Junip is the band of Swedish-Argentine singer-songwriter José González along with his childhood friends drummer Elias Araya and keyboardist Tobias Winterkorn. The band has been together since the late 1990s, yet didn’t release their debut album, Fields, until 2010. They individually were going through their own developments in their life gathering school degrees and pursuing other musical ventures until they reconnected again. Then in April of 2013, they released their second self-titled album showcasing they were not ready to give up. Currently now they are on tour garnering the attention they deserve.
The night began with Barbarossa, who is London based singer/multi-instrumentalist James Mathé. Barbarossa previously was a member of José González’s touring band, and also has been playing the entire set with Junip while on this current tour.
Barbarossa’s performance included his soft, whimsy vocals along with only a keyboard, synthesizer, and a microphone. He easily took over the stage by himself maintaining an energetic buildup and keeping the audience excited in anticipation for what was to come. A favorite moment included seeing José González in the audience enjoying Barbarossa’s cover of Terence Trent D’arby’s Wishing Well over cool electric beats.
As soon as Junip took the stage, an incredible soundscape came over the room and the crowd was mesmerized. José González stood inherently front-and-center, naturally singing in a smooth register operating entirely in a calming way lightly strumming out chords while Elias Araya and Tobias Winkerton complimented with layers of deep percussion and electric piano. The band recreated a hypnotic collection of old and new songs ranging in tones from spacey to simple acoustic folk. Tightly pulled in opposite directions with slow rhythms and heartbeat drum patterns, together Junip created a relaxed, and progressive live atmosphere.
A highlight from the evening was the fourth song on the setlist “Rope and Summit”. As soon as the music immersed, their mysterious sound transfixed in-between soft harmonies of González along with backing vocals by Barbarossa, Araya’s bass-heavy rhythms, Winterkorn’s synthesizers, and percussionist Araya’s kinetic rhythm.
Enjoy a video of this moment:
In Every Direction
Rope and Summit
Don’t Let It Pass
Your Life Your Call
After All Is Said and Done
Line of Fire
After the show, Junip kindly took the time to sit for this beautiful group photo backstage while hanging in their dressing room exclusively for musicisart. Photo was created by staff photographer Daniel Blue Photography_Eleven Media