Since bursting onto the scene with their bold and beautiful 2009 release The Martyrdom Of A Catastrophist, Bostonites Junius have carved a niche of bleak romanticism, which has deservedly attracted many admirers. Like the subversive writer from which their moniker is derived, the music on Days Of The Fallen Sun (Prosthetic) comes from the darkest recesses of the psyche yet is served with enchanting melodies that marry noise rock with an inherent pop sensibility.
The immediate difference in this latest work is how the voice of Joseph E. Martinez has been pushed to the forefront of the music. Martinez has always been a clever lyricist and storyteller but there is a new confidence about vocals. ‘A Day Dark With Night’ sums this up beautifully with Martinez delivering the line “We’re all fearless” with heart rendering passion. ‘Battle In The Sky’ is ominous, reverb drenched melodrama. A sensuous journey delivered with such intensity where every line sounds like Martinez would gladly tear his beating heart from his chest and lay it at your feet.
Will Benoit’s production allows every shimmering effect and tone to stand out. Martinez intense lyrics have drawn comparisons with that of Morrissey, but his vocal delivery is far deeper in tone. Ambient passages allow you to immerse yourself completely in the atmosphere and mood of this record. Delicate ambience building to post rock like crescendos yet their sprawling repetition would be better suited to a full-length affair.
“Days…” is a life affirming journey of desperation and triumph taking in delicate introspection juxtaposed with searing heaviness in both mood and tonality. The real masterstroke is left until last as ‘Forgiving The Cleansing Meteor’ is unleashed built on a foundation of gothic soundscapes, delicate chords that builds to an elating climax. It is this track where Martinez unleashes the eerie mantra, “We are the dreams of God/ We are the lights that follow/ We embrace the dark/We are the light we are the fire”. It is a haunting couplet, which embeds itself in your consciousness long after the album draws to a close. Moments of ecstatic bliss penetrate this brooding collection of exquisite material. Roll on the next album!