CD Review : The Junction, “Another Link in the Chain”

Much has happened in The Junction camp since the release of their self-titled major label debut in 2007. Gone are the angular guitars, the greatly varying song structure and cathartic release that was written all over that album. Also gone are former keyboardist Joel James and the major label. With all the change that this Brampton-based outfit has had to endure since we last heard from them, I suppose it could be excused if the new album had a bit of a schizophrenic feel to it.

Yet, from all this evolution comes The Junction’s most cohesive and straightforward album to date. The band weaves through the one-two opening pop-shots “Birds of Prey” and “To all the Believers” with a confident swagger that reappears several times throughout the album on the upbeat numbers, while the subdued tracks plod on, driven by piano, acoustic guitar and a basic backbeat.

Singer/guitarist Brent Jackson is in fine form on the album. Which isn’t to say that he exhibits superior range or emotion in his lyrics, rather he works his vocals around the musical melodies of the songs allowing the two to play off each other. This interplay really works on several tracks, perhaps most notably on “Out of Here.”

Another Link in the Chain is, forgive me, an “indie” album in every sense of the word — the band released it on their own record label, after all. Yet, the production is crisp and clean, and each spin of the record reveals another layer of sound that wasn’t there the time before. Despite the inevitable “indie” pigeonholing, let’s hope this album finds a bigger audience than hipsters and music aficionados.