapointe of Beyond Creation
2 – Chris Corey of Last Chance To Reason
3 – Alex Webster of Blotted Science
BEST LEAD GUITARIST
1 – David Davidson of Revocation
2 – Simon Girard and Kevin Chartre of Beyond Creation
3 – Johan Söderberg and Olavi Mikkonen of Amon Amarth
1 – Francesco Paoli of Fleshgod Apocalypse
2 – Jade Simonetto of Hate Eternal
3 – Phil Dubois-Coyne of Revocation
BEST SINGER (CLEAN VOCALS)
1 – Michael Lessard of Last Chance To Reason
2 – Joseph E. Martinez of Junius
3 – Chelsea Wolfe
1 – Simon Girard of Beyond Creation
2 – Erik Rutan of Hate Eternal
3 – Johan Hegg of Amon Amarth
BEST ALBUM COVER
Revocation – Chaos of Forms
BEST INSTRUMENTAL ALBUM/EP
1 – Scale The Summit – The Collective
2 – Russian Circles – Empros
3 – Blotted Science – The Animation of Entomology
Here are some dates. I’m not writing a massive post about them. I highly suggest going and seeing them though. So do that…
2/16 Washington, DC @ DC9
2/17 Boston, MA @ Brighton Music Hall
2/18 Brooklyn, NY @ Knitting Factory
2/19 Philadelphia, PA @ North Star Bar
2/21 Pittsburgh, PA @ Stage AE
2/22 Columbus, OH @ The Basement
2/23 Grand Rapids, MI @ The Pyramid Scheme
2/24 Chicago, IL @ Beat Kitchen
2/25 St. Louis, MO @ The Firebird
2/26 Lawrence, KS @ Jackpot Music Hall
2/28 Denver, CO @ Marquis Theatre
2/29 Salt Lake City, UT @ Kilby Court
3/2 San Francisco, CA @ Bottom of the Hill
3/3 Los Angeles, CA @ The Satellite
3/4 San Diego, CA @ Soda Bar
3/6 Tucson, AZ @ Club Congress
3/7 Mesa, AZ @ The Nile Underground
3/9 Austin, TX @ Red 7
3/10 Dallas, TX @ Bryan Street Tavern
3/11 Houston, TX @ Warehouse Live Studio
Been a good year. Lot’s of exceptionally great music. However out of the 100+ albums covered and the many more I’ve just listened to…there are only a few that stood out. Here is my list of 2011. Starting with number 20 I have….
20. I Declare War – I Declare War – Kick someone in the chest while listening to this album. Great deathcore. They really improved on their technique and song writing this time around. Maintaining raw brutality while adding some unique leads in the mix.
13. Junius – Reports From The Threshold Of Death – The most “non metal” band on the list. Incredible music and singing. Gives me a Deftones vibe with the singers breathy style and the bands build up during the song. Unexpectedly awesome sound and song writing.
11. Wayne Static – Pighammer – It’s Static-X…but with some of the best riffs and electronic work Wayne has ever done. “Static Killer” is possibly one of the best songs ever written by Wayne Static. It’s also one of the worst album covers of the year. Ah, well. Can’t win em all!
Stay tuned for Part II of my “Best albums of 2011″ tomorrow!!
It appears that Junius has left an impression on anyone who listens to their album “Reports From The Threshold Of Death“. It’s hard to compare them to anyone really and my expertise outside of metal is very nil. Immediately I can compare the vocal style to the Deftones. Very deep and breathy singing during the verse and a more prominent and powerful vocal style during the chorus usually. Joseph E. Martinez’s vocals are still very much Chino Moreno in a way. Which is not a bad thing because I think Moreno’s voice is the best thing on the planet. Martinez definitely does an amazing job singing on this record.
The music is rich and powerful. It’s nothing too incredibly metal but the sound coming from Junius is some of the best I’ve heard all year. It’s really well written and it’s almost Muse like in a way. Their style and song writing is out of this world. This latest album is definitely one you can listen to over and over and by the 3rd or 4th time start singing along. Check out their album “Reports From The Threshold Of Death” today!
Something slightly different. I’m going to recommend a couple a of bands/albums to get you through tomorrow and possibly even Friday. Since a lot of people are going to be visiting family and I’m sure Grandma Betty does not want to hear Wolves In The Throne Room or Carnifex. I will do my best to give you some choices to help ease the pain a little. So here goes nothing.
First off we have two EP’s from a man named Eddie Kim. One was just released earlier this week and the other one was released earlier this year. Both can be found on his bandcamp page.
Click here to get to the PERIGEE EP. This EP is very calm and collective. Good instrumental album.
Here is the DEADFALL EP. This EP is calm as well but with more djenty goodness.
Another great album is Chelsea Wolfe’s “Ἀποκάλυψις” (Apokalypsis). Hard to place a specific genre or relate it to something else…just incredibly dark and sang really well.
Cloudkicker is another great band to enjoy while dealing with family battles over mashed potatoes. The band just released two EP’s on their (his) bandcamp page. Make sure you pick these two up. Hell I think even the old BEACONS album is still available as well.
Slightly heavy but still more on the chill side of things, Junius. Their latest album “Reports From The Threshold Of Death” is fucking good. Really fucking good. No seriously.
Russian Circles released a phenomenal album entitled “Empros” last month and holy hell it’s truly great stuff. Don’t believe me? Listen, you can thank me later.
So I was going through the sites I enjoy and metalsucks had a song up from a band I’ve never ever heard of, Junius. Honestly, the music is a little different from what I am use to but I did enjoy the song. Singing is unique and weird. Music is rather chill but still pretty heavy. Not the usual but still rather good. Enjoy.