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Make It Blur

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Album Review

Who says you can't be all things to all people? Certainly not June, who cleverly incorporate all the best bits of the modern musical landscape into their aural tapestry. Make It Blur is the Chicago quartet's sophomore set, further refining and grandly building upon the foundation of the group's debut album, If You Speak Any Faster. Two years on, June sound far more polished, their arrangements are denser, and their attention to detail is obvious throughout. This is partially due to Marc McClusky's excellent production, which emphasizes the band's musical exactitude and heady atmospheres, but also reflects the band's growing maturity. Every musical passage is there for a reason, from the effervescent synth that bubbles around the bright and bouncy "Tempter" to the flash of chiming, rabble-rousing '80s guitar that brightens the otherwise muscle-flexing "I'd Lose Myself," the orchestral strings and lush synths that counterpoint the assaultive guitars of "Machine and the Line," and the sharp punk edge that sparks the exhilarating "A Taste." "Finally" has a spiky post-punk feel, splattering across the group's almost boy band-styled vocals, but encompasses echoes of at least another half-dozen subgenres as well. An acoustic version is included as a hidden bonus track, all the better to see just how dramatically the arrangement shifts the tone of the song. Slivers of new wave synth salt "Just Don't Let Go," while a military tattoo of beats drives "Southpoint," offsetting the song's glamorous guitars. But that's the sublime beauty of this set — the lavish keyboards continually tease out the atmospheres as the guitars slide from hard rock assaults to breezy pop/rock, while never drawing attention to the shifts, creating a subtle juxtaposition of styles. Other bands prefer dramatic swings in sound; June prefer a more nuanced approach, giving their music a fullness that's hard to beat. You'll find your own favorites over time, for this is the kind of magical set that wills you to play it time and time again before you come close to exhausting all its possibilities. Fabulous.

Customer Reviews

Love it! :)

I love this band with a passion! I wish they were still together! Their music is fantastic.


Genre: Pop

Years Active: '90s

Like other Chicago-area bands such as Fall Out Boy and the Academy Is..., June offered up an infectious mix of pop-punk and rock since forming in the first half of the 2000s. Starting out as a semi-joke to play around town, Tim Brennan (vocals/guitar), A.J. Brown (bass/vocals), Mark Palacz (guitar), and Mark Sutor (drums) got more serious as their four-song demo and live show soon amassed a substantial local following. They independently released The June EP in mid-summer 2004, and despite having...
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Make It Blur, June
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